One of our top innovations at Food As Medicine 2013? Cooks on Call, a kitchen table in the corridor outside the lecture hall, where participants could learn tips and techniques to take home to their heart’s content. We were fortunate enough to have some of America’s top culinary educators behind the table, including Marti Wolfson, Culinary Wellness expert of martiwolfson.com. Here’s her suggestion for an easy, healthy, go-to staple.
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Rebecca Katz, Chef, Author and Food As Medicine (FAM) Executive Chef, demoed this recipe in her kitchen on stage at the end of FAM last year. It’s become a staple in our summer menus. We thought you’d like it, too!
Some folks like shots of tequila. Well, my choice of a shot is much, much healthier. Take this Mediterranean gazpacho. It makes a hit of V-8 look like amateur hour. The great part about gazpacho is it’s really a vegetable orgy; cucumbers, red bell peppers, cherry tomatoes, red onions, fennel, garlic. At this point readers often scream, imagining they’ll look like a bunch of nine-fingered piano players after all that veggie chopping. Believe me, I know—at culinary school, gazpacho prep is the equivalent of Ninja Knife Skills Boot Camp, where teachers walk around the kitchen with (I’m not kidding) rulers to make sure each veggie is uniformly diced. That’s nuts, and unnecessary; here we toss everything–veggies, spices, herbs, oil–all into Vinny the Vita Mix, add a little olive oil and shazam! It’s party time. I took this to an Independence Day dinner and poured out the cheer into shot glasses topped with a little avocado cream. You know you’re doing something right when everyone corners you for the recipe (I’m an easy touch on that one). This is like a drinking a Virgin Mary. No hangovers. Promise.
Gleaming black olives, dusty purple eggplants, emerald kale, a splash of scarlet tomatoes on freshly made golden corn tortillas. I cook with my eyes. Color matters, texture matters, flavor matters. I rarely use recipes. I find my art supplies at the farmer’s market on Saturday morning, and my favorite season is now, summer, when the market is brimming with seasonal surprises. Crisp sugar snap peas and sweet baby carrots (with ferny leaves still attached) to snack on. Red and golden beets, pink and white French breakfast radishes, organic blueberries, and Rainbow chard. I can smell the rosemary as I approach the herb table, and can’t leave without a bunch. There are 3 or 4 kinds of kale and pale green lettuces to melt in your mouth. The tomatoes are starting to come in, and little squashes, and tiny orange peppers so beautiful and hot you must use with caution. 6 kinds of mushrooms, purple potatoes, and new things each week. I never eat corn until it’s fresh in the farmer’s market. Cooking with the vibrant, fresh piles of produce that appear before you, rather than buying from a list, makes life intense and interesting. Slender asparagus, spring onions, and in late June, ruby red cherries. In my kitchen, my son and I chop and saute these lovely things, both familiar and new. We arrange our creations artfully, on plain or patterned plates, to appear to their best advantage. A fragrant treat for the eyes, redolent of the sun in which they grew, plucked by the strong hands of the farm crew, and cooked with love. What can I say but thank you.
Jo Cooper just retired after 9 years as Food As Medicine Program Manager and Director of Nutrition Programs at the Center, and is now our Marketing Director.
I wanted to create a fast versatile recipe that gives sweet cherries a little sass and attitude. This inflammation fighting salsa is lively and fresh whether it’s loaded into a fish taco, spooned over cooked sweet potato, mingled with cabbage and turned into a slaw, or eaten by the spoonful while wondering what to do next. Enjoy fresh cherries while in season….they will be gone in a blink!
Spring has sprung as nature’s magic unfolds before our eyes. Winter’s barren land is now a carpet of flowers and greens. Shopping at the farmer’s market puts the freshest veggies of the season on your plate but how else can you connect to nature’s rhythm? Sprouting edible seeds! Seeds carry almost everything needed to form into a plant. With a little water, the seed is awakened and life springs into action. Eating sprouted seeds is a way to capture the essence of spring and a plethora of nutrients.
I had to stop in the middle of eating my lunch just now because of how beautiful the colors are! This is a fall farm market feast, of small purple potatoes, crimini mushrooms, golden zucchini (!), squash blossoms, sweet red pepper and red onion with corn tortillas and arugula. Oh, YUM!
And easy. You may have noticed, that’s the only way I cook.
We have an announcement to make: we’re heading to Indianapolis, Indiana for Food As Medicine June 6 – 9, 2013! It will be our first time in the Midwest, and we couldn’t be more thrilled.
This is a mission-driven program for the Center. IU School of Medicine is about to become the largest medical school in the United States. Yes! Really! And– Indiana has one of the largest problems with obesity in the US. We want to be there, educating health professionals about the powerful tools of medical nutrition therapy and teaching ways of helping people fall in love with delicious, healthy whole foods!
Jeanne Wallace, PhD, CNC got a well-earned standing ovation first thing this morning for her brilliant Modulatinig Oncometabolic Syndrome: Integrative Diet & Nutrition to Complement Cancer Care. If there a Jeanne Wallace fan club, tell us how to join!
Many of us have long admired Brenda Davis, RD, as the eminent author of the authoritative texts on her lecture topic, Vegetarian, Vegan & Raw. Did you know about her remarkable research in the Marshall Islands on reversing diabetes? She gave us a preview and we look forward to the published paper. Core faculty member Cindy Geyer, MD rounded out a memorable morning and pulled it all together clinically with case studies in Condition-Specific Nutrition Therapies.
What a remarkable day, rich with diversity & texture. Elements of clinical practice this morning, with Cindy Geyer, MD leading us through Laboratory Basics and Kathie Swift, MS, RD sharing Simplifying Supplements. Supplement Jeopardy was a fun test of our knowledge! Lunch was utterly delicious: Rockin’ Black Bean Soup with Avocado Cream, greens, g/f cornbread muffins, Lime Citrus Halibut, Chef Stubb’s own plantain crisps, and Mexican slaw from Rebecca’s upcoming new book (gosh that was good! Lime cumin dressing…).
Great flow today, from Sheila Dean DSc, RD’s state-of-the-art science in Macro & Micro Nutrients to Joel Evans, MD’s remarkably smooth (and of course humorous!) Detoxification: A Food-Based Approach. Co-authors of The Inside Tract Gerard Mullin, MD and Kathie Swift, MS, RD provided When in Doubt, Follow the GUT and Digestive Healing & Elimination Diets respectively, an all-important guided tour of the essential science and clinical treatment of the digestive tract. Dr. Gordon led us in active meditation to shake out the stress, and Chef Rebecca Katz offered a brand new food demo this afternoon, Herbs & Spices: Science & Cuisine, with a tray of colorful spices and a tour of how they fit into the healing kitchen.