5 Ways to Cut Cooking Time in Half

5 Ways to Cut Cooking Time in Half

If you are a working mum and your other half doesn’t do any cooking, you might find yourself getting into the habit of buying convenience foods to cut down on your workload, especially in the hot weather when no one wants to be slaving over a hot stove. However, even though kids love junk food, it is really bad for their health and yours too, so how can you get healthy meals without spending every night cooking? It is easy to cut your cooking time in half with a little organisation.

  • For a start, having salads means you don’t have to cook at all, unless you love to make your own potato salad from scratch. That’s okay; it’s easy to cube the potatoes and shove them in the microwave, then throw some mayonnaise over them. It hardly counts as cooking. Besides, you don’t actually have to have potato salad.
  • You can alternate a cooked meal with a salad; that’s one option. There is another one though. Cook twice as much and have the leftovers the next night. These can be either the same meal or made up into another kind of meal. For instance, if you have three cupfuls of cooked, diced vegetables left over, you can beat some eggs, add the veggies and make vegetable fritters to go with some salad. Even though you still have to cook the fritters, it is not as much effort as cooking meat and vegetables for a full meal.
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Local School Wellness Policies and Related News

Local School Wellness Policies and Related News

One section of the Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act of 2004 requires that all school districts that participate in the National School Lunch Program have local wellness policies by July 1, 2006. The School Nutrition Association (formerly ASFSA) has put together tools to help assist the school community in dealing with this new requirement. Well Done! School Nutrition Professionals Put Wellness Policies to Work This spring 2008 publication from the School Nutrition Association provides inspiration and practical ideas for all in the school community who are committed to fostering healthy eating habits in children. School nutrition professionals from districts of all sizes and all across the country share experiences relating to gaining support from principals, teachers, parents and students; establishing cafeteria-based nutrition education programs; finding products to meet new nutrition standards; developing staff wellness programs and making operational changes. (more…)

How to Get the Best Cake

How to Get the Best Cake

Do you spend your days wondering what cake you’ll buy next, or dreaming of the delicious morsels of cake you had last time you were at Gran’s place? It is not easy to get good cake with just the right amount of moisture - and the flavour that you could die for. Making a cake is a skill that not many people have, but it’s not impossible, so don’t despair. It is all the fault of the education system that took basic cooking out of high schools and replaced it with the science of cooking, a much more complicated subject in which students rarely did any cooking. When they did it was some amazingly exotic food that looked wonderful and tasted disgusting. (more…)

Right-Sized School Meals are the Nutritious Choice on Campus

Right-Sized: School Meals are the Nutritious Choice on Campus

What’s on the menu today? Caesar salad, chicken teriyaki on a bun or cheese lasagna with marinara sauce & breadstick. And sides include fresh apple slices, jicama and baby carrots with dip or apricot applesauce. These are just a few of the options customers can choose from at over 99,000 locations nationwide. Welcome to the school lunch of 2004.

Every day over 36 million school breakfasts and lunches are served to America’s school children. Provided through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program, these are nutritious, appealing, balanced meals, provided in age-appropriate serving sizes. A network of child nutrition professionals that oversee school nutrition programs on the local level – each of them members of the American School Food Service Association (ASFSA) – are available as expert sources to discuss the realities of school meals and the school nutrition business.

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President Releases FY 2004 Budget, Agriculture Appropriations

President Releases FY 2004 Budget, Agriculture Appropriations

President Bush sent his fiscal year 2004 budget to Congress this week, asking for $2.23 trillion dollars in all. Funds for the Department of Agriculture remained close to FY2002 levels, when adjusted for inflation. Half of the Department’s budget supports federal nutrition programs including food stamps and the National School Lunch Program.

The President’s budget narrative includes analysis of the National School Lunch Program, with specific attention to the alleged over-certification of children in the Program. The narrative states,

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Smith Becomes ASFSA President on Last Day of Conference

Are you looking for best practices to model your foodservice program after? Look to Polk County Schools and Marcia Smith for ideas. Do you need expert advice or comments on school foodservice and nutrition? Marcia Smith has plenty to say on the subject. Tell Marcia Smith you've popped a button and don't be surprised that she has a sewing kit in her purse. Is she Wonder Woman? Not as far as we know, but Marcia L. Smith, Ph.D., SFNS, isthe newly inaugurated President of the American School Food Service Association (ASFSA). On July 18, during the Closing General Session of ASFSA's 55th Annual National Conference, ASFSA Past President Marilyn Hurt, SFNS, handed over the Association's leadership to Marcia Smith, SFNS. Over the next year, Smith will lead the Association under the theme, "Caring for Communities We Serve." (more…)

Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo

Introduction to Cinco De Mayo Are you looking for creative ways to teach students about countries around the world? As teachers and school foodservice professionals, you can work together to make learning fun by combining food and history in the classroom. This is a sample lesson plan on how to bring Cinco De Mayo to life for your students. Lesson Overview: This lesson is designed to introduce students to the Mexican holiday, Cinco de Mayo. Students will have the opportunity to learn about typical foods of Mexico and explore the history and origins of some authentic Mexican foods.At the end of the lesson, students can make their own healthy tortilla wraps. (more…)

Children's Books about Nutrition

Children’s Books about Nutrition

Below are some recommended children's books on food and good nutrition. Check one out at your local library today! The Amazing Milk Book by Paulette Bourgeois, Catherine Ross and Susan Wallace This book describe milk's chemistry, nutritional value, production and use as a component of cheese and other foods. It's enriched with anecdotes and humor. The Beastly Feast by Bruce Goldstone At the great animal feast, bears bring pears and mosquitoes bring burritos. (more…)

Musical Chairs

Musical Chairs

Once upon a time, a high school principal in the Glendale (Calif.) Unified School District approached Rick DeBurgh, director of school foodservice. He said, "I want you to buy more study hall tables." DeBurgh explained, "I don't buy study hall tables." "Well, we need more places for students to eat," argued the principal. Then, let the students eat on fastfood-type tables that feature school colors, countered DeBurgh. "But they also have to study there," said the principal. And in a tale that ends happily ever after, DeBurgh showed the principal how students can study happily and productively on festive fastfood tables. "There was some initial concern, but after I met with the student group, the principal said, 'OK, go for it,' and the results have been wildly successful," he says. Not every school across the country boasts a separate space for its cafeteria, study hall, auditorium, gymnasium, school dance and meeting place. In fact, in many schools, one room must serve many functions. The result is the ubiquitous multi-purpose cafeteria, and its logistics can challenge even the most creative foodservice director. But with some innovative design or redesign, school foodservice professionals can find a wealth of solutions to maintain the cafeteria's identity. The key is to get involved in the process early-before it's too late and the music has stopped playing. (more…)