It's official! We've launched our Spring 2019 menu, and we pulled Chef Michael Mormino aside to get his behind-the-scenes look at what’s new and delicious.
GMM: For starters, you have a pretty interesting background – give us a brief bio!
MM: I was born in a great food town – Memphis, TN, where I worked at Kraft Food Ingredients on a team that created seasonings, sauces and fillings for household brands like Doritos, Knorr and Keebler.
After moving to Atlanta, I was offered a scholarship to attend the American Culinary Federation’s apprenticeship program, and then moved to Paris, France to study at L Cordon Bleu’s Paris campus. While in France, I taught and cooked medieval and renaissance gastronomy in a 15th century kitchen in the Burgundy region.
As the regional research and Development Chef for Whole Foods Market’s southern region for close to a decade, my team and I created many of the healthy dishes you know and love, including recipes for Whole Foods’ Health Starts Here line.
My work here at Good Measure Meals and Open Hand Atlanta lets me stay even more focused on healthy eating and its connection to reversing chronic health conditions such as diabetes and hypertension.
My wife and I were high school sweethearts and we still manage to find interesting things out about each other. When we lived in Europe, we loved being so close to the source for all the food we cooked and ate. Our son is a young foodie who loves to make crepes and just discovered escargot this week – and now he wants to cook his own snails.
GMM: With such a diverse food background, what keeps you here at Good Measure Meals and Open Hand?
MM: As the corporate foodscape changes, I see “healthy branded” companies drifting away from truly healthy foods in favor of riding the latest trend. By contrast, we at Good Measure Meals are led by evidence-based, dietitian-vetted meals that refreshingly aren’t dictated by the latest fad. In working within the food-as-medicine sphere at Open Hand Atlanta and Good Measure Meals, I’ve seen the amazing results that diet and nutrition have in reversing chronic health issues. I’m living proof that these changes work, having made radical changes to my diet and lifestyle which have led to truly life-changing results. The broader reach that Good Measure Meal’s proceeds provide for our non-profit Open Hand Atlanta, allowing us to reach even more clients who need our help, is a daily inspiration for me.
GMM: What’s your favorite recipe on the spring menu that’s coming back?
MM: I love our Provencal Bean Cake and our Provencal Chicken. They are really close to the way I’d make them at home, and they remind me of really great times I’ve had with family bicycling in the south of France.
GMM: And now, what’s your favorite new menu item for spring?
MM: Wow. I have a few standouts. The Smoked Gouda Schmear that’s coming up in some of our breakfasts is so good it should be illegal. On the opposite end of the spectrum, our Strawberry Basil Cream Cheese is light and spreadable like a strawberry crème fraiche, so a really great item for spring. I love Mediterranean flavors year round so I’m looking forward to Good Measure Meals making my Shrimp Veracruz, which is truly like I’d make at home for my family.
GMM: That Smoked Gouda Schmear has been a runaway team favorite!
To close us out, what’s something interesting about our menu development process that you think people should know?
MM: The input from all parts of the Good Measure Meals team is really valuable. We look at not only our personal favorites, but dig into concepts and flavors from top food bloggers and chefs. When you eat our meals, you’re looking at a diverse cross-section across the Atlanta foodscape.
GMM: Thank you so much, Michael! We love how this spring menu has come together, and we couldn’t do it without you!