Confessions of Liz Simmonds

Bon Appetit's Liz Simmonds dreams of the beaches of Greece and thinks cupcakes are overrated.
Liz Simmonds, resident district manager for Bon Appetit at SAS, admires Ina Garten, dreams of the beaches of Greece and thinks cupcakes are overrated.

Q. What is the best part of your job?

I enjoy interacting with a diverse group of people.

Q. What is the worst part of your job?

Not being able to travel much.

Q. What do you consider to be your greatest achievement?

The relationships that I’ve built with colleagues and clients.

Q. If you weren't in foodservice what would you be doing?

Teaching at a university.

Q. Which talent would you most like to have?

I would love to be able to draw.

Q. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

I’m not very patient.

Q. What is your greatest fear?

Losing my family.

Q. Which living person do you most admire?

My parents.

Q. What is your favorite meal?

Any meal that I don’t have to cook myself.

Q. What is your "guilty pleasure?"

Sleeping in.

Q. What will people always find in your refrigerator?

Apples.

Q. What is the weirdest food you have ever eaten?

Eel.

Q. What do you consider to be the most overrated foodservice trend?

Cupcakes.

Q. Are you a morning or evening person?

Evening.

Q. What are your words to live by?

If your dreams don’t scare you, they’re not big enough.

Q. Who is your favorite celebrity chef?

Ina Garten.

Q. What activity is at the top of your bucket list?

I’d like to travel through Europe with my family.

Q. What is your most treasured possession?

My wedding rings and what they symbolize.

Q. What is your dream vacation?

The beaches of Greece.

Q. What do you value the most in a friend?

Honesty.

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

The University of Maryland will begin offering weekly specials at all of its dining halls this semester, The Diamond Back reports.

The weekday specials will allow Dining Services to offer past menu items that students miss as well as new dishes students have been requesting, according to a spokesperson.

Students can find out which specials are being offered each week via dining hall table tents as well as through Dining Services’ social media. During select weeks, the specials may reflect a particular theme, such as Taste of the South.

Read the full story via...

Menu Development
salad chicken

Vegetables and grains have stepped into the spotlight, thanks to the “flipping the plate” trend, but protein is still an important part of a balanced diet. Sources including meat, cheese, nuts, and meat alternatives such as tofu and tempeh can and should still be on the plate—albeit as a side dish or topping rather than the main event.

“Whatever we do [as FSDs] needs to be rooted in the culture, and today’s culture is all about healthy eating and plant-focused meals,” says Chris Studtmann, executive chef at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill. “A recipe is an idea; culture is...

Menu Development
jackfruit

It emerged as a top food trend on Pinterest’s 2017 predictions, is “the latest miracle food” according to Epicurious, and was called “a nutritional bonanza” by NPR. Jackfruit is the latest superfood garnering buzz, and Even Stevens Sandwiches has gone after the vegetarian-friendly option for a recently launched torta. Here, Culinary Director Brandon Price shares three lessons learned from adding jackfruit to the menu.

Finding the best form

Using fresh jackfruit wasn’t the answer for the chain. It has to be sourced internationally, and breaking it down cuts into labor costs. But...

Ideas and Innovation
hibachi grill cooking

We saw in 2016 that many operators were trying to have some type of display cooking in their food operation. We installed a hibachi grill this fall, and within three months we had 300 residents and guests make reservations. We also use our hibachi grill for cooking classes twice a month, where our hibachi chef Abby Kramer does an excellent job teaching different cuisines. We have received so many compliments that we have decided to get another hibachi grill for a different dining venue in 2017.

FSD Resources