Yale University: Yale Hospitality hosts culinary series celebrating perspectives on Mediterranean cuisine

Yale Hospitality will host a culinary series to educate the Yale community on the health benefits of the Mediterranean diet on Tuesday, Aug. 9. The series is a collaboration with La Molisana, an award-winning pasta factory and the university’s current supplier of pasta, and the Mediterranean Diet Roundtable.

Through this collaboration, La Molisana will contribute authentic recipes for campus menus, in addition to providing training and development opportunities for Yale Hospitality staff.

The university will provide the Yale Hospitality team, campus community, and guests with an opportunity to learn more about the nutritional aspects and production strategy of La Molisana’s artisanal, high-quality pasta. Attendees will also strengthen their skills in a pasta making and cooking class.

“Purchasing top-of-the-line pasta from La Molisana not only allows us to create comforting, delicious, and memorable meals — but provide a quality product with no additives whatsoever for our students to enjoy,” says James Benson, director of culinary excellence for Yale Hospitality.

Yale Hospitality’s partnership with La Molisana furthers its goal to integrate Mediterranean food culture as part of its focus on offering plant-forward and plant-centric menu options. It also allows for a more cohesive approach to understanding and appreciating the Mediterranean diet for its positive health and environmental impact, as found by recent studies.

“Having the opportunity to deepen our relationship with La Molisana will allow us to bring the best ingredients to our students, fueling their minds and bodies in the best way possible and educating them to make the best choices when it comes to what they eat,” says Benson.

Made in Molise, Italy and boasting over 7% of protein and a high cooking resistance, La Molisana’s classic pasta is naturally vegan and uses the finest durum semolina wheat, from grain to table.

“It is essential that the suppliers we partner with align with our values to support health, wellness, and create positive environmental impact,” says Rafi Taherian, associate vice president of Yale Hospitality. “In past years — and years to come — our menu will continue to maximize Mediterranean-inspired meals supporting health and wellness for people and the planet.”

Students can enjoy fresh pasta, made using La Molisana semolina flour, daily at Pasta e Basta, one of four distinct dining concepts located in the heart of Commons’ dining hall in Yale’s Schwarzman Center. During the academic year, seasonal menu options include orecchiette pasta with roasted blue Hubbard squash in the fall, casarecce with mushrooms and caramelized red pears in a vegan porcini ‘cream’ sauce in the spring, and a classic Bolognese year-round.

Yale Hospitality is the first-ever university dining program to serve La Molisana pasta on campus menus.

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