Chef Miguel Lorino, an instructor, shares his experience teaching at Guang Ming College.
“Let’s move on from the stereotype that plant-based food is just salad.” Chef Miguel Lorino
Plant-based food is a movement that’s not leaving anytime soon. Several studies show that the secret to living till you’re 100+ years old is to love your vegetables. Several athletes, like Formula 1 champion Lewis Hamilton, credit their consistent form to a plant-based diet.
Last February 21, 2022, CCA Manila partnered with Guang Ming College in delivering its culinary programs. And at the top of the list of collaborations was the Plant-based Foundations class at Guang Ming College Tagaytay.
On May 27, 2022, the participating class held their first degustation dinner featuring ingredients in the “Bahay Kubo” song. I spoke to Chef Miguel Lorino, the faculty in charge, on how the preparation went.
How was your experience teaching?
Teaching plant-based culinary was a different and challenging, yet fun experience. My students were a mix of Guang Ming College faculty and students. You can see their commitment to the tasks and drive to learn the basics.
What did you teach them?
We taught a Plant-based Foundations Course, from the CCA partnership with the Rouxbe Online Culinary School. It is an online, self-paced course with lectures, videos, activities, and quizzes. I mentored them on the course completion and evaluated them in their laboratory work and the dinner event.
What did you learn from school?
As cliché as it can be, I learned a deeper understanding of life—the value and respect they give to the living, plants, animals, and humans. Also, I had a better appreciation of the arts since most students were enrolled in the performing arts. This activity was also my first dinner event since the pandemic. I remembered the excitement of organizing and executing live dinner events.
What’s your advice to people wanting to learn more about plant-based food?
Let’s move on from the stereotype that plant-based food is just salad. Enjoying plant-based food in different cooking methods and flavors is possible. We now have the advancement of technology that can give further information and research. Also, there are career courses on plant-based food.
What is the future of plant-based food?
Back in the early 2000s, there were limited sources of plant-based food. Nowadays, it is well appreciated and considered a cuisine. When you go to any grocery, you can now see plant-based processed food for sale.
There are also restaurants with Michelin stars that are gearing toward plant-based menus. In addition, there are professional courses focused on plant-based subjects. Plant-based food will become a staple and more common in the future. It will not be just a trend, but a permanent choice of eating.
What’s your advice to culinary students or aspiring chefs?
The culinary world is not an easy road to take. Students have to be passionate, disciplined and committed to being successful one day. I always tell my mentees and students that have achieved some success, whether organizing a culinary event or winning a competition: An achievement doesn’t define their totality.
They have to focus more on their output and what they do and not bathe in the spotlight. They need to keep pushing, learning, and improving while keeping their feet on the ground.
Share this story with someone interested in plant-based cuisine. And if you’re interested in our plant-based program, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Bahay Kubo Menu
Coconut Pandesal, Wintermelon and Pineapple Jam
Squash Cream Soup, Charcoal Cracker, Ginger Foam, Green Pea Puree, Carrot Bacon
Plant Based Soy Longganisa, Salad Greens, Jicama, Sauteed White Beans, Japanese Radish, Mandarin Orange, Braised Chickpeas, Tofu Crisps, Kaong, and Sesame Vinaigrette
Roasted Tomato Mousse, Adlai Lemon Crackers, Sampaloc Leaves Caviar, Pickled Cucumber and Avocados, Braised Mung Beans, Roasted Peanuts
Smoked Cabbage Wrapped Seitan, Pipian Sauce, Red Rice Pilaf, Sauteed Yardlong Beans and Banana Heart, Grilled Eggplant Puree, Pickled Palm Hart, Oyster Mushroom Crisps
Calamansi Tofu Cheesecake, Tablea and Ginger Whipped Cream, Sampaloc Sponge, Almond Crumble, Dehydrated Fruits, Lemongrass Salted Coconut Caramel, Strawberry Coulis, Pandan Coral Toile
Ube Sesame Espasol