Apples were in abundance at this week’s Valley Café inspired by the Victorian household knowledge of Mrs. Isabella Mary Beaton. The apple soup, apples and rice, and butter apples were not only delicious, but also fresh from the local area.
Hudson River Fruit Distributors grows its apples less than 10 miles from campus across the Hudson River in Milton, New York and also just east of Poughkeepsie in Pleasant Valley. They are a vertically integrated company, meaning they do everything–grow, package, sell, ship and store the apples in order to ensure their produce is the highest quality possible. The Valley Café only sources from the best.
The business was started in July of 1963 by Isadore “Izzy” Albinder who immigrated from Russia in the 1930s. When he arrived in New York City he bought a pushcart to sell apples in the neighborhoods around Brooklyn. After some time Izzy became frustrated by the low quality of apples, so he traveled north to the Hudson Valley and formed relations with the apple growers. Eventually, Izzy and his son Harold purchased land and a packing house that has since developed into Hudson River Fruit Distributors. Izzy’s grandson, Dan, and Dan’s daughter, Alisha, have since helped run the business which has expanded to over 400 acres of apple farms in New York and southern Vermont.
The hard work and crisp local taste of Hudson River Fruit Distributors were apparent in Tuesday’s Valley Café meal. My friend and I were chatting with one of the workers at the event on Tuesday about how delicious the dessert was and she was very proud about how fresh the apples were, having been peeled and chopped and baked in the kitchen rather than defrosted. It is farmers like Hudson River Fruit Distributors that allow The Valley Café to keep the passion for fresh, healthy ingredients alive. And we are proud to support the local community in return.
See everyone after spring break for more locally sourced lunches at The Valley Café!
(Photos courtesy of Hudson River Fruit Distributors and from the Valley Cafe Luncheon)
This week’s menu was packed with healthy dishes by Marist’s own Chef Anthony. Chef’s idea for the menu was to focus it around identifiable, local and relatively easy to prepare dishes. He was also focused on not making the meal itself scream HEALTHY, joking that then no one would want to eat it!
But spring break is approaching and for many people that means bathing suit season after a long winter, so fitness seems to be on everyone’s mind…
When designing a well-balanced and nutritious meal, Chef Anthony adheres to general guidelines that can be applied to daily eating:
Eat a variety of nutrient-rich foods—No single food supplies all the nutrients you need, so mix and match.
Enjoy plenty of whole grains, fruits and vegetables—And don’t be afraid to get creative in how you incorporate them into your diet!
Control your portions— Did you know the recommended serving of cooked meat is 3 ounces, similar in size to a deck of playing cards?
Eat regular meals—Skipping meals can lead to out-of-control hunger, which can result in overeating. So don’t be afraid to snack, just keep portions reasonable.
Reduce, don’t eliminate certain foods—You don’t have to give up your favorite food if it’s high in fat, salt or sugar. Just moderate portions and how often you eat it.
Foods are not good or bad—So don’t feel guilty for liking potato chips, apple pie or milkshakes.
Balance your food choices over time—Make sure you get all the foods you need in a reasonable a period of time.
The Valley Café always works to maintain its customer’s health, but enjoying healthy meals every day best starts with your habits!
What other successful healthy eating tips do you have??
The past couple of meals at The Valley Café have returned back to crowd favorites from last semester, back by popular demand.
Indian cuisine on February 11th featured lots of spices–chili powder, cumin, cinnamon and plenty of curry. The tastes of Asia continued the following week with the eclectic Burmese menu from the country of Myanmar, featuring briyani, cabbage and noodles.
Asia offers ingredients and tastes that are very unique to our American culture. Giving them a try at The Valley Café is a great way to learn to love them!
More meals to come!