Feels like everywhere you turn these days celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson is flexing his culinary muscle. From the front rows of fashion week, where he teamed up with Restaurant Associates to put global food on display, to his restaurant, Red Rooster, in Harlem, where he recently hosted a brunch to raise money for famine victims in the Horn of Africa, he certainly isn't using his prominence for naught.
Samuelsson's other platform, healthy living, brought him to New York's Dream Hotel Downtown last week as part of the Food Network New York City Wine and Food Festival. There he conducted cooking demonstrations for kids (and adults alike), including recipes for his Avocado and Banana Smoothie and a Peanut Hummus with Pita Chips. "Both were easy recipes that parents can make with their children, as well as recipes that included new and interesting flavors that can help expose kids to healthier and wider varieties of food," Samuelsson wrote in a blog about the event.
"Cooking with your kids and engaging them in hands-on activities are two ways to begin to educate children about the healthy eating, and kickstart the important task to help change how the younger generation looks at food and nutrition," he wrote.
The week's festivities included more cooking demonstrations in Samuelsson's neighborhood of Harlem called "Fun and Fit in the City." In addition to healthy eating, he encouraged the audience to shop the local Harlem Farmers Market, not only for fresh produce, but to also help food vendors from the community.
Earlier this year, Samuelsson hosted a group of 15 middle school students from Harlem's Global Tech Prep for a special class on maintaining a balanced diet.