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MILWAUKEE - Two junior chefs from Minnesota and Wisconsin are getting ready to have lunch with first lady Michelle Obama.

Liam Kivirist is an 11-year-old from Browntown, Wis. Kaitlyn Kirchner is a 9-year-old from Madelia, Minn. They're among the winners of a White House contest that challenged kids between the ages of 8 to 12 to create healthy lunchtime recipes.

They joined the other winners Tuesday for lunch at the White House.

Liam won with his chili, simmered in a solar oven. Kaitlyn came up with a garden stir fry featuring vegetables she and her family grow in their garden.

Both say they've been cooking since they were little. They say they enjoy eating healthy meals, and they're thrilled to have lunch with Mrs. Obama.

Michelle Obama says 54 kids who earned a trip to the White House by winning a nationwide recipe contest are showing how talented, creative and brilliant young people can be.

It's the second year the first lady has hosted the kids' "state dinner."

The contest for 8- to 12-year-olds is sponsored by the Epicurious food website and the departments of Agriculture and Education. It drew a batch of more than 1,300 entries that were whittled to 54 winners - one from each of the 50 states, three territories and the District of Columbia.

Mrs. Obama singled out a few of the champion culinary creations, including Confetti Peanut Ginger Party Pasta from Missouri, Pan-seared Mississippi Catfish on a Bed of River Rice and Slam Dunk Veggie Burger from Texas.

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