Foodservice > Chef's Table
Almost 40% of Chef Phelps’ student patrons are vegetarian. "We get a lot of student input," he notes. "The vegetarians have a big voice." Luckily for them, Chef Phelps formerly ran a vegan dorm at Mount Holyoke College, making him well-versed in cooking with grains, beans and flavorful sauces. He adds, "Students eat with their eyes. If it’s a colorful, fresh-looking dish, they’re apt to try it." And that means using quality ingredients.
"We always use brand names," Chef Phelps says. "Sometimes the student perception is ‘mystery meat,’ so we’re trying to combat that idea."
Kikkoman products are a favorite of the chef and his crew. Requests for nutrition information led the chef to post profiles of each of the dishes he serves. "We use a lot of the Kikkoman lite line," he points out. "It fits into our planning philosophy of more soy flavor and less sodium."
Even when he isn’t throwing special events like the Elvis Dinner in January, Chef Phelps offers a diverse menu. He is developing more Asian recipes, such as Tempeh Stir-Fry with Broccoli, sautéed with Kikkoman Soy Sauce and rice wine vinegar. Panko Japanese Style bread crumbs are used to bread haddock before frying it quickly in canola oil for a New England fish and chips dish. Other Middlebury College favorites are Spicy Chicken & Plantains, marinated in soy peanut sauce, and anything marinated in Chef Phelps’ Garlic Rosemary Marinade.