Foodservice Equipment & Supplies

JUL 2018

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34 • FOODSERVICE EQUIPMENT & SUPPLIES • JULY 2018 CULINARY NUTRITION SERIES University of Missouri Launched: Spring 2017 Synopsis: The University of Missouri spiced up its four- year-old Culinary Discovery Series themed dinners in its in- house teaching/demo kitchen. The Culinary Nutrition Series consists of one part hands-on cooking classes that teach fundamentals and one part nutrition education. The program is a collaborative effort between the school's dining and nu- trition departments, led by Executive Chef Eric Cartwright, CEC, and Assistant Manager Kristen Hasan, RD. The three-hour evening classes, two per semester, have themes such as "Lean & Mean Protein," "Plants on the Plate" and "Comfort Food Makeover." Each of the 12 student participants must reserve a spot in advance and be on a campus dining meal plan. The cost is $28 per class per person, equivalent to four meal swipes. Divided into four teams of three, students work at cook- ing stations set up in the teaching kitchen and collectively prepare a multicourse meal they enjoy family-style at the end of the class. "Each class starts out with Eric and/or me or another dietitian presenting information on things like knife skills 101, sanitation, nutrition and healthy cooking tech- niques geared to featured recipes," Hasan says. "Then we get into hands-on cooking, with each team preparing compo- nents of the meal." Student employees of Dining Services and senior-level nutrition students assist in program development, contributing ideas for themes likely to interest their peers. They also assist students as needed during the prep and cooking process. Why It Scores High: It leverages an existing facility, existing equipment and current staff to engage with and educate students in a new way. And it's extremely popular — sessions often sell out within 15 minutes of Dining Services posting new classes on its website. "This new endeavor has been received with great enthusiasm by students. They find it educational, engaging and a contributor to their success here at MU," says Cartwright. Key Learnings: Careful menu planning ensures the student teams have equitable assignments and that stations are properly equipped for preparation of the various courses — some hot, some cold. While participants handle most prep from scratch during class, dining services staff pre-prep components in some cases to ensure teams can complete all menu items in the time available. Currently utilizing stations created from dining- height tables in the teaching/demo kitchen, the instructors expect to invest soon in new tables that can adjust to standing prep height for better comfort and ergonomics. Left and Top: Following culinary- and nutrition-focused information sessions, students work in teams of three to prepare multicourse, family-style meals. Bottom: Signs next to foods indicate possible allergens; the sign near the spaghetti squash lasagna has "dairy" circled. Photos courtesy of University of Missouri Dining Services GREAT IDEA NO. 2

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