What’s in your kitchen?

Chefs share the trends that are driving their kitchen decisions.

Published in FSD Update

quinoa-salad

Coltek adds that the key to winning non-vegans over to alternative proteins is education. “We use fresh herbs and marinades to add flavor and we make sure the sodium is low. Once you educate them, they won’t mind going to some of these categories.”

At Penn State, beans are used to supply the protein in the bulk of vegetarian and vegan items, Kowalski says.

“Some of the alternative proteins don’t have as much cross-appeal with non-vegetarians, unlike black beans, which a non-vegetarian might choose,” he explains. “We offer items like black bean quinoa, black bean sliders, and a corn and black bean salsa.”

School foodservice operators are beginning to have more freedom to use meat alternatives. Sodexo’s Feldman says that her team has developed 60 meatless recipes that meet USDA requirements.

“We have put a big focus on beans and tofu,” she notes. “We just now have been allowed to use tofu as a creditable protein and we’ve done a lot of work with how to properly marinate and roast it. We’ve done a lot of international flavors—Latin and Asian are good entry points in getting people to consider meatless.”

In Austin schools, beans are the go-to vegetable protein, Burke says.

“We don’t do any tofu because prices can be high on that sometimes,” he explains. “We messed with seitan a few years ago when we partnered with Whole Foods and worked with their chefs. We were making it in house but the labor was really high for something that didn’t go over very well, and it costs too much to purchase.”

Douglas County’s Morse says Greek yogurt is currently his district’s non-meat protein of choice, while other alternatives aren’t being requested.

“A year and a half ago, I was getting all these emails about how we have to have Meatless Monday,” Morse recalls. “There was always this desire to have a different protein rather than an animal protein. I don’t know why, but I’ve seen that disappear. We have our work ahead of us to see how we can get in that vegetarian option.”

Stanislaw believes the Whittier Health Network will continue to find more innovative ways to use beans and legumes.

“One particular recipe that has been received well is our lentil pilaf. Quinoa is another alternative that we are trying to introduce to our senior population,” he notes. “Unfortunately we get pushback from the current seniors. I believe once we start to see the next generation of seniors come on board they will have much more knowledge and acceptance of quinoa.”

More From FoodService Director

Menu Development
usa map regions

From global flavors to clean labels, it’s clear that some buzzworthy noncommercial menu trends are universal. But FoodService Director ’s 2016 surveys have revealed some noteworthy differences within segments in the Northeast, South, Midwest and West regions. We combed through data from our College and University Census, Hospital Census and Long-Term Care/Senior Living Census for the most surprising variations in menu trends and expectations.

1. Plant-based dishes are on the rise at Midwestern colleges and universities

Seventy-seven percent of C&U operators in this region say...

Industry News & Opinion

Ithaca College is turning to new solutions to address overcrowding at a dining hall that is already understaffed, The Ithacan reports .

The Ithaca, N.Y., school's Terrace Dining Hall has seen a large influx of students this year after being renovated, causing lines to wrap around the dining hall.

To ease congestion, Sodexo Area General Manager Jeffrey Scott told The Ithacan that the eatery has added a separate entree line, as well as signage displaying menu items at less-crowded food stations in an effort to draw students to the other side of the dining hall.

The...

Menu Development
mac cheese pizza

Anybody think the popularity of mac and cheese has played out? Anyone?

More likely, foodservice directors are trying to bake new life into the comfort staple by tweaking the presentation and components. Here’s a snapshot of how that rejuvenation effort looks in streetside restaurants.

Industry News & Opinion

Noncommercial foodservice operations and other employers would be spared from costly new overtime pay regulations if 21 states succeed in the legal challenge they jointly filed yesterday.

The lawsuit asks the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas to set aside the rules, which are scheduled to take effect on Dec. 1.

If the court rejects the request, restaurants and other businesses will be required after that date to pay overtime to any salaried employee who works more than 40 hours in a week and earns less than $47,476 on an annual basis.

The...

FSD Resources