Cuisine 'Smashing' & Other Lessons from MenuDirections Day 2

A full day of education sessions and sampling yields some aha moments

By 
Peter Romeo, Director of Digital Content

--One of the advantages of Mediterranean food for a high-volume feeding operation is its serving temperature and long hold times. “Most things are served ambient or chilled, or right from the grill,” noted chef Marion Gibson. So it can be easily offered in a weigh-and-pay set-up like a salad bar, or in a pick-three, fill-your-plate format.

--Breakfast, a source of sales growth for many foodservice operators, will likely morph into multiple feeding occasions as millennials age. Gibson said her company, Aramark-owned Lifeworks, has already identified three sub-dayparts that address the youngster’s consumption habits.

There’s early morning quick-snacking, where the harried young adults grab something on the run; the traditional, more leisurely traditional breakfast; and a mid-morning larger snack, where the eater has been on the job for awhile and wants to take a break.

--Google tries to put enough food options within its offices to have employees no farther than 500 feet from something to munch.

--If your food is cute, like a baby carrot or a smaller celery ticket, “you can get more money for it,” Gibson noted during her MenuDirections session on Mediterranean small plates.

--Beans, contrary to their bad rap, decrease rather than foster gas. “That’s been proven,” reported Erik Henry of Bush Brothers, a major bean supplier.

--Coca-Cola owns a coconut water company; PepsiCo owns a coconut water company; and, perhaps most intriguing of all, Madonna owns a coconut water company. There was no assessment offered of Lady Gaga’s interest in the product, which is currently soaring in popularity.

--There’s no scientific reason for physician’s relative silence on the health benefits of eating psyllium seeds and oat bran, according to celebrated nutrition expert James Painter, MenuDirections’ keynote speaker. The data proves that those forms of fiber could have a significant effect on well-being.

By Peter Romeo, Director of Digital Content
View More Articles By Peter Romeo

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion
Shedd Aquarium White Sox Shedd The Straw

The Chicago White Sox have partnered with the Shedd Aquarium to support their “Shedd the Straw” initiative: a plan that the groups expect to curb the use of plastic straws by about 215,000 this baseball season.

Beginning on Earth Day, April 22, drinks at all dining locations throughout the Sox’s Guaranteed Rate Field will not be automatically served with plastic straws. Guests will be provided with biodegradable straws upon request. Guaranteed Rate Field is said to be the first in Major League Baseball to ban the use of plastic straws.

“At one of Shedd Aquarium’s local...

Industry News & Opinion

The Henry P. Kendall Foundation, a philanthropic group that aims to create a more sustainable food system in New England, has announced its creation of the New England Food Vision Prize .

The foundation is inviting foodservice leaders from colleges and universities throughout New England to submit their ideas on how to create a stronger food system that will help the region produce at least half of its own food by 2060.

Qualifying ideas must be collaborative and replicable, among other requirements. The foundation hopes that by reaching out to large food purchasers, like...

Industry News & Opinion
CP building

Central Point School District in Central Point, Ore., is sprucing up its lunch program by adding more locally produced foods and scratch-made dishes, KDRV reports.

A nutritionist and chef from the Oregon Dairy and Nutrition Council trained school staff on 15 new recipes with the goal of upgrading the school lunch menu.

The ongoing project has been successfully implemented in other Oregon school districts over the last eight years. The trainings focus on Oregon State University Extension Food Hero recipes that meet USDA nutrition standards and incorporate locally sourced...

Industry News & Opinion

Carson City School District in Carson City, Nev., hosted its Breakfast with a Hero event this week, Carson Now reports.

Held at an elementary school, the event invited local law enforcement to serve breakfast and eat with students. Officials say the event was intended to help students connect and engage with local officers in a casual setting.

Read the full story via carsonnow.org .

Photo by Dan Davis at Carson City School District

FSD Resources