12-Year-Old Maplewood Girl Wins Ticket to White House

Updated: 07/18/2014 1:43 PM
Created: 07/16/2014 7:18 PM
By: Megan Matthews

A 12-year-old Maplewood girl’s cooking skills are taking her to the White House.

Sophie Bollin’s quinoa and black beans recipe was selected as the top Minnesota entry in First Lady Michelle Obama’s Healthy Lunchtime Challenge. The contest asked children to create healthy and affordable lunchtime recipes with the supervision of a parent or guardian. The entries also had to include each of the main food groups.

Bollin whipped up her recipe for our KSTP crew Wednesday night. She used ingredients including fresh cilantro from her family’s garden. Bollin chose a recipe and made it her own, because it’s a recipe she likes to eat.

“We added different spices, frozen vegetables and Mexican cheese on top,” Bollin said, describing her recipe.

She said she was excited and surprised when she found out she was the top Minnesota entry.

“It’s just quinoa and black beans, and I didn’t really think it would make it to the top,” she said.

Bollin flies to Washington, D.C. on Thursday with her mother, Deborah Webster. They will join winners from each state and U.S. territory to celebrate healthy eating with the First Lady at the Kids’ State Dinner on Friday.

“I’m going to be a bit nervous,” Bollin said.

We asked her what question she would like to ask the first lady. Her response, “Do her kids clean their rooms themselves?”

Bollin also shared her recipe with us:

Quinoa and Black Beans

1 tsp. olive oil
3 tsp. minced garlic
3/4 cup uncooked tri-color quinoa
1 1/2 cups chicken broth (vegetable broth can be substituted for vegan recipe)
1 tsp. ground cumin
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
sea salt and grated pepper to taste
2 cups frozen mixed vegetables (corn, carrots, peas, green beans) heated separately
1 (15 ounce) black  beans, drained
1 cup shredded Mexican cheese (omit for vegan dish or substitute with vegan cheese)
1/4 cup fresh cilantro

Heat oil in a saucepan, cook minced garlic until lightly browned. Add quinoa, pour chicken broth over mixture. Stir in seasonings, bringing to a low boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Stir in mixed vegetables and black beans, simmering for 5 minutes or until heated through. Top with shredded cheese and cilantro, cover, and allow to melt. Serves 4.

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