1. Breaking from tradition
The Mediterranean diet can help reduce the risk of cancer and other diseases, Kerri Dotson, culinary medicine educator at Tulane University’s Goldring Center for Culinary Medicine, shared in a general session presentation. Operators don’t have to add traditional Mediterranean dishes to share the diet’s benefits with diners, Dotson said, proposing that they incorporate aspects of the diet into mainstream offerings. She suggested adding fruit to salad bars and in desserts, as well as tweaking dishes such as pasta with meat sauce by replacing some of the meat with fiber-rich, low-sodium lentils.
2. Sorghum-sweetened desserts
Sorghum, a nutrient-dense, gluten-free grain, is being used in sweets. Chef Robert Landolphi of the University of Connecticut in Storrs, Conn., says he has added sorghum beer and sorghum syrup to brownie batter to create a fun gluten-free treat for St. Patrick’s Day.
3. Operators go beyond blended burgers...
4. …and share the story behind the healthy food they serve
At the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, Mich., Executive Chef Frank Turchan’s team invites farmers from the university’s farm to meet with students throughout the year. The visits allow students to get an inside look at how some of the produce served in the dining halls is grown, Turchan said.