Chef, dietitian serving nutrition tips at UMC

By Staff

The University Memorial Center Executive Chef Dean Couchey and the Clinical Translational Research Center's (CTRC) Dietitian Kathleen Farrell are presenting a series of free drop-in workshops on how our food choices affect health and fitness.

CU students, faculty and staff are invited to attend the workshops to learn easy tips about healthy eating and to taste a variety of samples from Couchey that demonstrate how to prepare healthy foods with great taste.

"Eating healthy is easier than ever now," Couchey said. "With so many healthy choices available in restaurants and grocery stores, there is no excuse not to eat healthier."

The workshops will be on the last Tuesday of the month through April, from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the Alferd Packer Restaurant and Grill, first floor UMC. Lunchtime customers and visitors are encouraged to stop by to learn healthy tips and try some samples.

At the series debut Jan. 26, Farrell discussed ways to include color-rich foods in everyday meals, while Couchey provided colorful samples to taste: brilliant Yellow Pepper Soup, whole wheat pasta with rich red UMC Spicy Marinara Sauce, steamed green beans that retained their fresh color, Blueberry Oatmeal Crisp and Quinoa Salad.

Workshops in February, March and April will include the topics "Are you in need of an oil change?" pointing out the difference between saturated, unsaturated, trans and omega 3 fats; tips for following a gluten-free diet; and a look at popular sports drinks.

Executive Chef Dean Couchey's recipe for colorful Yellow Pepper Soup:

4 Yellow Peppers, cored and seeds removed (can use any type of sweet bell pepper, e.g. red, yellow, orange, purple)
1 Idaho potato, diced (skin removed)
1 can vegetable or low-sodium chicken stock
1 clove garlic
White pepper (Black pepper works, too, just use less)
Salt (if needed)

Simmer peppers and garlic in stock until tender, about 30 minutes. Use blender to puree, return to pot, add in diced potatoes and simmer for another 20 to 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are fork tender. Puree the soup again in the blender until the soup is smooth. Add in white pepper and adjust with stock until you find the right consistency. After you get the soup to the correct consistency, taste and adjust flavors with salt and pepper. If you would like, add 1 tablespoon of cream to the soup.