Cooking tip: "Whatever you have flying around the refrigerator, put it in..."
José Andrés is one of the most high profile chef advocates involved with First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move! campaign. An internationally famous restaurateur, cookbook author, TV personality and James Beard Award winner, Andrés has been a frequent guest chef at the White House, and he's the star chef for the second installment of the Let's Cook video series. The project debuted in July, and is designed to give families easy cooking lessons that enact the Let's Move! goals of making healthy food both affordable and accessible. (At top: Andrés, Kass and the girls in the White House kitchen; inset is Mrs. Obama and Andrés in the Kitchen Garden)
Hosted by assistant chef and Senior Policy Advisor for Healthy Food Initiatives Sam Kass, Andrés, joined by his daughters Carlota and Ines, presents six easy, affordable and healthy family dinners for four (average price: about $13), all built around chicken and roasted vegetables. One big boiled chicken, to be exact. And some canned tuna and eggs. Kass and Andrés give plenty of cooking tips, including the suggestion to roast whole vegetables in the oven, rubbed with olive oil.
"You can cook like a top chef in very quick time," Andrés says, emphasizing how fast and simple the recipes are.
In an effort to stretch the family food dollar, there's a focus on creativity, and on using every possible part of the vegetables and chicken--including making stock from the boiled bones.
"I clean the carcass of the chicken to make sure nothing goes to waste," Andrés says. "The soup we have at the end is the most delicious of everything. Whatever you have flying around the refrigerator, put it in the soup. I guarantee it will be the most favorite of the week."
The recipes that Kass, Andrés, and the girls present include the food costs and nutrition information on the website, and there's also a shopping list. The featured recipes: Chicken with Broccoli and Cauliflower ($13.25 for four servings); Tuna and Roasted Vegetable Salad with Toast and Allioli ($15.40); Roasted Chicken and Vegetables ($13.10); Gazpacho and Tuna Omelet with Toast ($13.00); Chicken Vegetable Soup and Quesadilla ($8.25); and Chicken Rice with Vegetables ($10.05). There's also an "optional" Chicken Croqueta Snack ($4.15).
Carlota has guest cheffed at the White House before; she joined her Papa in demonstrating family-friendly recipes in the Kids Kitchen at the 2009 White House Easter Egg Roll. Andrés is one of the group of chef advisers for Chefs Move To Schools, and he joined Mrs. Obama and Kass in the White House Kitchen garden for the special harvest and picnic on June 4, when the project launched at the White House. He's also visited DC-area schools with Kass, to teach nutrition (above, during a school visit).
The first Let's Cook video featured Kass cooking with Atlanta chef Marvin Woods.
Related: Andrés has also been appointed by Commerce Secretary Gary Locke as the only chef to serve on the US Travel and Tourism Advisory Board.