10 Things You Didn’t Know About Sushi

  1. ‘The word “sushi” doesn’t refer to fish at all—it refers to rice that has been seasoned with vinegar, sugar, and salt.
  2. Today’s sushi began as a type of fast food—the 19th-century Japanese equivalent of a McDonald’s drive-thru. It was originally served as a cheap, quick snack to eat with the hands while enjoying a theater performance. Forget the popcorn, pass the sushi!
  3. The knives used by sushi chefs are the direct descendants of samurai swords, and the blades must be sharpened and reshaped every day.
  4. The California roll, or the inside-out roll, was the first American-born type of sushi. Inside-out rolls are the mainstay of sushi in the United States —and are an American invention. They didn’t exist in Japan until recently, when they were imported from the United States.
  5. The priciest ingredient of modern sushi—bluefin tuna belly—was once so despised by the Japanese that it was only used as cat food.
  6. Sushi is supposed to be eaten with the hands. True to its origins as a simple fast food, the correct way to eat sushi is with your fingers. Chopsticks are typically only used to eat sashimi — raw slices of fish.
  7. Even fresh sushi Is frozen first. The United States Food and Drug Administration stipulates that all fish to be eaten raw (with the exception of tuna) must be frozen first, in order to kill parasites.
  8. Maki-zushi isn’t always rolled in seaweed. Although we are most familiar with sushi wrapped in black nori (seaweed), maki-zushi is sometimes wrapped in soy paper, cucumber, or egg in Japan.
  9. Originally, sushi rice was never eaten. Sour, fermenting rice was wrapped around aged fish only to aid in the process of creating umami — a unique, sour taste. Once the fermentation process was complete, the rice was discarded and only the fish was consumed.
  10. The oldest type of sushi in Japan tastes like cheese. Near Lake Biwa in Southern Japan, they still follow old-school, pre-refrigeration sushi techniques of filleting carp, packing those fillets in vinegar rice, and leaving them to age for up to three years. The result is a fermented local delicacy called funazushi that our expert said tastes similar to a pungent cheese.

Now that you’ve learned more about sushi and it’s humble beginnings, be sure to try our sushi offered at a la carte locations on campus. Yes, it’s even available at King Cafe for finals week! Share your favorites with us on any of our social media accounts.



5 Foods to Boost Your Brain Power

During finals week, you may be tempted to live off of what the vending machines offer in whatever building you’ve carved out a little study space inside of. But what if you used the calories you’re going to consume anyway to help you ace those exams? Here is a list of five foods that will help you boost your brain power and make finals week a little more bearable!


Whole grains will supply your brain with a slower, more constant stream of glucose to keep it energized while putting in work. Don’t want to zone out during your group study session? Grab a snack like a small serving of brown rice. Trying not to fall asleep during the exam? Choose a breakfast that includes whole grain, whether that’s in the form of a wholegrain cereal or an English muffin.


The omega-3 fatty acids in salmon aid in the high-speed processing of the brain. Our bodies can easily use the essential fatty acids present in oily fish like salmon and trout. The positive benefits don’t just stop at keeping brain fog at bay, the chemicals found in these fish can also help fight stress and increase production of serotonin.


Despite their size, blueberries are packed with good-for-you stuff like TONS of antioxidants which have been shown to provide a number of benefits when consumed. Blueberries also aid in the prevention of short term memory loss, so you’ll be less likely to blank during that big exam.


In some cases, kale and other leafy greens have been shown to help in the prevention of brain deterioration. They are also packed with vitamins A and K, meaning they help with inflammation and keeping strong bones as well as improving brainpower and cognitive function.


Similar to the leafy greens, broccoli is high in vitamin K which means more brainpower and higher cognitive function for you. Broccoli consumption can also slow the breakdown of certain neurotransmitters like acetylcholine. According to the BBC, Imbalanced acetylcholine levels are linked to Alzheimer’s disease.
Now that you know what to eat for more brain power, get out there and study. Good luck on finals everyone! Stay healthy and study hard.

Student Employee Spotlight: Sydney Kemp

Sydney Kemp is a sophomore information systems and business analytics major from Fishers, Indiana. She is a member of Miami’s club volleyball team and Alpha Kappa Psi Business Fraternity. During the week, you can catch her at Maplestreet Station serving up some delicious foods. We sat down with her to ask her a little more about the girl behind the sneeze guard.

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

A: I would be a spork. How can you beat that versatility?

Q: If your personality was a texture, which texture would it be?

A: The texture of those suuuuper soft blankets. You know what I’m talking about.

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

A: I studied abroad in France last summer, so Toulon on the French Riviera in the south of France was probably the coolest. The Mediterranean Sea, with the pebble beach and villas along the coast was beautiful. Or Turks and Caicos, the water is so clear and beautiful there.

Q: What is the best gift you’ve ever received?

A: When my parents surprised my sisters and I with a cruise for spring break to the Caribbean back in high school. That was my first time out of the country, so that was super exciting and led to a lot of great memories with my family.

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

A: When I grow up, I wanna work in information technology for a Fortune 500 company. I also want to be an A+ parent someday!

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

A: Probably Maplestreet. Since I work there and see what people order all the time, I’ve made so many sandwiches and salads that look amazing and want to try new combinations. I just crave Americas and Delish all the time now.

Q: What would you want to be famous for?

A: Inventing something like a self-charging phone or hovercraft or something cool and techy like that.

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

A: Here’s to Hoping it All Works Out

Q: What is your go-to fun fact? 

A: The average person eats 72 pounds of ketchup in a year.

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

A: Selena Gomez. 

Q: What is your go-to clean joke?

A: Why did the skunk cross the road? To get to the odor side!

Q: To where do you most want to travel?

A: Hawaii! I may be going next winter, which would be amazing. I’ve also always wanted to be Sydney in Sydney, Australia. That’d be cool.

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

A: Pan-fried pork dumplings from P.F. Changs. Arguably not a meal since it’s an appetizer, but they’re sooooo good.

Q: When are you happiest?

A: When I’m with family and friends.

Q: What is the best compliment you’ve ever received?

A: I don’t know if it’s the best, but I love when people compliment my handwriting.

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

A: Somewhere Only We Know by Keane

Q: What is your spirit animal?

A: A sloth, tbh.

Q: What are you currently binge-watching?

A: The Office! Always!

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

A: Barack Obama. He seems like a cool dude. And I’m sure he has had so many amazing experiences after being president for eight years.

Q: What would your band be named?

A: Skempp Inc.

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!

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Recap Ice Cream Extravaganza (Spring 2017)

Highlighted by ice cream and gelato, courtesy of Young’s Jersey Dairy and Miami Ice, Garden Commons played host to another fun rendition of Ice Cream Extravaganza! It was especially enjoyable for those with a sweet tooth!

Young’s Jersey Dairy brought a variety of flavors to share with guests, while Miami Ice brought a few of their classics from Armstrong Student Center. Guests also had the opportunity to win prizes from Graeter’s, Spring Street Treats and Mitchell’s Ice Cream, so they could continue the ice cream festivities after the special dinner was over.

Young’s Jersey Dairy, 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.

Miami Ice is located in the Armstrong Student Center. Their delicious gelato is handmade, in-house at Armstrong.

Thank you so much for joining us for Ice Cream Extravaganza!  Keep tabs on our social media accounts so you don’t miss a thing coming to dining!


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How to Survive Finals Week

  1. Plan out your meals ahead of time. Creating a meal plan for the week will keep you fed and energized. Having one less thing to worry about can also reduce some stress. Who wants to be trying to figure out where to eat when you can’t even figure out question one of the practice exam? Need some pointers on meal planning? Check out this post from a few weeks ago!
  2. Make a study schedule. While you’re coming up with a meal plan, go ahead and create a study schedule as well. This will keep you organized and make sure you have enough time to study for every exam. Want to make it more fun? Color-code it with your favorite, brightest colors to help keep everything straight.
  3. Eat a healthy breakfast. Jumpstarting your metabolism early on will help you stay focused throughout the day. Plus, who doesn’t love a good yogurt parfait?
  4. Choose a good studying location. While campus can get crowded during finals week, it’s important to find a study environment that works for you. If you can’t be productive if you’re around your friends, don’t study with them. If the second floor of King isn’t for you, don’t attempt to work there. Throw on some comfy clothes and find a quiet spot that is most your style and you’re set to crush that studying! As far as dining locations go, Maplestreet Station is a good study spot. If you study best in your dorm room, grab a meal to-go from Garden Market or load up on healthy study snacks at Market Street at MacCracken.
  5. Try meditating. Meditating for just 10 minutes can help you destress and focus on the task at hand. There are a bunch of apps for guided mediation and Spotify has a few playlists as well. If you want more tips on how to meditate and the benefits of practicing mediation, read this post!
  6. Workout. Much like meditation, exercise can help you clear your mind, destress, and re-energize you after a grueling study session. Endorphins released during your workout will perk you up, and get you ready for the next exam.
  7. If all else fails, coffee is your friend. Just make sure you’re also drinking a TON of water so you don’t get dehydrated and keep the caffeine intake under control to avoid getting jittery. Green tea is a great alternative.
  8. Let it go. Once the exam is over, it’s over. Don’t let the stress overwhelm you! Treat yourself after a hard exam with your favorite sweet treat, like ice cream from Miami Ice!

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Take a Trip Down Memory Lane

As the semester winds down, make sure to really take it all in before you leave campus. Don’t know where to start? Don’t worry. We’ve created a list of the top places you must visit on your stroll down memory lane.

Take pictures at each stop, tag us, and use the hashtag #MUEats to be entered to win a Fuji Film Instax camera! (Must be following @MiamiUDining on Twitter to win. Winner will be chosen Tuesday, 5/9 at noon.)

  1. Your Old Favorite Dining Hall
    Take a trip to your old favorite dining hall and get all you care to eat like it’s first semester freshman year again.
  2. Dividends Salad
    Everyone loves the Miami University exclusive sweet herb dressing. Throw it on some of Trader Green’s fresh greens and salad fixings and snap a pic!
  3. Wing Wednesday
    Whether you’re getting your wings fix at Wing Bar, Garden Market, Dividends, Martin or Harris, there’s something special about celebrating Wing Wednesday! Celebrate by getting wings in your favorite sauce with a side of celery or carrots.
  4. Miami Ice Gelato
    Handmade ice cream on meal plan … what could be better? Get your favorite flavor and mix-ins. If you don’t have a favorite, try the Miami exclusive Red Brick Bliss ice cream from Young’s Dairy!
  5. The Q
    It’s only been here for this school year, but The Q has quickly become a fan favorite. Get your favorite barbecue dishes and sides. Don’t forget about the loaded nachos or barbecue flatbread pizza!
  6. La Mia Cucina
    La Mia is Miami’s very exclusive sit down restaurant. Get a chicken parm or a fresh panini and sit with your friends in this classic joint located right in Harris Dining Commons.
  7. Late Night Pulley
    Late night and Pulley Diner. Name a more iconic duo … I’ll wait. Got a hankering for mozz sticks at 2:30 AM? Get them from Pulley; open 24/7 and all on meal plan!
  8. Weekend Brunch
    Throw it back to freshman year Sundays recapping the weekend’s events with your friends in the closest dining hall over a delicious brunch spread. Bring your pals and reminisce on all the classic tales of your time here at Miami.
  9. Garlic Bites
    Make sure you bring some gum because once you start eating the garlic bites offered at various locations around campus (Garden Commons is a good start), you won’t be able to stop. These addictive bites of warm, garlicky goodness are sure to satisfy.
  10. Favorite Late Night Study Snack
    Up late studying? Grab your favorite late night study snack from King Cafe and relive the countless study dates you’ve had over the years!
  11. Favorite Ice Cream from the Market
    Whether it’s Ben and Jerry’s, Madisono’s Gelato, Halo Top or another one of your favorite brands, get your favorite pint from Market Street at MacCracken or Emporium and enjoy with friends to cool down on a hot, end-of-semester day.
  12. Scoreboard Market
    Scoreboard Market was a student favorite even before it underwent renovation with Martin Dining Hall last year. It has quickly become a student favorite again, offering all your favorite to-go food making it a great trip down memory lane, especially for those who are graduating. Mini corn dogs? Spicy chicken sandwich? Whatever you fancy, snap a pic and send it our way while you sit back and enjoy Scoreboard’s great variety of a la carte delicacies.

Make sure you keep checking back on any of our social media accounts for updates!

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Getting to Know Brent Mason

After spending the past 21 years with Bob Evans, Brent Mason has been welcomed into the Miami University family with open arms as dining services’ new director of operations. As such, Mason oversees all the food and beverage on campus including our a la carte, convenience store and buffet locations.

We thought we’d take a moment with Mason and get to know a little more about one of the newest faces in our dining services.

Q: How did you get into food service?

A: The main reason was that my wife got pregnant. I was doing construction and did not have insurance. I had a college buddy that was a general manager at Bob Evans. He got me an interview at Bob Evans, so my venture into food service was more family-oriented. I wanted to get insurance for the family and for our child. I ended up staying there 21 years.

Q: Favorite thing in Miami Dining so far?

A: I think the opportunity with Miami. Miami does their own food instead of using an outside company like Aramark. There is so much opportunity for us to continue to improve the quality of the food, the safety of the food and even just in menu selection. We have so much leeway to create different menus.

I think one of our big drives right now, that is pretty cool, is being nut-friendly by next August and pushing to be more gluten-friendly, soy-friendly and really focusing on allergens. We want to make it a healthier place and a more inviting place for people who have special diets. 

Q: Could you briefly describe yourself personally?

A: I would say I’m pretty private about my personal life. I was brought up to be very respectful of others and I think that has carried with me. It’s something I am now trying to pass that onto my children. I also like being around my family.

Q: Do you have a personal philosophy you live by?

A: If you work hard and put the effort into it, you get out what you put in. If you do things halfway, you will never be successful, but by putting the effort in and working your tail off, you get what you earn. I believe in being a hard worker and continuing to learn every day.

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

A: I ride a motorcycle. In nice weather, it’s very freeing and just relaxing to get out and ride. I love doing that. I love going to bike weeks or going on bike trips. It’s very enjoyable to me.

Q: Favorite dish to prepare?

A: I would probably say one of my favorites is chili. You can do a lot of things with it. I don’t really have a set recipe that I follow, but that’s probably my favorite to prepare.

Q: To eat?

A: Lasagna is one of my favorites.

Q: Least favorite food?

A: Just about every vegetable. I’m not a very big vegetable person. I’m definitely not a fan of brussel sprouts. Those would have to be my least favorite.

Q: Favorite TV Show?

A: I watch a lot of TV, but I watch a variety of shows, so I wouldn’t say I have a favorite one right now. The last one I really enjoyed was Sons of Anarchy. Sons of Anarchy was my favorite, but that has been off for a couple years now. 

Q: Cat or Dog?

A: I have a dog.

Q: Cake or Pie?

A: Pie.

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A Brief History of the Picnic

Picnics are a warm-weather classic. Most people picture gingham blankets and hand-woven baskets in the ideal picnic situation, but where did the picnic even come from? Who decided potato salad was a thing?

The origin of picnics track back to the Renaissance. The upper class would go on hunting outings and bring food with them on which they would feast outdoors. In literature from the same time period, Robin Hood and his men dining on simple breads and ales under trees served as a juxtaposition to these elaborate, outdoor dining events.

From there, the Victorian Era brought along a rise in the popularity of the picnic as they became a common social event for the upper echelon of Victorian England society. According to NPR, a popular guidebook for entertaining at the time called Mrs. Beeton’s Book of Household Management, named tables, linens, crystals and servants as essentials for a proper picnic.

Times have certainly changed. Gone are the linens and crystal, replaced with contemporary picnic classics like fried chicken, burgers and hot dogs. Today, picnics are held as school events, teambuilding activities or even just as an outing among friends. While the food served may never truly venture away from the hearty grill favorites, more health-conscious picnic-goers have more options than ever before. Chicken and vegetable skewers or grilled fish have become more popular picnic options and simple substitutions like turkey burgers, chicken sausage, whole wheat buns or even lettuce wraps can be great choices so you can enjoy a picnic without thinking about where those calories are going to sit.

Watermelon is a staple of any picnic event and is a great option just as is, but if you’ve never tried a watermelon and feta salad, now is the time to start. You could even throw the watermelon on the grill! Instead of sugary lemonade, try an agua fresca or a fruit infused water as a refreshing beverage.

Now that you have some background on where the picnic came from and a few pointers on throwing your own, be our guest at the picnic event of the semester — Picnic on the Patio on April 28th at Bell Tower Place from 11am-2pm!

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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!

Stay connected and follow @MiamiUDining on TwitterFacebook and Instagram!