Today’s Harvest

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Today I harvested the Parsely, Basil, and Cilantro growing behind theme – I honestly couldn’t believe how much I was able to trim from the baskets on the wall. And another pleasant surprise is how abundant even the small pots of herbs in my office are coming along! We are serving up tostadas tomorrow at lunch on Theme, and the Cilantro harvested today was added to the salsa this afternoon (it is a must to let the flavors of salsa come together overnight)

Make sure to come in at lunch tomorrow for fresh salsa, and one of the most popular meals we serve in Raymond – tostadas!

Grilled Pizza – Tonight!

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Come take a break from studying to make your own grilled pizza, tonight at 5:30pm outside of Ray! Chef Alexa and I will be out there helping you make your favorite pizza on this beautiful spring day. Some of your topping choice will be:

  • Arugula
  • Pepperoni
  • Bacon
  • Fresh Mozzarella
  • Shredded Parmesan

Stop by and see us!

A Raymond Hall Weigh-in

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The question often comes up, and even I become curious when someone asks “how many chicken nuggets do you actually serve on chicken nugget day in Raymond?”

I was expecting a large number, but 10,080 chicken nuggets?! Well that puts things into perspective a bit. It would take one person eating 27 chicken nuggets per day for an entire year to finish that amount!

This of course made me wonder how some of the other popular items in Raymond stack up, each day, to your beloved chicken nuggets, and here is what we have…

  • 1,344 pieces of grilled chicken
  • 900 fried eggs
  • 80 lbs of pasta – and if we are serving pasta on classics? Add another 100 lbs to that.
  • 150 lbs of french fries – add a whopping 420 lbs extra to that on chicken nugget day.
  • 320 lbs of bananas
  • 48 lbs of spinach
  • 120 lbs of romaine
  • 60 lbs of hummus

 

That is a lot of food….

 

Tonight, I will be attending a presentation that will give us exact amounts of how much food is wasted, when students eyes are bigger than their stomachs. Tomorrow I will pots about the results of their project – and based on what i already know, I think we are in for quite the surprise…

Fender Blender

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We had a lot of fun using the Fender Blender Yesterday! Thanks to everyone who helped us make pedal powered smoothies, and to the Providence College Cycling Club for helping us put both the event and the bike together! This Sunday, April 27th, join the PC Cycling Club at Market Square in downtown Providence for a day of collegiate cycling competitions along with food trucks, music, and many other vendors. The event will be from 8am-6pm and races will happen at different times throughout the day!

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Rock the Bike!

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Join us today in Raymond, as we continue to celebrate Earth Week! Today during lunch we will have a pedal-powered smoothie maker called the “Fender Blender” where you can hop on up and blend your own smoothie using fresh & healthy ingredients. For more information, check out the “Rock the Bike” Website.

http://rockthebike.com/about/

Earth Day

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Every year, more than 190 countries celebrate Earth Day on April 22nd – a date that was actually chosen to help maximize college campus participation. This day is meant to bring awareness and provoke thought about environmental protection.

Today in Raymond we will be celebrating at both lunch and dinner, and highlighting local and sustainable foods from the New England area. Choosing to buy local helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions because the need for transportation is virtually eliminated, as is some of the need for refrigerated storage. In 2006, a United Nations report revealed that raising livestock in large factory farms generates more greenhouse gas emissions than all the cars, trucks, trains, ships, and planes in the world combined – a large environmental impact indeed.

There is a community and social benefit of local food also, including education about food and how it is grown when members of a community come together to support community gardens and farmers markets.

 

Today we will be offering the following items in Raymond, and much more:

Local Fish from Red’s Best in Boston at Dinner

Tomatoes from Backyard Farms in Madison, ME

Butternut squash from Pioneer Valley Growers association in South Deerfield, MA

Potatoes are from Green Thumb Farms, located in Fryeburg, ME

A salad dressing at Theme made using Herbs grown right here in Raymond Hall – doesn’t get much more local than that!

 

 

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All about Eggs

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Considering the Easter Bunny shares his fame with the egg, and we go through about 900 shell eggs at Centerstage each day in Raymond, I thought a little information about eggs would be very appropriate today!

One shell egg contains about 70 calories and 6 grams of protein – a great addition to any healthy breakfast for sure. One of the greatest nutrition debates of all time is about the egg – Does it raise cholesterol? Should we limit our intake? Should I just eat egg whites? Isn’t it all saturated fat? Of the total fat in an egg, only about 27% is saturated fat, and although it is found in the yolk, so are all of the vitamins and minerals. Think about it this way: an egg contains all of the nutrients necessary to begin life! They contain a powerful enough combination of amino acids, fatty acids, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that you will not find in any other food. As for limiting intake? With any food, good or bad, you can have too much of a good thing. Although I prefer not to give an exact number, it is best to switch up breakfast protein options so you get a mix of nutrition from all different foods. 

Now to the fun part: cooking with eggs. The options are limitless, and once you have masters a few techniques, you’ll be adding eggs to foods you have never considered before – Poached eggs with hollandaise sauce on top of Crab Cakes anyone? OK, so I won’t start with poached eggs – those will come much later in your egg cookery career. How about an omelet?

 

Start by beating two eggs in a bowl, using a whisk. Add about 1/2 tablespoon of butter (or a heat withstanding cooking oil like grapeseed oil) to a small saute pan over medium heat, and swirl until the pan is nicely coated. This is the time where I add pre-cooked peppers & mushrooms and a pinch of kosher salt. Make sure to heat the ingredients fully, then add your whipped eggs to the pan, swirling to coat the vegetables. as soon as the eggs are added, use a rubber spatula and gently lift the edges of the egg allowing uncooked egg to touch the surface of the pan. Go all the way around, until there is little to no liquid egg left on top of the mixture. At this time you can either book-fold your omelet or simply fold it in half. Remove from the pan immediately, to avoid any browning of the omelet. I prefer to sprinkle cheese on top after the omelet is removed from the pan, so I do not over do it on the cheddar.

Once you have mastered omelet cooking, move onto something like soft-boiled eggs. To be perfectly honest? one of the best ways to learn a cooking technique is to watch a video. So head to you-tube and search for a poached egg video before you try it on your own – because trust me, that one requires a bit more guidance!

 

 

 

Hunger on College Campuses

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Even though higher education is seen as the most important factor of long-term financial security, the cost of tuition and living expenses has increased dramatically in the past few years. Students are opting to live off campus to save money, and even those with the best budgets for living expenses find themselves having to make unexpected cuts – which is often made up for by skipping meals. Factor this into attending school in an already expensive geographical location, and it’s a quick path to food insecurity. Some universities now have food pantries where students in need can anonymously pick up supplemental foods, when they run out of meal swipes or cannot afford to buy groceries.

Think about adding the stress of school, on to the stress about where you will find your next meal. This can lead to poor academic performance as a result of not only the anxieties, but because when your aren’t properly fueled you simply cannot perform.

To read the full article from The Washington Post, follow the link below.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/more-college-students-battle-hunger-as-education-and-living-costs-rise/2014/04/09/60208db6-bb63-11e3-9a05-c739f29ccb08_story.html

6 Food Myths Debunked

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Sarah Hines:

Great information about common nutrition practices!

Originally posted on TIME:

Nutrition advice comes so fast and furious, sometimes it’s hard to keep track of what’s good and what’s bad for you. And oftentimes when that advice is boiled down to a hard and fast rule, that rule becomes, well, slightly untrue. So we asked some nutrition experts to identify the more common food myths we hear, and the truth behind them.

MYTH: Microwaving foods kills nutrients

Microwaving is actually among the more preferable ways of keeping all the good things in foods like vegetables intact. Boiling can leech out valuable vitamins and minerals, but because microwaving heats up food without using a lot of water, it helps foods to stay nutrient-packed.

MYTH: The more grains, the better

While grains are certainly preferable to refined white flour because they contain more fiber and vitamin B, don’t fall into the multigrain trap. Just because a product has multiple different grains doesn’t mean…

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A Providence Restaurant Bucket List

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Seniors, you have just over a month left until Graduation Day, a momentous day indeed. With time ticking away, and many of you moving back to your home states, you may be thinking “did I accomplish everything I set out to during my time in Providence?”. When you first arrived four years ago, you may have thought moving to the smallest state in the union would be oh-so-boring, just like I did back in 2009. Hopefully at this point you have had the opportunity to travel around the great little city of providence, and experience the immense amount of culture it has to offer. 

The restaurant scene in Providence is an absolute must. There are some seriously crave-able (and affordable) meals in this city, and I want to share some of my favorite college spots…

Providence Coal Fired Pizza – Westminister Street. This is truly the perfect place for a large group of friends – order a bunch of pizzas to share, and do not forget the wings. This place has the best wings I have ever had. Roasted with the perfect seasonings (don’t ask, because they won’t tell!) and topped with crispy roasted onions, these wings are something you will dream about.

Red Stripe – Wayland Square. Oh, you’ve never had a grilled cheese with poached pear, prosciutto, and basil pesto? Well then you aren’t living. Red Stripe serves up this incredible sandwich with your choice of house frites (fancy and delicious house cut french fries) or roasted tomato soup. My advice – choose the soup and order a side of frites. The frites come with a garlic aioli, a sauce that when mixed with a bit of ketchup is every bit as delicious as those crispy little fries.

Loie Fullers – Westminister Street. Let me start off with the fact that I am in love with New Orleans, and on my first trip, the only goal I had was to eat as many Beignets as one person could handle – moderation out the window. I came close to actually turning into a Beignet, until I realized that even in New Orleans you cannot get a crispy little french doughnut like you can at Loie Fullers in Providence. They dust it with a seasoned powdered sugar and serve it with a perfect seasonal fruit compote.

Harry’s Bar & Burger – North Main Street. Itchin’ for a burger? Head to Harry’s and get sliders served on toasty little potato rolls that will not disappoint. Whats more? They source local ingredients, and if your over 21, the craft beer selection is bound to make you a regular customer. 

Tortilla Flats – Hope Street. If you like Mexican, Cajun (they have crawdad’s!), and southwestern flavors this is your kind of place. The prices are great, and you always get a good meal. It’s a busy, noisy atmosphere which spells fun for any group of college seniors. Again, if you’re over 21 try the coconut margarita – it is truly a tropical paradise in a glass.

 

This is a very select few of the restaurants I frequented in college, and still frequent today. There are oh so many more that you should check out during your last few weeks here, so take a weekend and run around providence with your friends so you don’t miss a thing. And I know most of you use “Yelp”, which I think come very much in handy when finding the right place to eat!