Culinary Nutrition News Ingredient of the Month

The Ingredient of the Month offers free downloadable tools featuring a new nutritional ingredient for chefs to incorporate into their menus and use in community events. The article provides an in-depth look at the nutrition ingredient, while the flyer and activity sheets are kid-friendly. Recipes range from simple recipes that kids can make to more detailed recipes for chefs. Download these tools, share with colleagues and start creating your nutritional recipe collection.

New Ingredient of the Month

November 2016 - Cranberries

Cranberries are a group of evergreen dwarf shrubs or trailing vines. They are low, creeping shrubs or vines up to 7 feet long and 2 to 8 inches in height. They have slender, wiry stems that are not thickly woody and have small evergreen leaves. The flowers that bloom from these plants are dark pink, with very distinct reflexed petals, leaving the style and stamens exposed and pointing forward. Cranberry shrubs and vines are pollinated by bees. Complete the quiz on www.acfchefs.org/CEH to earn one hour of continuing-education credits toward ACF certification.

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October 2016 - Cheese

Cheese is a food product that is created from milk that is produced in a wide array of flavors and textures by the thickening of the milk protein casein, which is a protein precipitated from milk, and forms the basis of cheese. It comprises proteins and fat from cows’ milk predominantly, but other types of milk are used as well, such as buffalo, goat or sheep’s milk. During production, milk is acidified and an enzyme called rennet is added to cause coagulation. Complete the quiz on www.acfchefs.org/CEH to earn one hour of continuing-education credits toward ACF certification.

September 2016 - Coconuts

Coconuts are technically considered a drupe, or a fruit with a central stone surrounded by a husk. Depending on the variety, the husk turns from green, red or yellow to brown as the coconut ripens. The coconut flesh is covered by a hairy hard brown shell. The hollow part inside the shell is filled with coconut water. The sweet-tasting coconut flesh goes from juicy and tender to slightly tough and fibrous as the fruit ripens. Young coconut water is refreshing and sweet with a slightly acidic taste. Coconut is available year-round with a peak season from October to December. Complete the quiz on www.acfchefs.org/CEH to earn one hour of continuing-education credits toward ACF certification.

August 2016 - Blackberries

Blackberries are typically a dark shade of purple and have a sweet, slightly tart and earthy flavor. Depending on the variety, they come in oval, round and elongated shapes. Blackberries can be enjoyed raw or cooked and are in season in the summer. Complete the quiz on www.acfchefs.org/CEH to earn one hour of continuing-education credits toward ACF certification.

July 2016 - Prickly Pear

Prickly pear is an oval-shaped fruit that ranges in skin color from yellow to purple. It has soft, spongy flesh that can be found in many different colors—white, green, yellow, red or purple—with edible black seeds. It has a sweet flavor similar to a blend of tropical fruits and is considered a superfruit. Complete the quiz on www.acfchefs.org/CEH to earn one hour of continuing-education credits toward ACF certification.

June 2016 - Asparagus

Asparagus is a nutrient-dense vegetable that comes from the early shoot of a plant in the lily family. The spears are commonly 6–8 inches tall and range in diameter from pencil-thin to jumbo-thick, depending on variety. They have a succulent taste and tender texture, and come in green and purple varieties. Complete the quiz on www.acfchefs.org/CEH to earn one hour of continuing-education credits toward ACF certification.

May 2016 - Dill

Full of vitamins, minerals and other health-promoting nutrients, dill is an aromatic herb that belongs to the carrot family. Dill leaves have a delicate grassy flavor, while dill seeds have a stronger, slightly bitter flavor. Enhance the flavor of your dishes by adding dill to sauces, potato salads and fish. Complete the quiz on www.acfchefs.org/CEH to earn one hour of continuing-education credits toward ACF certification.

April 2016 - Dragon Fruit

High in antioxidants, dragon fruit is considered a super fruit with vitamins and minerals that keep the body healthy and protect against aging, cancer and disease. The juicy red or white flesh has a mildly sweet flavor and is full of crunchy, edible seeds. Add dragon fruit to fish or shrimp tacos for a healthy, refreshing dish. Complete the quiz on www.acfchefs.org/CEH to earn one hour of continuing-education credits toward ACF certification.

March 2016 - Pecans

Did you know that pecans are technically considered a drupe? The pecan fruit has a green, fleshy outer husks that splits into four sections to reveal a single large seed, or “nut.” They are heart healthy and full of healthy nutrients. Complete the quiz on www.acfchefs.org/CEH to earn one hour of continuing-education credits toward ACF certification.

February 2016 - Black Rice

Black rice, also known as forbidden rice, is similar to brown rice and has a chewy texture with a rich, earthy and nutty flavor. It is considered a superfood and contains one of the highest levels of the antioxidant found in food. Complete the quiz on www.acfchefs.org/eculinary to earn one hour of continuing-education credits toward ACF certification.

January 2016 - Adzuki Beans

Adzuki beans are not well-known in the U.S. market, but they are gaining popularity as an easily digestible bean full of healthy nutrients. The small red/brown beans have a sweet, nutty flavor and can be used as a dry bean, fresh in the pod or as a crunchy sprout. Complete the quiz on www.acfchefs.org/eculinary to earn one hour of continuing-education credits toward ACF certification.

Check out previous articles released in 2010–15.

Our Partnership

The Chef & Child Foundation and Clemson University have partnered to offer monthly free downloadable guides featuring a new nutritional ingredient for chefs to incorporate into their menus. The articles provide up-to-date, professionally researched information on the latest in culinary nutrition trends.

Our Objective

ACFEF Chef & Child Foundation and Clemson University aim to combat the rise in rates of obesity and chronic diseases associated with poor diet behavior. Culinary nutrition is the integration of culinary skills and nutrition knowledge to create an innovative outlook on food prepared with culinary confidence and nutrition alertness. These articles will better serve and equip chefs nationwide with the needed knowledge and resources so they can promote culinary nutrition awareness in the United States.

About Clemson University

“Culinary nutrition” is the application of nutrition principles combined with food science knowledge displayed through a mastery of culinary skills. CU CHEFS® (Clemson University’s Cooking and Healthy Eating Food Specialists Outreach Services), led by Dr. Margaret Condrasky, promotes healthy foods research and applications for culinary professionals and the food industry. Ranked no. 25 among the nation’s top public institutions, Clemson University is a science-and engineering-oriented research university that maintains a strong commitment to teaching and student success.