Thursday, March 7, 2013

Chef's Touch

Pin It Chef's Touch - March 4, 2013 - Montefiore Hospital, Bronx, NY

Celebrity Chef Tom Valenti
I attended a great community event this week at Montefiore Hospital in the Bronx, NY. The event titled, Chef's Touch was a great food cooking demonstration with question and answer interaction. Montefiore hosted this event in their auditorium and in a conference room adjoined to the cooking demonstration. The celebrity chef was Tom Valenti from Manhattan who has authored several cookbooks. Chef Tom had a great personality and answered all questions from the large audience. Chef Tom discussed healthy eating and gave many examples of good and bad for you foods. He was also very comical, yet sincere and happy to show and share his cooking knowledge. Chef Tom's Sous Chef for the evening was Dr. Peter Selwyn, M.D. from Montefiore Hospital. Chef Peter as he was called for the eve made a healthy, homemade vinagrette with all fresh ingredients. This dressing is a much healthier salad dressing than one you would buy at the supermarket.

Chef Tom Valenti and Dr. Peter Selwyn, M.D.
Chef Tom and his sous Chef made some great dishes in the auditorium. There was a demonstration on how to make Slow Cooked Chicken in a pot, as well as Root Vegetable Stew with Cumin, Coriander and Millet among the ingredients.

After the long and informative cooking demo, these dishes were served to us in the adjoining conference room. We dined on Chicken, Vegetable Stew, Braised Kale, Healthy Salad Greens and Fruit Salad. All the food I ate tasted great and is good for you, which was the whole point of the event.

Also, there was a raffle event held for some prizes. I was actually drawn in the raffle and won a $100 gift certificate to Fresh Direct in the Bronx. I cannot wait to order some fresh veggies and fruits online from Fresh Direct with my prize. Fresh Direct was one of the sponsors of the event. Attendees received a gift bag with recipe cards from the dishes cooked at the event, kitchen goodies, a set of measuring spoons, apron with Chef's Touch embroidery and Montefiore logo.

Chef Tom discussing healthy foods 
Chef's Touch highlighted via a Powerpoint presentation just how bad eating habits and Diabetes are in the Bronx. Very high percentages of people surveyed in the Bronx, drank sugary drinks daily and many did not eat fresh vegetables and fruits on a daily basis.

The Chef's Touch cooking event was held to help the community cook healthier for better health. As previously mentioned, the audience interacted great with Chef Tom. A variety of questions were covered about deglazing meats, using fresh vs. dried herbs, leaving skin on or off chicken when cooking (yes to cook, but remove if you want to save calories), allergy concerns to seeds and grains, cooking oils, and broths. There was even a live demo on how to butcher a Chicken, and was helpful to anyone that may not know how to do this.

Chef Tom brought up a good tidbit on food labels and said, just because a food or snack states it is healthy you have to read the label since it can be very misleading. You have to read the labels and know what you are eating.

Due to unhealthy eating, data presented showed that kids today do not live as long as people used to. A Chef's Touch was a great event and much needed in the Bronx. The Bronx needs more of these great healthy eating demos. Montefiore, Chef Tom, the sponsors and staff put on a great event.

Healthy Food  Recipes Served to attendees.
I attended the event with my good friend Barbara, host of Food For All People another Bronx based website you should check out.

-Allen/Two Frys

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