NGI Celebrates 40 Years as Leaders in Health Supportive Culinary Education

We were thrilled to welcome board members, faculty, staff, alumni, students, influencers, and media at our NGI “home” for a celebration of our 40th Anniversary this week.

The school was transformed into a magical space celebrating the history of the school, the memory of founder Annmarie Colbin, PhD, as well as the accomplishments of the school and our alumni community. An entire room dedicated to Dr. Colbin contained videos of her speaking engagements in which she emphasized the fact that what people eat affects their health, and in order to eat a healthier diet, people should follow her Seven Principles of Food Selection: foods should be whole, seasonal, local, fresh, traditional, balanced, and delicious. “Our founder was part of the better food movement before there was a better food movement,” says Jonathan Cetnarski, President and CEO. “It is incredibly inspiring to be celebrating 40 years as a culinary institution, and we are excited to continue shaping the future of food by educating the next generation of chefs for another 40 plus years!” During the evening, our own Chef Elliott Prag demonstrated three recipes that highlighted plant-based, whole foods.

  • Hijiki Caviar with Tofu Crema and watercress on Cucumber Rounds
  • Tea Smoked Savory Seed Granola, Market Greens, and Strawberry Hibiscus Vinaigrette
  • Black Sesame Tuiles with Baby Kale-Matcha and Black Sesame Ice Cream

“I’m mega chuffed to celebrate our 40th anniversary with my colleagues, friends, and students, and to do what I do best: demonstrating fresh, healthy dishes in our inimitable NGI style,” said Chef Elliott, Chef Instructor and Curriculum Development Manager at NGI. Five alumni who have continued to uphold the values and the ideas of NGI were honored during the evening. These honorees were nominated by their fellow alumni and received awards and recognition for their efforts.

  • Neal Harden, Chef de Cuisine, abcV, @chefnealh
  • Diana Pappas, President, CEO, This Pie Is Nuts, @thispieisnuts
  • Laura Pole, President, Eating for a Lifetime, Head Chef / Director of Nourishment Education Programs, Smith Center for Healing and the Arts
  • Elliott Prag, Chef Instructor / Curriculum Development Manager, Natural Gourmet Institute, @elliottprag
  • Marion Williams, Nutritional Chef / Program Manager, Wellness in the Schools

Our guests enjoyed foods prepared by NGI chefs. Foods included charcoal crackers with arctic char gravlax, black pepper crème fraiche, and crispy leeks; rainbow root vegetable latkes with pear-fennel marmalade and smoked crema; dark chocolate truffles with pistachios and white and black sesame seeds; and more! All of the dishes represent NGI’s philosophy, and many are mindful of different eating preferences including vegetarian, vegan, gluten free, and nut free. A special thanks to our partners for helping make this evening possible: Katchkie Farms, Aero Farms, Kamut Wheat, Down East Seafood, Pilot Kombucha, Macari Vineyards, Island to Island Brewery, Davines, Jarry Magazine, JetBlue, La Tourangelle, OXO, and The Flower School.

 Click here for more photos from the event!


This post was originally published by the Natural Gourmet Institute. Learn more about today's Natural Gourmet Center.


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