Doctors Hospital at Renaissance chef serves up healthy, delicious food

Executive chef Luis Espinoza shares the ins and outs of providing healthy and tasty hospital food to a variety of customers.

MCALLEN, Texas—Getting better is the goal of any patient in a hospital, and according to Executive Chef Luis Espinoza, eating the right foods is a big part of that process.

“The doctors count on us to make sure the food is (made) properly so they can modify and help the people who are here,” the Harlingen resident said. “… If (patients) aren’t getting better, we need to figure out why.”

Espinoza heads up the cafeteria and kitchen at Doctors Hospital at Renaissance, providing nutritious foods for patients, staff and visitors. He will also be demonstrating how to make food that both healthy and delicious at the Por Vida Food Festival, which is set for 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, July 27, at the Pharr Events Center.

For those who do have diabetes or are trying to lose weight, the chef and a nutritionist on staff lead cooking classes at the hospital.

Espinoza offers the students healthy alternatives. For example, instead of frying, he would suggest roasting chicken or grilling.

At the hospital, Espinoza must stick to strict recipes for those who are on special needs diets such as low-fat, no-sodium, gluten-free or sugar- free.

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

This semester, the East Quad dining team at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor is taking steps to offer more authentic global cuisine , Michigan Daily reports.

The team has partnered with the Office of Student Life to start a conversation with students on how best to create and serve Middle Eastern and North African cuisine. Additionally, the university invited chefs from Japan and India to campus to help its chefs create more authentic recipes.

The school’s push for more accurate global cuisine was partially inspired by an international food event that got cancelled...

Industry News & Opinion
Madison food truck

The Madison Metropolitan School District in Madison, Wis., has partnered with a local organization to debut a food truck that will serve healthy, locally sourced lunch options for Madison high school students, according to The Capital Times .

The truck, which was donated by the Emmi Roth Cheese Co., will visit four high schools Tuesday through Friday, spending a day at each campus. Students who qualify for free or reduced-price lunch can use the food truck as they would the school cafeteria for no-cost or discounted meals.

Members of MMSD and partner organization REAP Food...

Industry News & Opinion

Identifying prospective employees may be less challenging for foodservice operators than getting would-be recruits to complete the hiring process , according to a new study of why job applicants bail.

The report shows that nearly three out of fours applicants (74%) will drop their effort to be hired if they suspect management is racist, and two out of three (62%) will flee if they learn of sexual harassment allegations. Roughly the same proportion (65%) will halt their pursuit if they encounter indications of a gender gap in pay.

About half (45%) of candidates won’t show...

Menu Development
zoodles

Here’s how two operations are spotlighting produce this season.

Oodles of zoodles

Binghamton University underscored its growing focus on plant-based options with a recent zoodle pop-up on campus. The pop-up, which served vegetable noodle bowls in vegan and vegetarian varieties, sold out of the dishes in four hours. The Binghamton, N.Y., school aims to add zoodles to its regular menu in the fall.

A buffet boost

The dining team at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, recently re-evaluated its buffet offerings with an eye toward adding healthy options. It updated the fruit and...

FSD Resources