The Culinary Insider - June 6, 2011 (Vol. IX, Issue 12)

Tornado and Flood Disaster Relief

Our heartfelt condolences go out to the people affected by the recent tornados and flooding. ACFEF’s Disaster Relief Fund is here to help affected members. You can help your fellow members by donating to the fund. More

AAC 2011–2013 Election Results

The American Academy of Chefs The American Academy of Chefs (AAC) is pleased to announce that Stafford DeCambra, CEC, CCE, CCA, AAC, has been elected national chair of the Academy, and Mark Wright, CEC, AAC, has been elected as national vice chair. DeCambra, a Fellow in good standing since 1991, is currently the Academy’s vice chair. Wright, a fellow in good standing since 1994 and currently AAC’s Scholarship Committee chair, formerly served as ACF’s Northeast Region vice president for the 2005–2009 term. Both will be sworn in to serve the 2011–2013 term during the Academy Fellow’s Meeting at the ACF National Convention, July 22–26, in Dallas. More

Preview our Big Summer Sale!

Happy Chef Uniforms

Be the first to save up to 60% off Happy Chef products. Act fast—many are the last in stock! See which apparel & accessories are on sale, plus save on hundreds of other items when you buy more. Summer’s around the corner, but the hottest deals have already arrived at Happy Chef!

MyPlate: USDA’s Food Icon Launched ACF National President Michael Ty, CEC, AAC, joined First Lady Michelle Obama, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Surgeon General Regina Benjamin on June 2, as they unveiled the USDA’s new food icon, MyPlate, that will serve as a reminder to help consumers make healthier food choices. The intent of MyPlate is to prompt consumers to think about building a healthy plate at meal times and emphasizes the fruit, vegetable, grain, protein and dairy food groups. More

ACF 2011–2013 Board of Directors Announced June 10

Voting for the 2011–2013 national American Culinary Federation (ACF) Board of Directors closed May 23 at midnight HST. All voting members by proxy ballot are invited to attend a meeting on June 10 at 10 a.m. EDT at the ACF headquarters, 180 Center Place Way, St. Augustine, Fla., at which the results will be announced. The results will also be posted on the ACF website upon notification of the winners.

Canadian Beef—Fatten your profits with Thin Meats

Canadian Beef [PDF] Beef isn’t just about steaks and ground beef at foodservice. There is a world of opportunity with less well-known cuts, for example thin meats. These “hidden gems” offer interesting cuts with great flavor, enhanced profitability and a chance to differentiate your menu from the competition. The tri tip is big news at foodservice, with great sirloin flavor this cost effective cut can be utilized a number of ways. The tri tip steak is a perfect choice for a steak sandwich—just the right size and profit profile for this classic offering. Read more and learn how your chapter can arrange for a Canadian beef seminar.

Chefs Move to Schools Cookware Kits

If you answered the First Lady’s call and joined the Chefs Move to Schools initiative, cooking kits donated by All-Clad and valued at approximately $2,000 are available for participating schools and nonprofits facilitating chef engagement in schools. The kits include high quality cookware, an induction burner, knives and other equipment to help you engage kids and parents in healthy cooking. Share Our Strength has teamed up with Let’s Move to offer a streamlined process to register your chef-school pairing and apply for the kits all at once. Learn more or apply.

2011 Student Culinarian Invitational Teams Announced


Congratulations to the five teams named to participate in ACF’s first-ever Student Culinarian Invitational, a culinary event designed to foster mentorship and nurture culinary excellence. The following teams were selected to cook at the Student Culinarian Invitational Fundraiser Reception, on July 23 during ACF’s national convention in Dallas:

  • Central: ACF Greater Kansas City Chefs Association
  • Northeast: ACF Professional Chefs Association of South Jersey
  • Southeast: ACF First Coast Chapter
  • Western: ACF Bay Area Chefs Association of Oregon
  • At-large team, Central: ACF Professional Chefs and Culinarians of the Heartland

Learn more about the teams and their menus and purchase a ticket to the reception to taste their creations.

The Center for the Advancement of Foodservice Education

CAFE 2011 Professional-Development Events

  • Teaching Strategies/Best Practices, Providence, June
  • Leadership Through New Ideas, Providence, June
  • Sustainability Conference, Chicago, July
  • International Desserts, San Diego, August
  • Catering Operations/Curriculum, October

Approved for ACF continuing-education hours!

For more information on 2011 CAFÉ events, to read this month’s “Gold Medal Classroom” or to sign up for regular updates on CAFÉ programs, news and opportunities for foodservice educators and culinary trainers, visit

Kristin Swaggart Wins Be Like Mike

Kristin Swaggart

Kristin Swaggart of Kennewick, Wash., a culinary arts student at Walla Walla Community College, Walla Walla, Wash., was named winner of the ACF Be Like “Mike” contest and will shadow ACF National President Michael Ty, CEC, AAC, at the 2011 ACF National Convention in Dallas. Swaggart, a member of ACF Northwest Wine Country Chapter, was selected from a host of candidates. More

The Scoop on Sodium

Bowl of salt Though chefs tend to use “salt” and “sodium” interchangeably, there is a difference. The sodium used in cooking is sodium chloride, commonly known as table salt. Table salt is 40 percent sodium and 60 percent chloride. Salt is one of the most common seasonings and an important food preservative. Aside from adding a distinct flavor to many food dishes, salt also binds ingredients, enhances colors and serves as a stabilizer.

Sodium is an essential electrolyte to every animal’s diet, but only in small quantities. Today, there is ongoing discussion about the effect of excess sodium in our diets and what quantifies this excess. Read more in June’s issue of “Culinary Nutrition News,” The Scoop on Sodium, sponsored by French’s Foodservice and provided through a partnership between ACFEF Chef & Child Foundation and Clemson University.