Ethnic cuisines are highlight of Scranton campus' virtual cooking classes

DUNMORE, Pa. — Penn State Scranton’s commitment to diversity and inclusion has extended to the kitchen.

The campus is currently hosting a series of Virtual Cultural Cooking Classes open to the campus community, alumni and local residents. Taught by registered dietitian nutritionist Jodi Greebel, the interactive classes feature a menu devoted to a specific ethnic cuisine that participants can make from the comfort of their home kitchen.

The next class is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. onTuesday, March 23, and will feature an Indian-themed menu of tandoori chicken, basmati rice and lentils raita.

The free event will take place on Zoom at this link. To register, visit this page.

Jodi Greebel at cutting board with knife and fruits

Penn State Scranton is hosting a series of Virtual Cultural Cooking Classes featuring registered dietitian nutritionist Jodi Greebel. The next class, slated for Tuesday, March 23, will feature an Indian-themed menu.  

Credit: Penn State

In the days leading up to the class, Greebel will provide a grocery list of ingredients that will be emailed to participants, said Coordinator of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Dharti Ray, noting attendees can actively prepare the meal along with Greebel or simply watch and enjoy the proceedings.

According to Ray, the Cultural Cooking Classes were inspired by the campus’ Cultural Cuisine Tours, which gave students the opportunity to eat at a different Scranton-area ethnic restaurant each month during the 2019-20 academic year.

“It became a popular program amongst the students, so we brought it back through the virtual cooking classes,” Ray said. “Degy Entertainment offered these classes with Jodi Greebel and we thought it would be a perfect engaging activity for the students to do. The goal of these cooking classes is to allow students and others who participate to experience different cultures through food.”

A graduate of Duke University and New York University, Greebel has spent more than 15 years helping children, teenagers and young adults develop a healthy relationship with food. She’s appeared on ABC’s “Good Morning America,” as well as radio stations across the country and in publications such as InStyle, Reader’s Digest and Eat This, Not That. She also regularly speaks at schools and universities.

At the first cooking class in February, Greebel led attendees through an Italian-themed menu of spaghetti, meatballs and garlic bread.

“The students and staff really enjoyed the class. Some participants cooked along, while others just enjoyed the class,” Ray said. “Jodi constantly interacts with the participants throughout the class and answers any questions.”

Ray hopes to make the cooking classes a regular campus activity. Following this month’s event, Greebel will conduct a Hispanic-themed class at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 20. That menu will consist of sheet pan chicken fajitas, guacamole and homemade tortilla chips. To register, visit this link.

For additional information on the Virtual Cultural Cooking Classes, email Ray at [email protected].