Felicia Rosen, a high school English teacher in Philadelphia, Pa., is a Rock Hills Ranch living experience intern at the ranch in Lowry and will use her experiences to educate back in the classroom.
In 1981, Felicia graduated from George Washington High School in Philadelphia. After that she attended Penn State as an undergraduate in journalism and political science in 1986. Felicia also earned a masters degree in Jewish studies and reading specialty.
While growing up in Philadelphia, Felicia was raised in a Jewish family. Felicia learned how to cook from her grandmother, Anne, and great-aunt, Sarah Schwartz.
“[Anne] set the standard,” Felicia said. “When they would cook, they would lay out a feast and we would still fight for leftovers.”
Her favorite dishes that she would have at family functions were gefilte fish and chicken soup with motza balls.
When her grandmother passed, so did her eating Jewish foods.
When she has cooked, Felicia hasn’t run into many issues. The biggest one that she could pinpoint would be something as miniscule as running to the grocery store for a forgotten item.
Felicia enjoys gardening at home, traveling and hiking. Felicia’s favorite place to visit to date? South Dakota.
Prior to accepting the internship, Felicia had never visited a farm, much less South Dakota, before making the move less than a month ago.
Felicia set out to South Dakota to see how the different half of American citizens lived. While she expected to learn about a different culture, not even she expected to learn so much.
According to Felicia, on the East Coast, there is an understanding of diet as she cites many of her different friends have certain diet restrictions such as dairy free or gluten. But something that she didn’t realize before making the move is that more keywords on products, generally means more money.
“There are such things as vegetarian eggs,” Felicia said. “But, being out here, I now know that chickens eat everything including insects, so there really isn’t such a thing.”
The biggest take away from South Dakota that Felicia has found, is that at Rock Hills Ranch, they can steward the environment while still making a profit.
“The two are not an opposition to each other,” Felicia said.
Another lesson that Felicia learned during her time at the ranch is just how the American prairie is evaporating faster than rain forests, demanding sustainability from citizens.
Felicia enjoys South Dakota so much, that she is already planning another trip back next year, but this time with company. Felicia said that her and Rock Hills Ranch owners, Lyle and Garnet Perman, have already been in talks about planning the trip.
While living in South Dakota for a month, Felicia has been introduced to new foods and sauces such as kuchen and strawberry rhubarb jam.
Rock Hills Ranch has hosted South Dakota State University students, donors and even corporate groups for at most 24 hours, but nothing longer. The target for Felicia is for the kids to stay an entire week.
It’s been about six years that Rock Hills Ranch has hosted living experience interns, according to Garnet. Interns have ranged from many different types of people including a linguist anthropologist and an Israel citizen. For Rock Hills Ranch, they typically look for interns who have some sort of influence so they can make a change.
Rock Hills Ranch also offers a ranch management internship where they hire college-aged workers to turn them into professionals.
By Trent Abrego
Felicia Rosen’s Recipes
Real Philly Cheese Steaks
Sliced Rib-eye (Thin, paper-like)
Cheese (the more fluorescent yellow, the better)
Grill the sliced ribeye. While grilling, start grilling both the mushrooms and onions. When searing the ribeye, break apart the meet. Cook cheese to a gooey, thick consistency similar to hot fudge. Put contents on hoagie bun, enjoy. Add salt and pepper to taste, another favorite topping if you don’t enjoy mushrooms or onions are sweet peppers or grilled peppers.
Nutella Stuffed Browned Butter Blondies
1 cup Nutella
10 Tbsps. butter (1 stick plus two tablespoons)
2 cups dark brown sugar, packed
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 tsps. vanilla
2 large eggs
2 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup Nutella
Line a small baking sheet with wax paper, clear our space in your freezer. Measure 1 cup of Nutella. Use two spoons to diveded the Nutella into about 12 dollops on the wax paper, each dollop about 2 or 3 teaspoons. It doesn’t require being exact. Place sheet in freezer while you make blondies. Preheat oven to 350. Line a 8x11x2 baking dish with parchment paper. In saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Stir occasionally until foam turns golden. Remove from heat, pour into mixing bowl. Sir in brown sugar and cream cheese, beating until slightly fluffy. Add vanilla, then eggs, beat well. Add cup of Nutella and swirl it with spatula, be sure to leave streaks. Pour into 2-quart pan, spreading to edges. Remove Nutella from freezer and push dollops into dough, distributing evenly. Bake for 27-30 minutes, or until golden brown on top. Enjoy.
Rhubarb Strawberry Jam
(Rock Hills Ranch favorite)
5 cups rhubarb
3 cups sugar
1 small package of frozen strawberries
3 ounce package of strawberry jello
Combine rhubarb and sugar and let set overnight. Cook until tender over medium hea. Add jello and dissolve well. Stir in strawberries. Can be frozen, refrigerated or processed for 10 minutes.
3 lbs. rhubarb (12 cups)
2 lbs. sugar (6 cups)
Juice of 2 oranges
Rind of 1 orange, grated
1/2 cup raisins
1 cup walnuts
Combine rhubarb and sugar, let stand overnight. Cook slowly for one hour. Add orange juice and rind. Cook for another hour. Add raisins and nuts. Cook for a few more minutes. Pour into jars, and lids and rings. Sterilize 10 minutes in boiling water.