Cooking up Change (Part three)

The last and final installment about my series on Cooking up Change. Read the first and second part to get caught up.

Back to the Bridgeport Art Center where the place was filling up with hungry guests.

From North-Grand High School: “The NG Spiced Turkey Wrap, Sweet and Spicy Rice, Nine Treasure Salad”

 From Manley Career Academy: “Black Bean and Corn Cakes with Dirty Rice, Roasted Siced Sweet Potatoes, Apple Slaw”

 I like reading  these menus

 From Harper High School, “Blackened Chicken with Garden Vegetables over Rotini Alfredo, Sauteed Collard Greens, Romaine Salad.”


From Dunbar Career Academy, “Buffalo Ranch Chicken Wrap, Sweet Potato Supreme, Tomato White Bean Soup:”

Corliss High School had an interesting display. The vase contained all of the ingredients (minus the flour) of the bars they made for the healthy snack part of the competition.

 Here are the bars, looking delectable!

And the chefs themselves!

 All of a sudden it was time to announce the winners of the challenge.

 Pictured here on stage (from left to right): Chef David Blackmon, CPS Program Coordinator for Culinary Arts & Hospitality; Rochelle Davis, Executive Director of the Healthy Schools Campaign; Bob Bloomer, Chartwells-Thompson Hospitality; and Enrique Rodriguez, Reporter and Weekend Anchor for Univision (Master of Ceremonies for Cooking up Change).

And the winners were Chicago Vocational Career Academy!

 I didn’t get the best shot as everyone was rushing to their booth to congratulate the winners and have another taste!

The menu included, “Oven-Fried Chicken with Dinner Roll, Cousins (the sauteed greens), and Sweet Potato Salad.”

Running the credits on a terrific night thinking about school food in a new way.

Five Important takeaways: 

1) Student empowerment — Give kids the chance to participate in creating menus, tasting foods, and preparing meals and they make healthy choices.

2) Greens are in — The students prepared a lot of greens both sauteed and fresh. Take note meal planners.

3) Bye, bye white spuds — Hello Congress? No tray contained traditional potatoes. However, there was a lot of sweet potato. Mmmm.

4) Getting “wrapped” up — Many schools created wraps — I think I’ve spotted a new trend in school food.

5) Vegetarian without the cheese — Some of the meals were meatless, but didn’t have processed cheese AND still met the USDA standards for a reimbursable meal. Let’s get rid of processed cheese, which is incredibly high in sodium.

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2 thoughts on “Cooking up Change (Part three)

  1. One more thing, when I heard about your story on NPR I wanted to read about the terrible lunches you blogged about. That is what parents need to know about! Instead I had to do quite a lot of navigating through all of the progress storries. I think it is great that things are changing in many places but most places need to see the old posts,up in center first thing when they google your blog. Parents need to know what they are missing.

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