Spring Chef Partner Tip
We partnered with Blue Apron in 2017 when they adopted four schools in the Bronx as a chef partner. It’s been an incredible partnership, and we are deeply grateful for their support. Says Blue Apron, “Our partnership with WITS has been one that continues to reward and excite everyone at Blue Apron! Teaching children that food can still be delicious while maintaining an aspect of nutrition is something that we are incredibly passionate about – and WITS allows us to do just that! Between trips to local schools, live demonstrations, and a trip to our Test Kitchen, we’ve loved having WITS be a part of our lives, and look forward to strengthening the relationship more in the years to come!”
Blue Apron’s Spring Pesto Mac & Cheese
2 cups basil leaves
1⁄4 cup mint leaves
1⁄2 cup canned chickpeas, drained
1⁄8 cup parmesan cheese, grated, plus more for garnish
1⁄2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1 garlic clove, smashed
1 tsp lemon zest
2 teaspoons lemon juice (optional)
1 cup frozen peas, defrosted
6 oz fresh mozzarella, cubed
1/3 -1/2 cup olive oil, plus more for drizzling
12 oz dried or fresh pasta (any shape will do!)
- Start the Pesto: Add the basil leaves, mint, chickpeas, garlic, and a drizzle of olive oil to a food processor; pulse until chopped.
- Finish the Pesto : Add the Parmesan cheese, red pepper flakes, lemon zest and juice (if using) to the food processor. Pulse until combined. With the processor running, slowly add enough olive oil through the feed tube and process until the pesto is finely pureed and thoroughly combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Assemble your dish : Cook your pasta per the package instructions; thoroughly drain. Transfer the pesto to a large bowl. Add your cooked pasta, defrosted peas and cubed mozzarella. Mix to combine; season with salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with Parmesan cheese. Enjoy!
Spring Fitness Partner Tip
Since 2007, Yogi Beans has been translating the practice of yoga into a language kids understand and enjoy! They are committed to introducing young people to a healthy and lifelong activity that is noncompetitive, non-judgmental, physically challenging, and a ton of fun! Seven years ago, they partnered with Wellness in the Schools to offer the Yogi Beans classes as a part of WITS Family Fitness Fun Nights. Both companies believe fostering healthy habits in children at a young age create healthy and happier adults. Says Yogi Beans, “We specifically love being a part of Family Fitness Fun nights because it is an opportunity for the entire family to practice yoga together. It is wonderful to see a child show their parent how to do a yoga pose and watch both practice meditation and savasana (final rest pose) together.”
Yoga is a Mind- Body-Heart practice. Below are tips for each aspect of Yoga.
Mind: Watch your thoughts! In our Yogi beans classes we practice our “I AM” mantras. Make sure the word that follows I AM is a word that makes you feel good!
Body: One of the most simple and effective poses is Cat and Cow. Begin on your hands and knees. Round your back as if you were a scared cat to come into “cat” pose. Arch your back as you drop your belly to the floor for “cow” pose. These two poses are great to practice first thing in the morning to wake up your spine after a restful nights sleep. (Meows and Moo’s are optional!)
Heart: Before the start of school, a child and their parent can take a moment to think of one thing that they are both grateful for. Cultivating gratitude and appreciation make for a happy heart.