Every year as fall and spring roll around, 15 women meet at Wesley-Rankin Community Center for a cooking class where they learn how to create healthy meals.
At the end of each class, the women take home several ingredients so they can recreate those same recipes with their families. Though the ingredients change with each class, one ingredient in particular remains a staple of the cooking course: newfound confidence in the kitchen.
La Cocina Alegre (Happy Kitchen) provides West Dallas women a hands-on culinary and nutritional education that they otherwise may not have had access to. Many face socioeconomic challenges when trying to feed their families a nutritious meal. However, the curriculum at La Cocina Alegre is proving that eating healthy doesn’t have to cost more.
The classes are provided by GROW North Texas, a nonprofit dedicated to connecting North Texans with local and sustainable resources that inspire a healthy lifestyle. While Happy Kitchen and its curriculum stemmed from the Sustainable Food Center in Austin, members of GROW North Texas quickly discovered that certain pockets of the Dallas community could also benefit from community cooking classes.