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Students put culinary skills to the test  

picture of students cookingpicture of students with chef Evette Rios

Lifestyle expert and blogger Evette Rios visited WHS to lead a healthy cooking demo as part of the Fidelis Care Lunchology program. Students tested their culinary skills making a steak stir fry that will be featured on the October school lunch menu.

Lifestyle expert visits WHS for healthy cooking demo


The cafeteria kitchen at Watervliet High School became a classroom for 10 students on Friday, where they joined lifestyle expert and television host Evette Rios for a hands-on healthy cooking demonstration as part of the Fidelis Care Lunchology campaign.

On the menu

Equipped with knives, cutting boards, whisks and assorted culinary tools, the students chopped broccoli, red peppers, onions, carrots, zucchini and other vegetables alongside Rios to learn to make a healthy (and tasty) Asian-inspired steak stir-fry featuring a variety of vibrant vegetables and healthy brown rice.

Rios teamed with Fidelis Care last year to launch the initiative that educates families on how to stretch meals by making nutritious and easy-to-prepare lunches from leftovers. “Kids can be picky eaters, which means the pressure is on to creatively transform healthy alternatives into food they will actually want to eat,” said Rios.

After chopping the vegetables into bite-size chunks, the students mixed together a stir-fry sauce using soy, rice vinegar, oil and a blend of spices, including ginger, garlic, and red pepper. Working in pairs, the young chefs sautéed the vegetables with leftover strips of steak and added the sauce to heat through. Next, they plated the meals, carefully spooning the sauce, meat and vegetable mixture over a cup of brown rice. Then came the best part: Eating! The students sampled their stir-fry meals with 100 percent agreeing it was delicious!

The steak-stir fry will be featured on the school lunch menu in October, giving all students the opportunity to try it.

About Evette Rios

A native New Yorker, Evette Rios serves as brand ambassador for Lunchology where she continues to promote delicious, nutritious and simple menus ideas through a variety of media outlets and event appearances to encourage healthy eating. Her extensive resume as a lifestyle expert includes hosting Dream Quest with Evette Rios on the CW TV network, Director of Development for Latina magazine, Latina.com and Latinkitchen.com, and host of Recipe Rehab on Z living TV network. She also appeared on ABC's “The Chew” as a field correspondent and spent years as a contributor on Rachael Ray. In addition, Rios has been featured in numerous publications including Parade and Good Housekeeping.

About Fidelis Care

Fidelis Care offers quality, affordable coverage for children and adults of all ages and at all stages of life, including products available through NY State of Health: The Official Health Plan Marketplace. With more than 1.5 million members Statewide, Fidelis Care was founded on the belief that all New Yorkers should have access to affordable, quality health insurance. Read more about the Lunchology program