By Dilip Barman
What happens when you put a group of people passionate about healthy, whole food, plant-based eating together? What if they are competitively selected because they know how to effectively teach and know and keep learning more about nutrition?
And what if a pandemic is raging where the need to get good food and nutrition information is more important than ever, but having a gathering around food may not be a good idea?
So was born So Many Cooks in the Kitchen. There are around 300 Food for Life instructors around the world, including several in our area such as Chapel Hill-based Karen Pullen; I teach from Durham, as does Denise Dysard. We’re selectively chosen by the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine and teach classes to help keep folks in good health and to help prevent, manage or possibly reverse conditions like cancer, heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes and more.
Some of us got the idea in May of doing a quick-paced cooking and nutrition show, and we’ve done four monthly shows so far based on our Power Plate. The first was about beans and legumes; the second about vegetables; the third about fruits; and on Aug. 22 we explored whole grains. The fifth show will be about tofu, streaming live on Facebook on Sept. 26 at 2 pm.
The shows are broadcast live on Facebook. The Plant-Based Network (plantbasednetwork.com) has picked up the shows and will soon be editing and releasing shows that can be viewed on the web, through a phone app or through streaming services like Amazon Fire, Roku or Apple TV.
Join us! The shows are fun and include around a dozen or more Food for Life instructors spending around 6-8 minutes each in our kitchens before passing the baton to another cook’s kitchen. You can see our past recipes (bit.ly/soManyBeansRefs, bit.ly/soManyVegetablesRefs, bit.ly/soManyFruitsRefs and bit.ly/soManyGrainsRecipesPDF), watch past shows (find them on our Facebook page, @somanycooks) or learn more about us (somanycooks.com) — all for free.
Several of us have children, so in early August we tried out a So Many Kids in the Kitchen show! We got a lot of interest and hope to do these shows with 8-11-year-old presenters (and a 4-year-old on occasion) perhaps every two to three months. Click here for recipes from the three “summer camp” shows that the Kids in the Kitchen made.
Though you can’t taste what the Cooks or Kids prepare, you can cook along with us or just watch. See you at @somanycooks.
Dilip Barman leads the Triangle Vegetarian Society, teaches food and nutrition classes, and recently made his first film, Code Blue, about the health benefits of moving toward a whole food plant-based diet and the importance of nutrition education in medical training.
His periodic column in The Local Reporter will cover various aspects of plant-based eating, including recipes and cooking techniques; health and environmental benefits of eating low on the food chain; and pointers to important relevant resources and news.