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Susur Lee goes all Jamie Oliver with new TDSB cafeteria initiative

Lee’s own sons went to public school, and were thus exposed to the wonders of TDSB cafeterias (Image: Karoylne Ellacott)

Last year, the Toronto District School Board closed 32 of its cafeterias after the province set stricter guidelines about serving healthy food in schools, sending unimpressed students scurrying off-campus for lunch. Now the board has brought in Susur Lee, fresh off the opening of Bent, to help “spice up” the cafeteria’s menus, as the Toronto Star puts it. “Back in Asia, it’s all about variety,” Lee, who never had the pleasure of eating his way through a Canadian education, told Here and Now. “A lot of vegetables, great seasonal stuff. What I see [here] is very stale. People don’t have creativity.” The hope is that Lee’s celeb-chef status and television fame will help get students engaged with more creative menus (which will also be more healthy than the pizza and french fries that are part of a balanced teenaged diet). The board has begun a student consultation process on students’ home turf (i.e., Facebook and Twitter) to determine what they’d like to eat. (We’re not sure that this Skittles burger will make the cut, but it’s pretty neat, regardless.) [Toronto Star]