Detailed Program Schedule

Tuesday, June 5

7:00 AM Light, Healthy New England Breakfast

Campus Center Blue Wall

7:00 AM Registration

Campus Center Auditorium

8:15 AM General Session XII

Campus Center Auditorium

Plant-Based Opportunity: A Snapshot from Datassential’s Plant-Based Keynote Report
Plant-based eating is far from an all-or-nothing proposition – a growing number of consumers, today’s “flexitarians,” are cutting back on animal-based foods and aspiring to eat more plants. This short session highlights a few key findings from Datassential’s Plant-Based Eating Keynote Report, including which types of plant-based foods are most popular and fastest growing on menus, how consumers perceive and consume plant-based and functional foods, and the outlook for plant-based meat and dairy alternatives.

Speaker: Marie Molde, RD (Client Solutions, Datassential, Chicago, IL)

8:30 AM General Session XIII

Campus Center Auditorium

Nutrition and Health – The Good, the Bad, the Ugly!
Learn from the expert how to promote healthy diet and lifestyle.

Speaker: Eric Rimm (Professor of Epidemiology and Nutrition and Director of the Program in Cardiovascular Epidemiology at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Professor of Medicine at the Harvard Medical School, Brookline, MA)

9:00 AM General Session XIV

Campus Center Auditorium

Ingredient Revolution Drives Changes in Corporate Dining
Mark Freeman from Microsoft will discuss how the customer is driving change in Corporate dining menus, technology and customer experiences. He will share some of the new and exciting things going on at the Microsoft Campus related to farming, slow food movement, and culinary advances through technology.

Speaker: Mark Freeman (Senior Manager of Global Dining for Microsoft Corporation, Seattle, WA)

9:30 AM Industry Presentations

Campus Center Auditorium

Bush Brothers & Company
American Lamb Board
Impossible Foods

9:45 AM Refreshment and Networking Break

Campus Center Auditorium

10:00 AM Culinary Demonstrations IV

Campus Center Auditorium

Interracial Protein Marriage
Chef: Jehangir Mehta (Chef/Owner Graffiti, Me & You, and Mehtaphor, New York, NY)

Peanuts to Potlikker: A Study of Traditional Southern Vegetables and Nuts with a Demonstration of Plant-Based Recipes
The South has long been an agricultural based economy. With a 12-month growing season there is something coming out of the ground or off the tree every month out of the year. From the farming knowledge of enslaved Africans to the scientific wisdom of Dr. George Washington Carver to modern cutting edge environmentally sustainable techniques at White Oak Pastures, the largest organic farm in Georgia, the South continues to move forward with agriculture. In this demonstration, Virginia will review the history and origin of traditional Southern ingredients such as collard greens, sweet potatoes, okra, pecans, and peanuts and demonstrate a selection of plant-based dishes appropriate for college campuses.

Chef: Virginia Willis (Chef and Cookbook Author, Atlanta, GA)

Water & Fire Cooking – A Secret of Japanese Cuisine
A question has been posed to me for this Food Forward conference, “If we employ more vegetables, fruits and sustainable lean protein such as fish and poultry in our menu planning, are we making healthier dishes for our customers?” The answer is, yes, but that is not a complete answer.
In this 20 minutes lecture and demonstration Hiroko Shimbo introduces and explains how Japanese cuisine can make the answer to the question more definitive and complete. The techniques for preparing these healthful ingredients are equally important. Water & Fire Cooking, the backbone of Japanese cuisine contrasts with the Oil & Fire Cooking techniques of many other Western and Eastern cuisines. Japanese cuisine prepared by Water & Fire cooking techniques certainly focuses on the use of seasonal, sustainable, fresh, whole ingredients resulting in little waste, and in moderation of consumption. There is no emphasis on particular “superfood”. There is in Japanese cuisine a deep appreciation for the wide variety of ingredients that nature brings to us as food to our table. In addition, there is the strong emphasis in the cuisine on utilizing these healthful Water & Fire Cooking techniques that are designed to preserve the nutrition, flavors, textures and appearance of the carefully selected ingredients.

Chef: Hiroko Shimbo (Chef Instructor, Consulting Chef and Author, New York, NY)

10:40 AM Refreshment and Networking Break

Campus Center Auditorium

10:50 AM General Session XV

Campus Center Auditorium

The Power of Specialty Food
Specialty food is the fastest growing, some might say most disruptive, segment of food – with sales that grew eight times faster than that of all food last year. American consumers are embracing new tastes and methods of food prep and presentation. Discover how specialty food trends anticipate menu trends and how you can leverage specialty flavors into your business.

Speaker: Phil Kafarkis (President, Specialty Food Association, New York, NY)

11:20 AM Industry Presentations

Campus Center Auditorium
Avocados from Mexico
National Peanut Board
Cholula Foodservice

11:30 AM General Session XVI

Campus Center Auditorium

Food Talk: Embracing the Changing Landscape of Food
Similar to ‘TED Talk’ format, let’s hear from our peers in sharing their thoughts, insight and best practices


    • Rafi Taherian (Associate Vice President for Yale Hospitality) Robert Holden (Associate Vice President for Auxiliary Services, University of Georgia)
    • Paul R. Houle, CEC (Director of Campus Dining Services, University of Colorado Boulder)
    • Moderated by Marie Molde, RD (Client Solutions, Datassential, Chicago, IL)

12:30 PM General Session XVII

Campus Center Auditorium

Radical Traditional Farming
During the 150 plus years that the Harris Family has owned and operated White Oak Pastures, the operation has turned full cycle. From a farm that valued its animals, land and community over all else- to a centralized, industrialized and commoditized, monoculture farm- and back to a regenerative, humane and fair farm.

Speaker: Will Harris (Owner and Cattleman, White Oak Pastures, Bluffton, GA)

1:00 PM Industry Reception /Lunch

Campus Center Blue Wall

2:30 PM Workshops

Hampshire Dining Commons

Sustainable Menus and Humble Ingredients
Chef Jody Adams will be working through 4 recipes during the workshop. The recipes will be highlighting a sustainable menu using humble ingredients without sacrificing flavor.

Chef: Jody Adams (Chef Consultant, Boston, MA)

Vegetable Mexican Kitchen
Learn and prepare common and rare vegetables of the Mexican Kitchen, from traditional dishes to modern preparations in an ever-changing environment.

Chef: Iliana de la Vega (Chef Owner, El Naranjo Restaurant, Austin, TX)

Is Plant Matter the Maximum Flavor?
A 16 oz. steak, accompanied by a medley of roasted vegetables, and a zesty, bright herb sauce to garnish. Within the most beautifully cooked piece of meat lies a singular texture, a product that is inherently the center of the plate in the day to day meals that are predominantly enjoyed in this country. And while the perceived energy or focus might lie within the steak in the center, it is the vegetables on the side and the sauce on top that provide the excitement of texture and “life” more vividly than any protein ever could. As we pursue different flavors and textures in food it is the plants that continue to be our inspiration and drive our recipes. With the traditions of Italy and flavors from Asia to South America, please join us as we pose the question of flavor and where it truly lies.

Chef: Jeffery Maxfield (Executive Chef, BRAVA by Brad Kilgore, Miami, FL)

You have always enjoyed a piping hot bowl of ramen, from eating packaged ramen during your student budget days, to the regional ramen houses of Japan, to the current national ramen craze. Chefs like David Chang and Ivan Orkin have embraced ramen in more creative ways than we can count.
If you’re one of those people who has voiced your strong opinion via food blogs about who makes the best ramen in town, if you know the cool ramen chefs by their first name, or if you just crave the steaming bowls of the brothy noodles for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, then isn’t it time you learn to make your own?
Join Chef Alexander Ong, chef emeritus of San Francisco’s Betelnut restaurant, to learn how to make a flavorful shoyu broth, a rich soy milk broth and also make our own ramen noodles. In addition to making the broths and noodles, we’ll roast off a crispy pork belly, make our own soy sauce eggs, and make our own Japanese fried chicken. Our goal is to equip you with the knowledge and confidence to make your own ramen noodles at home or work to share with your colleagues and family.

Chef: Alexander Ong (Chef Consultant, San Francisco, CA)

World Eats from World Streets- Harnessing Flavor First Plant-Forward Cuisines From Around the World
Discovering, adapting, and modernizing ancient global street food recipes that generations have been eating for centuries has become my passion. This year’s presentation features unusual, authentic street foods sampled during my recent world travels. Most of these recipes are simply brilliant as they are inherently healthy, plant-forward dishes that pair bold flavor, unexpected textures, and are typically inexpensive to prepare. Some date back centuries, but are still in vogue primarily because of the rise in interest of consuming less protein and more plants. Seeking out these dishes has become my primary tool in the exploration of foreign cultures and cuisines and provides the best way to immerse one’s self in extraordinary places. Come along on this armchair adventure into flavorful street foods from around the world!

Chef: Steven Petusevsky (Chef and Culinary Innovator, Plantation, FL)

Kitchen Gleaning
Navigating paths to create a blended diet through the art of gleaning produce through the kitchen.

Chef: Jehangir Mehta (Chef/Owner Graffiti, Me & You, and Mehtaphor, New York, NY)

Water & Fire Cooking – A Secret of Japanese Cuisine
At this workshop attendees will learn the techniques of Japanese Water & Fire Cooking using representative recipes from the Japanese kitchen. These include the important skills for preparing classical dashi and vegetarian stocks, simmered foods, grilled foods, stir-frying with minimal oil usage and creation of mixed rice dishes. In this workshop attendees will learn the presentation of these dishes in both informal and more formal ways. The attendees will also be introduced to shio- koji, a condiment made from koji rice (malted rice in which the starch has been converted to sugars). Chef Hiroko will explain its role in the fermentation process of sake and miso, and she will demonstrate how to make shio-koji and use it in the preparation of several dishes. The Workshop will discuss the basic constituents of a frugal but well-balanced Japanese meal known as Ichi-ju Isai – one rice dish, one soup dish and one side dish; a construction derived from Zen Buddhist temple cuisine. With the knowledge and skills acquired at this workshop attendees can prepare more meaningful, more varied, healthier and delicious dishes in their own kitchens.

Chef: Hiroko Shimbo (Chef Instructor, Consulting Chef and Author, New York, NY)

How to Accommodate Authentic Thai flavors for the American Palate
Learn how to cook amazing Thai food from Award winning Chef Chai Siriyarn from Marnee Thai restaurant in San Francisco, which has been voted as one of the top Thai restaurants in the Bay Area by Zagat Survey for over 2 decades and was recommended in the Michelin Guide for 3 consecutive years. In this course you will learn a 5 course meal that is easy to prepare in large volumes which you can apply to your establishment. The menu includes Chicken Korae (Southern Thai style curried chicken kebab), Herbal rice salad, Pad Kee Mao (drunken noodle), Hor Mok (steam fish fillet in curry mousse) and a traditional Thai desert “Ta Go” which is coconut pudding.

Chef: Chai Siriyarn (Chef/Owner of Marnee Thai Restaurant, San Francisco, CA)

A Farm to Table Tapestry: Weaving a Farm into your Food Service Operation
Our farm and restaurant business is like a tapestry made of many different threads. The magic comes when these threads are woven together. In this workshop we will tease out the various threads that make up our operation: From seasonality to menu writing, staff training, and a few tractor driving tips to boot. Join us in this hands-on workshop as we cook several dishes that weave together the themes of flexibility, creativity and deliciousness.

Chefs: Eric and Jill Skokan (Black Cat Organic Farm, Longmont, CO)

Tavola, A Celebration of the Sun-Drenched Mediterranean
For the last year, I have been working with Ken Toong, Van Sullivan and Chef Matthia to develop TAVOLA, a Mediterranean Kitchen. Inspired by a love for healthy, robust Mediterranean food, this new concession opened in the Blue Wall in the UMass Campus Center last September with great fanfare. As a matter of fact, the business is up over 70% from this time last year which demonstrates the love for this delicious, and now mainstream, cuisine. TAVOLA is inspired by the food of sunny Italy, Greece and the Middle East. Think fruity olive oil, briny olives, aromatic herbs, sweet tomatoes, citrus and savory pasta. We’re making our own hot-out-of-the-pizza-oven pita bread used for our hummus bowls, chicken and spiced beef kefta skewers, out-of-this-world falafel, and warm pita wraps, garnished, stuffed and topped with Israeli salad, tzatziki, tahini and romesco. The recipes are uncomplicated, healthy and ingredient driven. Their evocative flavors will have you dreaming of the warm, sunny lands along the beautiful blue Mediterranean Sea. Join me as we travel and cook together.

Chef: Joanne Weir (Chef, Television Personality, Cookbook Author, San Francisco, CA)

Modern South
From the rolling hills and hollows in Appalachia to the flat salt marshes of South Carolina, the South has a strong tradition of good food and generous hospitality. The region is well known for fried chicken, grits, and biscuits, but there are some Southern foodways that many may find surprising: there have been Chinese living in the Mississippi Delta since the 1800s; at one time more Italians lived in New Orleans than New York City; an Atlanta suburb is known as the “Seoul of the South”; and the region has more Hispanics moving there than any other part of the US. The South is rich in cultural diversity and the food of the modern global South reflects this. In this workshop, Virginia will share recipes from her latest cookbook Secrets of the Southern Table: A Food Lover’s Tour of the Global South.

Chef: Virginia Willis (Chef and Cookbook Author, Atlanta, GA)

Cooking with Pulses for a sustainable future
As the world’s population grows and natural resources dwindle, the sustainability of our food systems is in our hands. We as chefs are the leaders in the food industry and we are able to use our platform to influence and change the mindset of our society in the way that food is viewed. This hands-on workshop will cover how to incorporate pulses into a daily diet so that not only is it nutritious and delicious but it also supports a sustainable future. We will utilize pulse centered recipes in addition to plant based foods to develop a menu that can cross through all meal periods.
Chef Jon Poyourow MA, RD, LD and Chef Stacy Mirabello CEPC (Chef Instructor, Johnson and Wales University, Providence, RI)

Off The Wheaten Path
Welcome to a fun hands-on flatbreads and more class! For me, baking reflects the care and thoughtfulness we put in to the process and our choice of the ingredients. Baking and working with seasonal and fresh local ingredients became a way of focusing my inner forces. It’s something I could share with others, touch, taste, smell and feel. The creation, refinement, and constant improvement is so rewarding for me. In this class, I’ll share some approachable recipes that are focusing mostly on ideas that inspire a healthy lifestyle: seasonal, local, fresh, nutritious and gluten free. From breakfast to dinner and snacking between, consumers demand, more than ever: flavor, nutrition, and wellness in every product. Let’s come together and create something unique, yet humbled.
Chef Luminita Cirstea CMB, CBB, CWPC (Chef Instructor, Johnson and Wales University, Providence, RI)

6:30 PM Iron Chef Competition Finale (with Chef Jet Tila and 8 contestants)

Campus Center Blue Wall

The Iron Chef America format is back at this year’s Chef Culinary Competition. Four teams of 2 chefs will compete for the honor of being the Chef Conference Iron Chef Champion. There will be a 10-minute skills competition to begin where the secret ingredient will be revealed. Each team must break down the secret ingredient in the 10 minutes provided. Each team will be judged on how well they prepare the item and assessed points. In the second part of the round (30 minutes), each team will use what they break down to complete their dishes. Four plates will be prepared- 3 for the judges and 1 for display. The judges will critique the dishes based on presentation, taste and originality. Points from the skills and cooking portion will be combined for the total round score. While watching the competition, you can taste the dishes that guest chefs demonstrated and prepared earlier in the afternoon.

7:00 PM New England Clambake

Campus Center Blue Wall

A conference favorite you won’t want to miss! Enjoy a New England summer tradition featuring fresh lobsters, chowder, steak, local strawberry shortcake and live music.

Presentation by Kittredge Equipment Company and Blount Fine Foods

9:00 PM UMass Pub

Campus Center 2nd Floor
Enjoy, relax, and network. A light reception with beverages will be provided.