Shreya Patel from Chicago was pleasantly surprised when US President Barack Obama came to her table during the Kids State Dinner hosted at the White House. Accompanied by her mother Priti Patel, Shreya was the only Indian-American to have been invited by the First Lady for now what has become an annual event.

The 55 participants to the Kids State Dinner were selected from a national Healthy Lunchtime Challenge. Nearly 1,000 kids had entered the competition this year. "I have watched my mom and grandma make all sorts of delicious food in the kitchen with an Indian twist since I was born," Shreya said.

"I have been helping them cook since I was three. I love to mix, measure, chop, and even clean up afterwards," she added. Though the dinner is hosted by the First Lady, Obama has been making a surprise crash into the party every year. "I particularly am impressed with the Barackamole. So I'm expecting people to save me a little sampling of the Barackamole," he said amidst laughter. He said broccoli is his favorite vegetable. "I eat it all the time," Obama cited. 

"You blew the judges away with your talent and creativity. You included fruits and veggies from every colour of the rainbow in your recipes. You used all kinds of ingredients -- flax seed -- do any of the adults even know what flax seed is? Cumin, and we have yellow miso paste that was included in one of the recipes -- pretty sophisticated," the First lady said in her remarks.

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