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article imageAmerica Cooks with Chefs reveals its new contestants

By Tim Sandle     Nov 1, 2014 in Food
Health and wellness body “America Cooks with Chefs” has announced the six contestants who will be paired with professional chefs to participate in a challenge to create the best delicious and healthy dish - the 800 calorie challenge.
The new television competition pairs six contestants drawn from across the U.S. Each contest will be paired with a professional chef. Each pair will be given the task of picking their favorite high-calorie dishes and turning them into nutritious, easy-to-prepare meals. This forms the "800 calorie challenge."
The concept is that television viewers (in the U.S. and worldwide) can watch each week and see the participants’ progress across the seven-episode series. The contestants will produce the meals whilst attending special "Kitchen Camps."
The brief for the new show is “an educational and entertaining next-generation cooking competition, the initiative provides content and resources to inspire people to make healthier choices in their daily lives.” The idea is that viewers can copy those recipes and dishes that appeal to them; this will hopefully lead to a rise in healthy eating in many homes.
The contestants and the James Beard Award–Winning Chef Mentors are, according to the production team:
Jonathan Saturay (New York, NY) works for the Pure Food Kids Foundation and teaches children about the importance of making healthy food choices. He will be paired with chef Maria Hines (Seattle, WA).
Vanita Lark Williams (Los Angeles, CA) want to know how to make her popular Caribbean and Southern dishes more nutritious. She will be paired with chef Mary Sue Milliken (Los Angeles, CA).
Kathy Partak (Auburn, California) has had six knee surgeries, making exercise difficult. Healthy eating is a top priority for her and her active-duty military husband and son, who is a budding chef himself. She will be paired with chef Naomi Pomeroy (Portland, Oregon).
Jordan Kennedy (Alexandria, VA) is getting married soon and wants to set up a family based on sustainable healthy cooking and eating practices. She will be paired with chef Jimmy Schmidt (La Quinta, CA).
Victoria Phillips (Lake Forest, IL) likes trying out new foods. She would like to learn healthy recipes that appeal to the whole family. She will be paired with chef Tony Mantuano (Chicago, IL).
Michel Angelo Gonzales (Miami, FL) is big lover of Latin cuisine. Suffering with heart disease and high blood pressure, keeping nutrition high on the agenda is important to him. He will be paired with chef Michelle Bernstein (Miami, FL).
The amateur and pro chef couplings will, at the end of the training, put their developed culinary skills to the test in a Live Cooking Challenge, which will take place at Clinton Health Matters Initiative Conference. This will be televised in January 2015.
The new series is produced by on-demand digital network Ora.TV. America Cooks with Chefs is a nationwide health and wellness movement that connects Americans with celebrity chefs to translate food into healthy, tasty and practical dishes.
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