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First lady announces winners of nationwide ‘Healthy Lunchtime Challenge,’ White House lunch

White House | 6/30/2013, 2:13 a.m.
First lady Michelle Obama speaking at a "Let's Move!" program for 400 children at the Eastside and Northside Elementary Schools in Clinton, Miss., Feb. 27. Rogelio V. Solis

WASHINGTON – First lady Michelle Obama along with the Department of Education and the Department of Agriculture announced last week the winners of a nationwide recipe challenge to promote healthy lunches as a part of the first lady’s Let’s Move! Initiative. The 54 winners, including 12-year-old Devanshi Udeshi from Sugar Land, Texas, will join the first lady for a healthy lunch, a visit to the White House kitchen garden followed by a Kid’s State Dinner at the White House hosted by Obama on July 9.

“Our Kids’ State Dinner is one of my favorite events of the year, and the kid chefs who come from around the country never cease to impress and inspire me with their creativity and ingenuity,” Obama stated.

The second Healthy Lunchtime Challenge, originated by online food website Epicurious, received more than 1,300 entries featuring wholesome, tasty ingredients including salmon, black beans and ground turkey.

“This year, we received very sophisticated recipe entries from all over the country that featured healthy ingredients like salmon, Greek yogurt and ground turkey,” said Tanya Steel, Epicurious editor-in-chief.

Entries had to represent each of the food groups, either in one dish or as part of a lunch meal, with fruits and veggies making up roughly half of the recipe. The winners were chosen by a panel of judges that included representatives from Epicurious, the Let’s Move! Initiative and White House staff.

“The Healthy Lunchtime Challenge makes healthy eating fun and educational and I am inspired every year by the creative efforts of these kids to create healthy recipes,” Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said.

The list of winners and recipes can be found at http://www.recipechallenge. epicurious.com.

Additionally, a printable e-cookbook of winning recipes will be available in July at http://www.letsmove.gov, http://www.epicurious.com, http://www.usda.gov and http://www.ed.gov.