Diners at Michigan State University (MSU) will experience the finest ingredients grown and produced on campus at an upcoming Culinary Services event. South Pointe at Case Hall, one of nine residential dining halls on campus, will host the Taste of MSU on Thursday, Oct. 13 from 5-9 p.m. The dinner focuses on partnerships across the university that help us achieve a sustainable food cycle.
Through the Grown at MSU program, greens and vegetables grown by students at the MSU Student Organic Farm (SOF) and Bailey GREENhouse & Urban Farm, beef raised by MSU’s Department of Animal Science as part of the MSU Beef Program, dairy products from the MSU Dairy Store and fresh-baked goods from the MSU Bakers are served in MSU’s residential dining halls and from the Eat at State ON-THE-GO Food Truck.
Additionally, the department recently strengthened its partnership with the Swine Teaching and Research Center as well as the MSU Meat Laboratory to serve MSU Pork more frequently at the Great Lakes Plate dining venue at South Pointe.
The event incorporates all these important groups to showcase the variety of menu items that can be developed largely from ingredients that are native to MSU.
“Through our many academic partnerships, we’re proud to bring students and guests products that are grown and raised on our campus,” said Guy Procopio, director of Culinary Services at MSU. “It’s opportunities like the Taste of MSU that allow us to educate diners on where their food comes from and the local ingredients that we weave into our daily menus. Some of our chefs are gardeners themselves, and they value serving newly-harvested produce.”
“Growing up in Michigan, I was raised to live off the land,” shared Bryan Latz, executive chef for MSU’s South Neighborhood. “Being sustainable was a way of life for my family and me long before it became customary like it is today.”
Throughout the menu development process, Latz focused on incorporating seasonal produce, unique recipes from the Food Truck, natural cheeses from the MSU Dairy Store and protein dishes that reinforce the MSU Beef and Pork academic partnerships.
The Great Lakes Plate venue, for example, will serve a rotisserie sirloin made from MSU Beef and hash using produce available from the SOF such as pumpkins and squash. In addition, Veg Out will offer options for those with special dietary needs, including vegetarian black bean burgers produced by the Eat at State ON-THE-GO Food Truck as well as a vegan BLT made from smoked beets, an MSU SOF spring mix, tomato and cheese-less pesto. MSU Pork will be served from Ciao as part of a sausage and roasted vegetable pizza dish and from Brimstone in house-made bratwursts produced on campus in the Corporate Kitchen. Bliss, a dessert venue, will incorporate MSU Dairy Store ice cream in various flavors to offer a sundae bar as well as MSU Bakers cookies, which are baked fresh daily on campus.
Linking the MSU community to local sourcing efforts is a priority for the university. To support this goal, the culinary team seeks out opportunities to collaborate with academics, student groups and departments to educate diners on the local food system and sustainable practices.