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Did you hear the News? Check Out Chef Nina on My58

Original article written by: Hallie Anderson


Our very own Nina Curtis, director and executive chef of Vitaliz Café, joined the crew of KTXL-TV (FOX 40) live in Sacramento last week. She showcased her take on the Adventist Haystack, explaining the original recipe and its longtime legacy in a highly populated Blue Zone, Loma Linda, California.

Chef Nina’s recipe for the Vitaliz Haystack is inspired by the Adventist Haystack recipe in the Blue Zones Kitchen cookbook. In two live segments for the show, she prepared several plates of the dish for the news anchors, demonstrating how all the ingredients of the dish are built up in layers, forming a stack. It begins with a base of chips, but Chef Nina likes to “health it up” with a base of black rice, serving the chips on the side for an added crunch. After that comes her other wholesome ingredients like beans, lettuce, Pico de Gallo, chipotle aioli and more.

Her special addition to the haystack is a homemade, plant-based substitute for ground beef: a well-seasoned blend of lentils and walnuts. The news show hosts were impressed with how much it looked and tasted like the traditional ground beef you might find in a taco salad.

Chef Nina explained the concept of “plant slant,” one of the Blues Zones Power 9. The Power 9 are nine commonalities residents of the original Blue Zones share with one another, even though they live in very different parts of the world. A largely plant-based diet is one of the commonalities found to contribute to their longevity.

Watch Chef Nina in action as she wowed the KTXL-TV (FOX 40) crew with her Vitaliz Haystack in both segments.

Segment 1, Chef Nina talks haystacks and the focus on health, wholeness and hope at Adventist Health

Segment 2, Chef Nina shares more about Blue Zones at Adventist Health

This isn’t the first time Chef Nina’s Vitaliz Haystack has been in the spotlight! She won the Grand Prize with this recipe for the Health Care Without Harm chef contest in 2019. Twenty-five healthcare foodservice chefs from around the country entered. As we continue to push forward at AH Headquarters, get ready and stay tuned for even more tasty recipes being demo'd at the Vitaliz Cafe.


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