chef-bryan-students_web.jpgNORTH MIAMI – Young children got a chance to walk and pick ingredients for their pizza during Johnson & Wales University’s North Miami campus’ Big Chef, Little Chef event.

The university welcomed 40 fifth-graders from W.J Bryan Elementary School Oct. 11 for a program designed to teach children healthy eating habits in a farm-to-table environment.

Chef Wayne Bryan, culinary instructor at JWU’s North Miami campus, taught students the meaning of farm-to-table and the difference in taste farm fresh ingredients could make. Students picked herbs from JWU’s edible landscape — a garden with more than 100 species thriving throughout the campus — and then used these herbs to make whole wheat, veggie pizzas. Students spent the day cooking in JWU’s culinary labs and learned about farm fresh ingredients, nutrition and fitness.

Farm-to-table means that the food on the table came directly from a specific farm, according to the food movement. Sometimes this mean the table is at the farm and cooks or chefs prepare and serve the food at the farm. Other times the use of farm-to-table emphasizes a direct relationship between a farm and a restaurant or store. Sometimes it is used to refer, more loosely, to farmers markets and other venues where people can buy food directly from growers.

“It is so important to educate children and families in the black community about the benefits of developing healthy eating habits,” said Chef Bryan. “Oftentimes the types of produce available in local grocery stores may be limited, not fresh or highly processed and grown with pesticides and genetic modifications. Purchasing fruits and vegetables from a local farmers market is an easy and affordable way for families to access fresh and tasty produce that is good for them.”