Calling All Foodies
Chef Joseph Bastianich
Something delicious is cooking at the Stamford YMCA as its multipurpose teaching kitchen begins to simmer with Fine Food for a Cause, a culinary fundraiser at 203 Studios, where acclaimed Greenwich-based chef Joseph Bastianich and Miss America 2011 Teresa Scanlan will be honored.
Because Bastianich, winner of the 2008 James Beard Award, is a marathon-running fitness devotee and Scanlan won her crown with a platform of “Eating Disorders: A Generation at Risk,” the honorees are an ideal duo to highlight the Y’s goal to expand its mY Healthy Life project, says Ernest Lamour, the Y’s executive director. “The idea is to build on our education programs for families and address childhood obesity and healthy eating.”
The concept for the kitchen—designed to include multiple stovetops and work stations—is for the space to become an incubator for family-focused healthy-living classes. The kitchen will also enhance the YMCA’s ongoing collaboration with Stamford Hospital’s Kids’ Fans childhood obesity prevention program.
Since Kids’ Fans estimates that as many as 40 percent of the city’s children age five and under are overweight or obese, it is imperative to empower families to champion good eating habits, says Lamour. “The kitchen reflects our belief that we have to give families the tools they need to cook delicious, healthy meals.”
To celebrate its 2010 reopening, the Y planted its first organic garden on its roof. So an all-natural goal for the test kitchen will be for produce plucked from its rooftop to become the basis for the cooking lessons. And children enrolled in the Y’s after-school LEAD Academy have already worked with nutritionists from local ShopRites on healthy strategies such as label reading, budgeting and food pyramid–based meal planning.
Of course, even a health-conscious chef would agree every now and then you’ve got to splurge—just a little. So circle January 30 on your calendar as one night to indulge. Guests will be treated to cocktails and small plates produced by top culinary talent, including the event’s coordinating chefs—Soundview Catering’s David Cingari and caterer Karla Sorrentino—as well as teams from Match, Tappo, Morton’s, Columbus Park, DaPietro’s, Sweet Lisa’s and more.
Fine Food for a Cause tickets are $150. Call 203-357-7000; stamfordymca.org.