“My goal is simple; I want to have these students eat the way I would want my own children to eat,” explained Chef Azmin, who is a father of four, residing in Orange County. “When I originally set out to instill change by implementing the Sapphire at School program, I dreamed of the day when I would be providing students at nearly a dozen schools in the county with fresh, healthy meals designed to develop a lifetime of healthy eating habits.”
The Sapphire at School program was founded by noted Chef Azmin Ghahreman to nourish and educate young people for a lifetime of well-being. The program is overseen by doctors, dietitians, market trend experts, educators, headmasters, and students to ensure its ongoing success. The menus, created by Chef Azmin, offer a variety of flavors and choices, and based on the Mediterranean Diet, they focus on healthy whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, nutritious legumes, herbs, and spices to create bold, exciting flavors. The program offers servings of lean meats, all-natural poultry and eggs, hormone-free dairy products, and, in spare amounts, sweets such as homemade cookies. Special attention is given to dietary restrictions, with menus available to accommodate celiac and diabetic requirements. Additionally, peanuts have been removed from the menu to mitigate allergic reactions, in addition to the omission of trans fats, additives or preservatives. Menus are published online for parents to review and pre-order special meals. Meals are created both in on-site kitchens at schools, or in Sapphire at School’s own 5,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art facility and then delivered in temperature-controlled trucks.
Participating schools currently include:
ST. ANNE SCHOOL Laguna Niguel
ST. MARGARET’S EPISCOPAL SCHOOL San Juan Capistrano
SAGE HILL SCHOOL Newport Beach
El SOL | Santa Ana Science and Arts Academy Santa Ana
HARBOR DAY SCHOOL Corona Del Mar
ST. MARY’S SCHOOL Aliso Viejo
THE PEGASUS SCHOOL Huntington Beach
ST. CATHERINE OF SIENA PARISH SCHOOL Laguna Beach
ST. EDWARD THE CONFESSOR PARISH SCHOOL Dana Point
SANTA MARGARITA CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOL Rancho Santa Margarita
MAGNOLIA SCIENCE ACADEMY Santa Ana
For more information in the Sapphire at School program, please visit http://www.sapphireatschool.com/.
Noted Local Chef Azmin Ghahreman, founder of Sapphire at School, has announced that his initiative will now reach more than 3,500 new Orange County students as it spreads to four additional locations in the region. Adding to seven schools already involved with the program, Chef Azmin and his team will be able to serve a total of 8,000 students at 11 schools on any given school day beginning with the 2015-16 school year.
New schools now added to the Sapphire at School full service lunch program include, Harbor Day in Corona del Mar, St. Catherine Of Siena Parish School in Laguna Beach, St. Edward The Confessor Parish School in Dana Point, and Santa Margarita Catholic High School in Rancho Santa Margarita.
Designed to serve students ranging from Kindergarten through high school, the menus that Chef Azmin creates for the Sapphire at School program are based on the Mediterranean Diet. His dishes utilize fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. He also incorporates the oils derived from plants and fish that promote the production of good cholesterol and, ultimately, a healthy heart.