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Society & Culture

Cooking for Your Life With the Drexel Food Lab

May 23, 2016

Spiced Quinoa Salad

The Drexel Food Lab has had long-standing partnership with cancer-fighting nonprofit Cook for Your Life, for which it develops recipes and offers monthly cooking classes. The students of the Food Lab celebrated that partnership May 12 at the Academic Bistro with a special dinner drawn from Cook for Your Life Founder Ann Ogden Gaffney’s new cookbook

Gaffney’s cookbook features 100 recipes specifically designed to nourish a cancer patient before, during and after treatment. The book was nominated for a 2016 James Beard award. 

“I’m a two-time cancer survivor, and when I was going through my treatment I realized that people needed help with eating,” said Gaffney. “Not just because they weren’t feeling well but also because they didn’t really cook very much. I started giving tips. Tips that turned in to classes. All for free because people have trouble with money who are in cancer treatment.”

Food Lab Manager and 2015 culinary arts alumna Ally Zeitz led a kitchen full of Drexel students to bring Gaffney’s recipes to life. Zeitz and her team proved that eating well and eating healthy weren’t mutually exclusive. 

“I tell my students, cooking is about feeding real people,” said Jonathan Deutsch, PhD, professor of culinary arts and food science and founder of the Food Lab. The dinner that night, made of delicious dishes that anyone, no matter what their health, could enjoy, lived up to that maxim.

Check out the slideshow below for some of the scrumptious culinary creations of the night: