Earlier this year as part of the First Lady’s Let’s Move initiative, which looks to tackle all aspects of the growing childhood obesity epidemic in the United States, “Top Chef” alumni Fabio Viviani, Richard Blais, Jennifer Carroll, Spike Mendelsohn, Grayson Schmitz and Paul Qui took on a challenge from the first lady of the United States. Their mission was to make a kid-friendly school lunch healthy and tasty. I decided to check back in with Fabio, who I met last year during the campaign, to get his views on healthy eating for children in America.
Q: Last year you were part of first lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move Campaign, do you really feel parents can make a difference in childhood obesity with proper nutrition?
A: Absolutely, we now see so many children who are developing diabetes, ADD and other conditions that are caused by poor diets. It is unfortunate that so many children fill up on so many bad foods and eat just what tastes good and looks good, but not what feels good and has high nutritional value.
Q: Does it start and end with nutrition for creating a healthier American children?
A: Nutrition in the basis for good habits and the less time we spend educating our children and taking the time to cook good meals for them, the more diseases they will have in the end. We must put the priority on educating our children about good eating habits and the consequences of eating too many processed foods.
Q: Do you support any particular organizations that fight childhood obesity?
A: I support any organization that embraces education about good nutrition and gives access to knowledge for both children and parents so they can make better choices about the food they make and eat.
Q: Last week I tried this Turkey Dumpling recipe, and it is pretty amazing.
A: These dumplings are a very fun, very easy recipe to make a delicious and satisfying dinner! The word dumpling itself is fun, you don’t even have to eat it, you just say “dumpling” and you cannot help but smile! But do not say dumpling while you are eating, that would be rude.
Q: Any tips on making healthy meals for kids?
A: I always suggest making the food in plenty of shapes and colors, don’t exaggerate on the portions and just have fun.
Turkey Dumpling Recipe
- 1 egg
- 2 tbsp butter
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Chicken broth
- Shredded turkey
Mix 1 beaten egg, 2 tablespoons butter, ½ cup Flour and ½ teaspoon salt. Add water until the dough starts to come together. Drop small spoonfuls into simmering chicken broth; cook for 3 minutes after the dumplings float. Serve with shredded Turkey and Broth.