Thursday, March 14, 2013

Food Fear Factor

Food Fear Factor

Food Fear Factor flyer posted around campus
Today, the Wellness Education Program at Lehman College held an event, Food Fear Factor from 12:00-2:00PM. On my lunch break, I went to check it out and had a good time watching students eat the samples offered. Samples to try were: Wasabi Peas, Red Curry Paste, Lychee, Cactus Dulce, Dates, White Asparagus, Cascos de Guyaba, Beaten Rice and Kefir. The food samples were set up as a blind tasting and after students ate what was offered on each table, they were shown a card with a description of what they ate and background information on it. I have added this information preceeding each photograph.

Welness Education & Promotion Program
I have eaten half of the food in this event. My hubby Allen loves Wasabi Peas and I have enjoyed eating these, though they are a bit too spicy for me. We frequently eat White Asparagus and cook with Red Curry Paste in Asian cuisine. I tasted Lychee in Chinatown in a smoothie and thought it was yummy, and like Dates in desserts. Guayaba, I have loved since I was a kid because my Mom used it as a filling in Dominican Cake. Also, it is sold with Dulce de Leche candy in Dominican grocery stores where I grew up in Washington Heights. The other samples Kefir, Cactus Dulce, and Beaten Rice I have not had before, but enjoyed taking pics of students and seeing their reactions. A lot of people disliked the Cactus Dulce and White Asparagus. One student thought the Cactus Dulce was a Jalapeno.

Lehman College Student Eating A Cricket
Lychee is a juicy tropical fruit popular in many Southeast Asia countries. Lychee is a rich source of vitamin C, B-complex vitamins and a good source of dietary fiber.

Lychee With Blueberry, Eyeball anyone?
Lehman College Student About To Eat White Asparagus
White Asparagus - The white variety of asparagus has the same flavor as the green spears. Considered a delicacy in Europe, white asparagus, gets its look because of the way it's grown. The plant is either covered with plastic or by mounds of dirt to avoid the sun's rays. It's a good source of vitamins C and A.

White Asparagus
Lehman Students Eating Cactus Dulce

Cactus Dulce - Edible cactus is also known as nopales, nopalitos or cactus pads. This vegetable is popular in Mexico and other Central American countries. Cactus pads contain beta carotene, iron, some B vitamins, and are food sources of both vitamin C and calcium.
Cactus Dulce
Red Curry Paste - Curry pastes are used in Thai, Indonesian, Malaysian and Indian cooking. The most versatile and widely used in red curry paste, it's a mash of red chiles, coriander roots and leaves, shrimp paste, lemon grass, garlic, shallots and galangal. It's used in chicken, duck, beef, pork and shrimp and flavors everything from stews, curries and soups to dressings, marinades and condiments.

Red Curry Paste
Kefir is a fermented milk drink made with kefir grains. Kefir is a drink popular across Eastern and Northern Europe, and in Russia. Kefir is a source of probiotics, live organisms (like bacteria and yeast) that, when consumed in certain amounts, exert health benefits. Kefir is rich in protein, calcium, B vitamins and potassium.

Dates are popular in Middle Eastern countries and offered to guests as a sign of hospitality. Dates contain a good amount of fiber, anti-oxidants, and minerals.

Beaten Rice is an easily digestible form of raw rice and is very popular across Nepal, India and Bangladesh. It is normally used to prepare snacks or light and easy fast food in a variety of Indian cuisine styles, some even for long-term consumption of a week or more.

Beaten Rice
Wasabi Peas - Wasabi is a Japanese condiment similar to horseradish. While the Japanese often eat it with sushi, wasabi also helps season a favorite American snack, wasabi peas. These peas are either roasted or fried and seasoned with a combination of wasabi, salt and other flavorings. They make a crunchy and spicy snack. Since peas are a vegetable, wasabi peas have some nutritional benefits, including calcium and fiber.

Wasabi Peas
At the end of the event there was a giveaway for a Kindle Fire. Lehman student, Pamela Sanchez won so congrats to her! The Lehman College students that attended Food Fear Factor were very brave and ate Crickets like it was no big deal. I applaud them. Maybe next time, the Wellness Education Program will add more bugs like bamboo worms, and take it to the next level.

-Sophia/Two Frys

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