By Kelsey Givens
Five hundred thirty six.
That was the amount of calories contained in the three course meal served by local Executive Chef Kendrick Ganaway for the HealthCare Partners Healthy Cooking event Wednesday night.
Close to 100 people attended the event at the Pahrump Nugget to learn how to make homemade meals that are not only delicious, but good for them as well.
Beginning with an appetizer plate of cheesy zucchini bites and smoked salmon canapés, the crowd was told exactly how the items were made and their calorie counts, before a beautifully plated single serving of the dish was brought out to each person in the room.
Attendees could be heard complimenting the chef’s creations in between each bite of the food on their plates, and discussing their disbelief that something so healthy could also be so tasty.
“Our philosophy is that we’re partners with the community and the patients. So part of that partnership that we believe in, is giving them all the tools they need to be healthy and successful, one of which we believe is healthy cooking,” Jeremy Cox, Pahrump director of operations for HealthCare Partners, said.
“A lot of people talk about going on a diet, but they may not know how to execute it. The providers are there to help them. Every resource that we can come up with to help out the patients is what we’re looking to do. And having our local celebrity chef here to teach them healthy cooking is right on point with what we want to do. It’s another opportunity for us to give back to the community,” he said.
The menu for the evening’s event was the appetizer, followed by an entrée of herb-roasted chicken breast with a small fresh side salad and a desert entrée of strawberry angel food cake.
As with the appetizers, with each new course brought forth, Ganaway would stand at the front of the room and introduce the dish and explain how to make it before individual plates were brought out to each person in the room.
Ganaway, along with other HealthCare Partners associates, made sure to spend lots of time walking around the room as people were enjoying their dinners to answer any questions patrons might have on health or the food in front of them.
One of the biggest questions people seemed to have, was how can a delicious menu, like the one served that night contain only 536 calories?
It comes down to portion control, “indulging a little, but not going overboard,” Ganaway explained.
Both those from HealthCare Partners and the chef seemed very pleased that people were enjoying their dinners so much. But Ganaway added he was also happy to be able to give back to the community.
“This is why I’m a chef, just for events like this. It’s giving back to the community so it’s a good thing. Anything positive is always worth it,” he said.
Another way in which HealthCare Partners is focusing on giving back to the community is the food drive they’ve started, which runs from now until Oct. 25.
The food donated to the drive will go to homebound seniors who need a little extra help from their community.
Those who wish to donate to the drive can drop off canned and dry goods to any HealthCare Partners clinic as well as the Pahrump Senior Center, Pahrump Health and Rehabilitation Center, Desert View Hospital, I Love Yogurt and the Pahrump Party Supply Store.
Recipes from Wednesday’s night event will also be available at the clinics for anyone who wants them.