Aug 3, 2012 9:28 AM by Angela Douglas - Q2 News
BILLINGS - Kayla Wayman, 10, definitely has a green thumb.
"I just like watching them grow," said Kayla, while looking fondly at her vegetable plants. "And they turn so pretty when they're done."
Then, once they're ripe, Kayla - who also knows her way around the kitchen - uses the veggies to create nutritious meals for her family.
One of their favorites? Pizza.
"I made up a healthier version with whole-wheat crust and vegetables," the 10-year-old Billings girl explained.
In fact, that pizza is now award winning.
This summer Kayla entered the recipe in First Lady Michelle Obama's Healthy Lunchtime Challenge. More than 1,200 kids from the age of eight to 12 entered the contest. One winner from each state was selected. For Montana, that was Kayla.
When asked how she reacted to the news, Kayla smiled.
"I was just like, 'Oh my gosh! I won!'"
There's a big prize that goes along with that accomplishment.
"We get to do a tour of the vegetable garden at the White House, we get to eat lunch with Michelle Obama, and they might even be cooking my meal!" she said.
The goal behind the challenge was to encourage healthy eating. The recipes were judged on nutrition, taste, creativity, affordability, and the story behind the dish.
The contest is a partnership with Epicurious.com and the departments of Education and Agriculture.
Clearly the young Billings chef met all the criteria, but what exactly is in 'Kayla's Garden Chicken Pizza?'
"I figured that spinach, chicken, cheese, tomatoes, basil and tomato sauce all taste really good together," Wayman said simply.
Light, simple, and fresh. Sounds like a tasty a summer meal to me. Plus, to top it off, she even grilled it!
Of course her, Michelle and Rich, were fully involved in this process and her little sister, Alison, made the perfect taste tester.
"We're very proud of her," beamed Michelle.
Kayla, along with her dad and the 53 other winners, will fly to Washington D.C. later this month.
The winner from Wyoming is Grace Ratchford, 12, of Rock Springs, with a Macaroni Casserole.