Take Two Chefs


I know, not a very original title…

Wanted to get this out before last week but time got away from me, so here now is a feature on two American chefs who specialize in vegetarian and vegan recipes. No meat, just veg.

They have both managed to become famous via a couple of celebrity daytime chat shows and on these programmes they promote and cook healthy – but especially vegan & vegetarian recipes.

Roberto Martin

Roberto MartinOriginally he never expected to be a chef, when he was growing up he was always around food. Roberto comes from a huge Mexican family and was the youngest of 15 kids. He would watch his mother cook for all his brothers, sisters, friends and family.

Roberto went to school at Cal State Fullerton as a Political Science major, and to pay for school went to work as a waiter. Eventually he got a job at a higher quality restaurant and soon convinced them to let him work in the kitchen.

After studying at the Culinary Institute of America, someone suggested that Roberto should become a personal chef and eventually found himself cooking for celebrities.

One of the families he worked for had a child with juvenile diabetes, and that is when he started focusing more on nutrition and health. Roberto revamped most of what he had learned in school and this acted as a platform for his vegan cooking.

He is now a personal chef for Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi.

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– Here is a clip of him on the EllenDeGeneres Show making a vegan pot pie:

The next chef is a favourite of the big Ope and has a cook book out.

Tal Ronnen

Tal RonnenTal Ronnen started the nonprofit education organization Veg Advantage in 2004 to help food-service operators integrate vegetarian options into their menus. Tal is a graduate of New York City’s Natural Gourmet Institute and has many years of experience working with food-service manufacturers, distributors and operators.

Tal has performed cooking demonstrations on numerous television shows including Oprah Winfrey, and often works with hotels, including Hyatt and Hilton; schools, including New York University; and corporate dining halls, including America Online’s headquarters and Yahoo!, to assist with vegetarian menu options.

In 2007, Tal assisted Chrissie Hynde of The Pretenders in opening her restaurant, VegiTerranean in Akron, Ohio

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In this clip below Tal is seen on an entertainment show talking about vegan food.

As mentioned Tal has a recipe book out: The Conscious Cook – Which you can buy via Amazon

Additional Notes:

Both chefs above use a product called Gardein in their recipes.
(Gardein is a line of plant-based foods with a meaty texture. It is made from a blend of soy, wheat and pea proteins, vegetables and ancient grains (quinoa, amaranth, millet, and kamut). Gardein is free of cholesterol, trans fats and saturated fat; the majority of gardein foods are low fat, too. gardein products are vegan-friendly.) Wiki.

Sadly this product is only on sale in the USA and Canada, but there is
Grassingtons who produce a range of vegan foods with gardein ingredients.

Another Note:
I found the info about these two chefs via Vegetarian Star, a great website for all your vegetarian celebrity news. I embedded alternative video clips on here because the clips mentioned in the following stories might be blocked in the UK:

Roberto Martin
Tal Ronnen

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