We Scream for Ice Cream (Extravaganza)!

As the semester comes to a close, we want to invite you to the ultimate semester send-off; Ice Cream Extravaganza!

🍩 Ice Cream Extravaganza 🍩

Date Location Time
May 3, 2017 Garden Commons 5-8pm

Take a break from the academic grind and get something sweet on Wednesday, May 3 from 5-8pm as Garden Commons hosts ice cream and gelato experts from the Miami family.

Young’s Jersey Dairy will be in attendance, serving up their ice cream, which is well known around campus. Young’s Jersey, based out of Yellow Springs, provides the ice cream used in Encounter milkshakes and is the creator of Red Brick Bliss, Miami’s exclusive ice cream flavor served at Miami Ice.

Speaking of Miami Ice, Miami Ice gelato will be available as well. Look forward to their tasty gelato flavors that are all made fresh, in-house at Armstrong Student Center.

Additionally, prizes will be given away from ice cream favorites like Graeter’s, Spring Street Treats and Mitchell’s Ice Cream. Stop by and enter to win!

If you still aren’t convinced or don’t know what to expect, check out our recap from our fall event and see for yourself! Regardless, be sure to swing by Garden Commons on Wednesday, May 3 from 5-8pm for dinner and take advantage of the opportunity to get a sweet treat for dessert!

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Eat Healthier With Proper Preparation

It is inevitable that some day you will need to plan and prepare your meals. This important part of “adulting” isn’t so hard when you’re a college student on a meal plan, but it’s always good to make sure you know the basics.

We all know how hard it can be to throw together good, healthy meals if you have a busy schedule (which, who doesn’t?), so make sure you’re getting the proper nutrients by planning your meals ahead of time. One way to approach this is to pack your meals ahead of time. For example, you could try some of these recipes for lunches. Doing the work ahead of time makes these quick grab-and-go items in the morning. Just be sure to pack foods that will sustain you throughout the day, mixing both simple and complex carbs.

A lot of times, being in a hurry to get out the door in the morning leads to skipping breakfast and being hungry the rest of the day. This can lead to making poor decisions with regard to food.

“Who cares if this bag of chips is 200 calories? I’m hungry!”

If you make breakfast ahead of time, you can easily grab it to-go no matter how much you overslept. For example, if you enjoy a savory, egg-centric breakfast, try this recipe for baked egg muffins! If you’re looking for something sweet, you could make overnight oats with just a few ingredients or these baked oatmeal cups!

Breakfast, lunch and dinner aren’t the only way you can plan ahead. Realistically, you’re still going to want to snack during the day, so make sure those snacks are healthy and homemade when possible. You could pre-portion nuts or even make your own flavored ones like these. If you want a nut-free option that is still protein packed, try roasted chickpeas, which are super easy to make ahead!

The most important aspects of meal prepping are to utilize your freezer and make large batches of yummy, healthy food ahead of time. Don’t be afraid to pre-portion your servings to avoid overeating either. Dedicate one day a week to plan next week’s meals and you’re set!

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Ready for Picnic on the Patio?

Summer is just around the corner, so it’s only fitting that Bell Tower Place hosts a cookout to celebrate! Join us at Bell Tower Place on Friday, April 28 from 11am-2pm for our Picnic on the Patio special event!

Picnic on the Patio

Date Location Time
April 28, 2017 Bell Tower Place 11am-2pm

Fresh off special dining events like One Miami Special Dinner, Seventh Inning Stretch and last week’s Local Vendor Day, Picnic on the Patio is the latest of the spring dining festivities. Unlike the previous events, Picnic on the Patio is occurring this year during lunch from 11am-2pm, making it the perfect midday meal on April 28.

For those who enjoyed the ballpark food from Martin Dining Hall’s Seventh Inning Stretch, the Picnic on the Patio menu will look, and taste, familiar. The menu features summer favorites like hot dogs, Italian sausage, burgers, veggie burgers, smoked pork sandwiches, fries, corn on the cob, macaroni and cheese, baked potato salad, and much more. Check out the full menu below!

Swing by Bell Tower Place on Friday, April 28 from 11am-2pm and join us for a cookout just in time for summer!

Stay connected and follow @MiamiUDining on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram!






Local Vendor Day (Spring 2017) Recap

Hosted at Market Street at MacCracken once a semester, Local Vendor Day is a day where local vendors – whose products are sold out of Market Street – visit Miami University, giving students the opportunity to meet some of the wonderful people behind their favorite on-campus, local products. There are also plenty of free samples!

On April 20, Market Street hosted the spring rendition even as rain clouds loomed above. Students joined us outside Market Street, spoke with our vendors in attendance and enjoyed free samples including chips and salsa, fresh cilantro, gelato and sorbet, chocolates and other tasty sweets. We were also joined by the Pineridge Partners, a local band from Somerville, who provided a lovely soundtrack for the event.

Whether you missed out or want to know more about your favorite vendors, below are those who were able to attend the spring event. Read up on our Local Vendor Day from the fall, and be sure to stop by Market Street to purchase their incredible local products!

Check out our full photo album from Local Vendor Day on our Facebook page!

Madisono’s Gelato

Website: http://www.madisonogelato.com

Offering free samples of their Carmello & Sea Salt gelato and Strawberry Lemon Sorbetto, Madisono’s Gelato specializes in hand-crafted, unique artisanal flavors of gelato and sorbet. It’s sold on campus out of Market Street at MacCracken.

Check out our “Locally Grown” piece about Madisono’s Gelato and learn how a shiitake mushroom farmer learned how to make gelato.

The Organic Farm at Bear Creek

Website: http://www.organicfarmatbearcreek.com

The Organic Farm at Bear Creek provides a wide range of tasty products to Market Street, including salsa, pasta sauce, jams, soups and tea. At Local Vendor Day, co-owner Sandra Ashba handed out samples of the flavorful, fresh salsa and some delicious jam. 

Check out our “Locally Grown” piece on The Organic Farm and how they ensure consistency in their products by using family heirloom seeds.

Winans Chocolates + Coffees

Website: http://winanscandies.com

Winans Chocolates + Coffees is a fourth generation family owned chocolate and coffee company located in Piqua. They provided free samples of their delicious chocolate-covered pretzels and more. Winans sells chocolates at Market Street at MacCracken.

Windy Acres

Website: http://www.windyacresonline.com

Windy Acres was back at Local Vendor Day with a wide variety of sweet treats for samples. Windy Acres has been a fixture of the area for years and for many, their candy is nostalgic. Purchase your own sweet supply at Market Street and check out our “Locally Grown” piece on Windy Acres.

Miami University Institute for Food

Website: http://miamioh.edu/cas/academics/centers/iff/index.html

The Miami University Institute for Food and farm is an interdisciplinary experiential learning project dedicated to cultivating an awareness around issues of food, health, and sustainable agriculture. Purchase your own fresh produce from the Institute for Food at Market Street.

Check out our “Locally Grown” piece about the Miami University Institute for Food from this fall.

Heather’s Goodies

Website: https://www.facebook.com/Heathers-Goodies

Delicious baked bread from Heather’s Goodies was available to sample at Local Vendor Day. Heather’s Goodies is based out of Bellbrook and their products can be purchased at Market Street.

Stay connected and follow @MiamiUDining on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram!






Getting to Know Ashley Blust

Ashley Blust is not only a registered dietitian nutritionist and licensed dietitian (RDN, LD), but she is also one of the newest faces in Miami University’s dining services. Blust, an alumna of the University of Cincinnati, worked in food service throughout her undergraduate studies and comes from a background working at hospitals in the Cincinnati area.

Bringing a wide range of nutrition knowledge and food service experience, we thought we’d take a moment to sit down with Blust and find out more about our new general food service manager.

Q: What does it mean to be a registered dietitian?

A: Being a registered dietitian essentially means you went the extra mile. Anyone can call themselves nutritionists, but to be a registered dietitian, you are required to take classes, do an internship and then pass the exam. The exam was absolutely the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life.

To me, being a dietitian means you’re committed to the continuous learning about nutrition. Things are constantly changing and you have to keep up.

Q: Why is it important that Miami has a registered dietitian?

A: I think it’s important because when people think of college dining, they may think it’s a luxury of sorts, but really, dining is about nutrition. Nutrition is something we provide for our students, and we do everything we can in order for them to live a nutritious and well-balanced lifestyle. I think having a registered dietitian, who is an expert in everything they would need nutrition-wise, helps in that mission. 

Q: What is your favorite thing about Miami Dining so far?

A: I think my favorite thing so far is how above and beyond we go for special events and the variety at the various dining locations across campus. I mean, they’re so cool. From the concepts at Maplestreet with all those options, to the simplicity of Western, the Allergen Station and the wide range of options we have, I think it is the coolest thing in the world. I’m such a nutrition nerd, but I think it’s really incredible. If I were a freshman and I were looking at the school I wanted to spend four years at, and I saw this, especially being interested in nutrition and everything, hands down, I’d go here. I should have gone here, honestly.

Q: Could you briefly describe yourself personally?

A: I would describe myself as someone who is easy-going and easy to talk to. I understand that we may, as dietitians, promote A, B and C as the best way to do something, but there’s always a Z way to do something. Nutrition requires a personal approach and, in that sense, I like to think I’m easy to talk to and realistic.

Q: What is something people would be surprised to know about you?

A: I didn’t plan on being a dietitian. I wanted to be a physical therapist when I was a freshman and then a slew of other things. I decided I didn’t want to pursue a career in physical therapy, so I thought about an occupational therapist, which isn’t that different. I then switched to education, special education and then medical imaging before deciding I wanted to be a dietitian. I did not even think about being a dietitian until I was a junior, but I’m so glad I did. It’s a world of possibilities that I never imagined.

Q: Do you have any hobbies or interests outside of work?

A: Anything outside. I have two dogs. I have a Boston terrier named Thor, and then I have a German shepherd named Zeus. I take them for hikes and runs and things like that. I really like to kayak. I have my own kayak that I take on vacation to Florida and to different places around here. I like to fish out of the kayak as well. I’m not very good, but I enjoy it.

Q: Favorite dish to prepare?

A: I’ve been trying to venture out and try to make more ethnic foods. Recently, I made a really good butter masala. I’ve also been taking recipes back to the basics and trying to make them from scratch. I’m really good at making potato skins. It’s a pretty fool-proof one, but I’m really good at that.

Q: To eat?

A: My favorite dish would probably be this dish I created called body-builder casserole. It’s roasted sweet potatoes on the bottom and then you put kale, feta cheese and really lean ground beef. You top it with more feta cheese and bake it all into a casserole. It sounds super gross and it looks gross, but it’s really good.

Q: Least favorite food?

A: Olives. Nope, no olives.

Q: Favorite TV Show?

A: Right now my favorite tv show is probably Girls on HBO. I don’t watch a lot of TV or cable. I watch a lot of the streaming services like Netflix, HBO and Hulu.

Q: Cat or Dog?

A: Dogs. All day long.

Q: Cake or Pie?

A: Cake.

Stay connected and follow @MiamiUDining on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram!






Tyler Wills Named W. Lynn Darbyshire Award Recipient

Tyler Wills, a third-year student at the Middletown campus and member of our regional dining services, has been selected as the recipient for the W. Lynn Darbyshire Award.

The W. Lynn Darbyshire Award is a prestigious award, presented annually to a student of 3rd year status (Junior) who has demonstrated outstanding leadership in a student organization, student advisory council, student employment, community service, or campus committee assignment.

Wills is from Middletown, Ohio and currently serves as a student manager at the Middletown campus in dining services. As a student manager, Wills is responsible for opening and closing operation, counting down registers, keeping employee records, work scheduling, order entry, task assignment and general management. Being named the W. Lynn Darbyshire Award recipient was an unexpected honor for Wills.

“I am so incredibly grateful for receiving the award,” said Wills. “I was completely surprised when Dina [Hundley] called to tell me that I had won. It took a while to sink in, but I’m so proud of the accomplishment.”

Wills is majoring in integrative studies with concentrations in organizational leadership, social media marketing and computing communications. After college, Wills plans to move somewhere warm (likely southern Florida or southern California) to work in sales, marketing and/or public relations. He plans to get his real estate license and aspires to travel as much as he can.

The award was established in 1995 in honor of W. Lynn Darbyshire, Miami University’s first Director of Student Affairs & Athletics (1967-95) and first men’s basketball coach (1967-76), and in recognition of Darbyshire’s emphasis on character and leadership among Middletown Campus students.

The W. Lynn Darbyshire Award is one of various honors to be awarded at the Miami Regionals Award Ceremony on Friday, April 28 at 5:30pm. All faculty, staff and students are welcome to attend.

Stay connected and follow @MiamiUDining on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram!






How to Eat Like an Instagram Foodie

It’s easy to get sucked into a rabbit hole of aesthetically pleasing food pics on the Instagram explore tab, but have you ever wondered how to get those scrumptious looking eats? Well, wonder no more. We’ve scoured the internet researching current and upcoming trends in food blogging and we’re here to help you be the best Instagram foodie you can be. We found a couple trends that, if you haven’t heard of them already, you’re about to.

Buddha Bowls

Buddha bowls (also called power bowls, hippie bowls or macro bowls) are a convenient way to get all the macronutrients and filling protein your heart desires. When done properly, these meals are highly photogenic because of all the vibrant colors from the different, nutrient-rich ingredients you will use.

According to a blog post by the author of Valises & Gourmandises, Aryane, titled “Anatomy of a Buddha Bowl + 3 Delicious Recipes”, a buddha bowl will typically contain veggies, greens, a grain, a protein, a healthy sauce and some extras like dried fruits, nuts, seeds, etc. In general, Buddha bowls are chock full of protein and will keep you full for hours while you’re watching the “likes” roll in on that immaculate ‘gram you just posted. You can check out more recipes in this post or in this article from Buzzfeed.

Pineapple Boats

Whether on tumblr or Instagram, we’ve all seen the artsy pictures of a pineapple boat with a tropical sunset in the background. No matter where in the world you are – a tropical island or just your own kitchen – you too can have a pineapple boat in hand. They are actually super easy to make. The hardest part is deciding between savory and sweet.

The savory option fills the boat with teriyaki chicken and white rice to create a mouthwatering, protein-packed combination. The sweet option uses any mixed fruit you want to turn the pineapple into a serving vessel for a beautiful fruit salad. Either option is sure to please, both aesthetically and taste-wise.


If you haven’t heard of jackfruit yet, you soon will. This funky looking fruit is taking the foodie world by storm. When boiled and shredded, it has the same texture as pulled meats like pork. Adventurous eaters all over are using pulled jackfruit in recipes typically reserved for meats.

Whether in tacos, sandwiches or stuffed inside rangoons, jackfruit is making an appearance. This recipe turns the giant green fruit into a great summer barbecue treat.

Charcuterie Boards

Charcuterie boards are the more sophisticated way to eat cheese and crackers. The variety of meats and cheeses are sure to please any crowd, and they look great all put together. While many charcuterie boards look complicated and overwhelming, they are actually pretty easy to accomplish. First, you’re going to want to pick a good assortment of cheeses with different textures and flavor profiles to balance each other out.

You’re also going to want a variety of meats to go with your cheeses. With local butcher shops on the rise, it is easy to find some really cool sausages and artisanal sliced meats. If you give your guests variety with the meats and cheese, they’re going to want variety in their crackers and bread too.

Make sure you’re mixing hard, crunchy crackers and softer sliced baguettes to go with the different textures of the cheeses. It’s probably best to stay away from bold flavors on the bread front or else they will take away from the various flavor profiles of the cheeses. You may want to include a spread or too like a nice mustard or tapenade. To top it all off, be sure to include fresh, seasonal fruits and pickled garnishes like olives or gherkins.

However you choose to up your Instagram foodie game, be sure to tag us in your photos!

Stay connected and follow @MiamiUDining on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram!






Seventh Inning Stretch Dinner Recap

Another year, another tasty Seventh Inning Stretch Dinner! Back at Martin Dining Hall after being held at Garden Commons a year ago, our annual Seventh Inning Stretch Dinner is a fun baseball-themed special dinner, and one of our favorites to host. Featuring a menu straight from the ballpark, this year was another fun addition to this spring tradition!

Students from across campus joined us at Martin Dining Hall for a menu featuring authentic stadium fare like soft pretzels, boneless wings, mini corn dogs, mozzarella sticks, nachos, popcorn and more. There was a burger and hot dog bar (and brats), where guests could stack their stadium eats with their favorite toppings, or guests could opt for pulled pork, fresh from The Q. Items like pita chips and hummus, grilled chicken, black bean burgers and more offered tasty alternatives to the traditional ballpark staples. Of course, ice cream, cookies and cupcakes were on the menu for dessert as well!

We hope everyone enjoyed our baseball celebration, and the special menu, as much as we enjoyed hosting it! Check out our Facebook album for more photos from the dinner and keep tabs on our upcoming special events on social media (Hint: a similar menu will be served at Bell Tower very soon)!

Stay connected and follow @MiamiUDining on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram!






Baseball and Food: A Love Story

With all the crazy new food innovations happening in ballparks across America, it’s easy to wonder how it all started. Today, ballpark menus can span a wide range of flavors and types of food, but hot dogs have always been a staple of the baseball experience. While the exact origin of the hot dog itself is unclear, one of the most famous tales is that of Charles Feltman.

This butcher of German ancestry started a cart in Coney Island in 1867 from which he sold hot sausages on rolls. Soon the cart expanded into a big business. Then, according to History.com, a bread slicer at Feltman’s started his own stand in 1916, selling hot dogs for half the price. The bread-slicer’s name was Nathan Handwerker, the namesake for Nathan’s Famous hot dog brand sold in many ballparks across the country.

The earliest account of baseball and hot dogs becoming a pair tracks back to 1892 when Chris Von der Ahe began selling the treat at his ballpark in St. Louis. The peak season for hot dog consumption takes place from Memorial Day to Labor Day during which time Americans consume approximately seven billion hot dogs (yes, billion). While some of this consumption can be attributed to cookouts and other summer fun, at least 30 million hot dog sales each year can be attributed to ballpark concession stands.

As for snacks, each MLB team sells around 70,000 bags of peanuts each season. While peanuts were originally a snack of the lower class, they became a popular energy source for soldiers on both sides of the Civil War. After the war, their popularity only grew and they soon tagged along in the pockets of attendees of America’s Favorite Pastime. Discarded peanut shells quickly littered ballparks nationwide. Now, many fans can’t attend a game without a pouch of peanuts on their person.

As the song goes, “buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jacks,” but where did this iconic treat come from? This popcorn-based delicacy was introduced by Frederick and Louis Rueckheim at the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair. In 1896, the creation received it’s current name of Cracker Jack, which at the time meant something was awesome. A decade later, the baseball game favorite was included in Jack Norworth And Albert Von Tilzer’s song “Take Me Out to the Ballgame”. According to history.com, the first Cracker Jack box prize appeared in 1912 and more than 23 billion tiny treasures have been distributed to this day.

If you’re favorite part of any baseball game is the food, you’re in good company. Today, concessions companies compete to outdo each other with the most outrageous creations. This season, MLB fans can keep an eye out for such offerings as the “Burgerizza” which, according to theweek.com, is a 20-ounce bacon cheeseburger with two personal pizzas as the buns.

Fans of the Atlanta Braves can look forward to a “Hot Dog Sundae” while Ranger’s fans can look out for the “Sweet Spot Cotton Candy Dog” — a hot dog topped with cotton candy.

Hungry yet? Join us at Martin Dining Hall on April 12 from 5-8pm for our Seventh Inning Stretch Dinner. The menu will feature a hot dog bar, with your choice of toppings, and many more tasty food straight from the ballpark! Share your favorite with us!

Stay connected and follow @MiamiUDining on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram!






Student Employee Spotlight: Ryan Bengel

Ryan Bengel is a freshman marketing major from the Queen City (Cincinnati, OH). Among the various extracurriculars Bengel participates in on campus, Bengel is an Evans Scholar and a Miami University Wounded Warrior Project Ambassador. You’ve also probably seen him serving up delicious food at Bell Tower Place.

This week, we decided to ask him a few of the “hard-hitting” questions we love.

Q: If you could be any kitchen utensil, which kitchen utensil would you be?

A: Spongebob’s right hand man, the spatula.

Q: What is the coolest place you’ve been?

A: Bobsledding in Lake Placid, NY.

Q: What do you want to be when you grow up?

A: Head of Marketing for a professional sports franchise.

Q: What is your favorite place to eat on campus?

A: Delish.

Q: What would you want to be famous for?

A: Giving dogs the ability to talk.

Q: If your life was a book, what would be the title?

A: The Comeback Kid

Q: Who would you want to play you in a movie about your life?

A: Tom Hanks.

Q: What is your go-to fun fact?

A: I’m faster than 80% of snakes – Dwight Schrute.

Q: To where do you most want to travel?

A: Italy.

Q: What one meal would you eat for the rest of your life?

A: Pizza.

Q: When are you happiest?

A: Listening to music.

Q: If you could only listen to one song for the rest of your life what song would it be?

A: “Bounce It” by Juicy J.

Q: What is your spirit animal?

A: More like spirit creature … the minions from Despicable Me.

Q: What are you currently binge-watching?

A: The Office … again.

Q: If you could be anyone dead or alive for one day who would you be?

A: Elon Musk.

Q: What would your band be named?

A: Threat Level Midnight.

Interested in joining our team? Apply for a job in dining services today at miamioh.hiretouch.com! We have a number of exciting opportunities available across campus!

Stay connected and follow @MiamiUDining on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram!






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