Several local chefs and natural products industry leaders are taking on the $1.25 challenge Thursday.
They're going to make a school lunch that meets USDA guidelines and costs less than $1.25 per serving, which is the average budget for a school lunch in the United States.
The competitors are:
- Justin Gold, founder of Justin’s, with Chef Hosea Rosenberg, chef and owner of Blackbelly and Santo
- Robbie Vitrano, CEO of Good Spread, with Chef Kelly Whitaker, CEO of ID Est Hospitality (Basta, Wolf’s Tailor, Dry Storage, and Noble Grain Alliance)
- Miche Bacher, founder and chief evangelist at Miche’s Kitchen and Zhuzh!, with Chef Daniel Asher, chef of River & Woods and soon-to-open Ash’Kara
- Ben Fenton, vice president of Boulder Food Group, with Catherine Compitello, consultant at the Beacon Fund
- Matt LaCasse, co-founder of Birch Benders, with Lizzi Ackerman, wife and co-founder of Birch Benders
- Beata Pabian, vice president of sales at The Jackfruit Company, with Alan Murray, CEO of GoodBelly by NextFoods
The Chef Ann Foundation shared two of the recipes with us:
Chinese Stir Fry Slider, by Miche Bacher, founder and chief evangelist at Miche’s Kitchen and Zhuzh!, with Chef Daniel Asher, chef of River & Woods and soon-to-open Ash’Kara
Ingredients: Ground chicken, ginger powder, garlic powder, red pepper, rice bran oil, celery, red onion
Instructions: Dice and sauté onions and celery in oil. Add veggie mix to the ground chicken, season with spices, and form into 2 ounce patties. Cook patties on griddle. Serve on whole grain slider bun.
Side dish: Pickled Vegetables
Ingredients: Carrots, cucumber, cabbage, rice wine vinegar, peppercorns, sugar, water
Instructions: Bring water to a boil. Shred carrots, cucumbers, cabbage, and celery root. Place vinegar, peppercorns, and sugar in a bowl. Add boiling water and stir until sugar and salt are dissolved. Add vegetables. Let sit for anywhere between 30 minutes and 2 weeks
Side dish: Steamed Bok Choy/Kale
Ingredients: Bok choy kale, water, sesame oil, pepper
Instructions: Heat the water, oil, and pepper in a frying pan. Add the bok choy and kale and cook covered until the water is gone and the greens are wilted.
Ingredients: Peanut butter without salt, ginger, sesame seeds, scallions, water, low sodium soy sauce, orange juice, red pepper flakes, rice wine vinegar
Instructions: Blend together peanut butter, soy sauce, orange juice, and rice wine vinegar. Add ginger, sesame seeds, scallions, and red pepper flakes. Stir to combine. Add water as needed to thin.
Serve with a whole orange
Butternut Squash Mac & Cheese, by Ben Fenton, vice president of Boulder Food Group, with Catherine Compitello, consultant at the Beacon Fund
Ingredients: Butternut squash, tofu, nutritional yeast, water, lemon, sea salt, pasta
Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Halve butternut squash and remove the seeds. Place squash skin side down on baking sheet and bake for 40 to 45 minutes, until soft and tender. While the squash bakes, add the pasta to the water and cook according to directions, approximately 10 -12 minutes. Once the squash has cooked, scoop out squash flesh and set aside. Blend tofu and nutritional yeast in a food processor. Add squash and water to tofu mixture and blend again. Add a squeeze of lemon juice and salt and blend once more. You have your cheese sauce! Stir in cooked pasta.
Served with an apple
The challenge is Thursday, October 25 at the Sterling Rice group Test Kitchen Event Space at 5:30 p.m.
Tickets are available online for a suggested donation of $100.