Julie Jacobs knows a lot about good nutrition - and how to whip up a crowd-pleasing bean dip. The nutrition educator for Oregon State University's Linus Pauling Institute is in charge of its Healthy Youth Program. When the Moore Family Center at the College of Public Health and Human Sciences launched its first healthy tailgating recipe contest, she rose to the occasion.
On Friday, her recipe won out over 30 entrants with her layered dip made of low-sodium black beans, garlic, cheese, salsa, Greek yogurt - and only about 110 calories for a hefty three-quarter-cup serving.
Five finalists whose recipes were turned in by early October had their healthy creations tasted Friday by an appreciative assembly of students, staff and faculty in the lobby of the Hallie E. Ford Center at OSU.
Emily Ho, who is the endowed director of the Moore Family Center, said the Public Health and Human Sciences college is just a year old - and seeking accreditation to become the first of its kind in Oregon. The GridIron contest was a tasty way to draw attention and support to the college's mission of studying and showcasing the importance of good nutrition as a pathway to good public health.
The fact that the GridIron Chef challenge happened in conjunction with the homecoming activities this week didn't hurt, either.
A high-profile judge who helped to select the winners on Thursday - and who has been a generous supporter of the center that bears his name - is Bob Moore, founder of Bob's Red Mill. He also donated the top prize of a gift basket including Bob's Red Mill products and a $100 gift certificate. His "Bob's Pick" winner was Heavenly, Healthier Layer Dip. Another top winner - whose Beaver Fan Black Bean Quinoa Salad was selected the audience's favorite on Friday - was Public Health student Bethany Harmon. For their recipes, see http://health.oregonstate.edu/alumni/homecoming and scroll to the bottom of the site.
The winners were chosen on the basis of nutritional value, taste and appeal, creativity and ease of preparation.
About 50 people attended Friday's event, which also featured "Benny Beaver" and a trivia contest courtesy of Mr. Bill's Traveling Trivia. People will have another chance to enjoy the top recipes during Dad's Weekend at OSU, Nov. 1 - 3.