Just as Remy, the rat-turned-chef from Disney and Pixar’s “Ratatouille,” guided chef-in-training Linguini to culinary stardom in the 2007 animated film, Dole is encouraging aspiring chefs of all ages to cook for their families at home. The “Now We’re (All) Cooking” initiative shows that anyone can cook if they have recipes, inspiration, and of course, the freshest fruits and vegetables as ingredients.
The unique fall initiative features three months of original recipes, along with serving suggestions, digital and social activations, trivia, and family-friendly activities, all inspired by Remy, Linguini, Collette, Anton, and other characters from Chef Auguste Gusteau’s Paris restaurant.
“While the coronavirus has reunited many with their kitchens, there is still the widespread misperception that cooking is difficult, and if you weren’t taught to cook at an early age, it’s too late to learn,” said William Goldfield, Dole’s director of communications. “Of course, as Remy, Linguini, and Chef Gusteau taught us, nothing could be further from the truth. Anyone really can cook if given the ingredients and inspiration – and this new program was designed to go beyond the recipes to motivate cooks and chefs at all levels to spice up their culinary routines this fall and winter, turning their kitchens into would-be restaurants for the holidays.”
The first sign of Dole’s Paris-inspired celebration came in May when images of Remy and Linguini showed up on millions of Dole bananas and pineapples in North American supermarkets. Since then, Goldfield said, Dole has worked closely with Disney and Pixar to create 20 easy-to-make interpretations of dishes either inspired by the film—like the Little Chef Potato-Leek Soup and the signature Critic’s Choice Rustic Ratatouille—or by the flavors of French cuisine.
Here are the first 10 recipes that are posted in the Dole recipe library (the other ten character-inspired recipes will be revealed later this fall):
- Air Fried Sweet Frites with Pineapple Sauce – This healthier take on the quintessential French side dish features air-fried Dole sweet potatoes with a spicy dip made with Dole pineapple, jalapeño peppers, honey, and apple cider vinegar.
- Berry French 75 Mocktail – Fill your champagne flute with this sparkling blend of Dole lemon juice muddled with Dole blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries.
- Critic’s Choice Rustic Ratatouille – The signature dish for the campaign combines Dole red onion, cauliflower, and broccoli with bell peppers, eggplant, and zucchini in a dish even the critic Anton would love.
- Famous Remy Ratatouille Omelet – Add some of the Rustic Ratatouille into a fluffy omelet to create a vegetable-rich dish that’s delicious any time of day.
- Little Chef Potato-Leek Soup – The dish that accidentally started it all for Linguini and Remy gets a healthy update with Dole cauliflower, carrots, celery, and, of course, potatoes – plus leeks and spices.
- Five-Star Vegan Cheese Spread – Made with a blend of Dole potatoes, cashews, cloves, and vegan cream cheese, this dip is perfect on sliced Dole broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, apples, or a whole-wheat baguette.
- Gusteau Scallop and Pineapple Salad – Dole plantains, pineapples, and Spring Mix combined with large sea scallops create a light French-inspired meal.
- Oui Oui Wafer Banana Macarons – The classic Parisienne cookie gets a Dole twist with Dole bananas, kiwi, mandarin oranges, and vegan cream cheese.
- Tuna au Poivre & Radish-Cucumber Crunch Salad – This simple café-worthy salad gets its name from thick tuna steaks, and its “joie de vivre” from the Dole chopped Sunflower Crunch salad kit.
- Tuna Café Sandwiches – Arrange slices of Tuna au Poivre & Radish-Cucumber Crunch Salad onto a whole-wheat baguette and add marinated artichokes and Dole butter lettuce leaves for a perfect lunch.
Aspiring chefs can also click here to download and print cooking-themed activities, including Banana Sticker Peel-and-Play collectors’ sheets, DIY menus and cookbooks, Dole and Disney placemats, a printable chef’s hat, and Remy holiday gift tags (complete with a recipe for Dole Whip). Plus, the “Now We’re (All) Cooking Virtual Cooking Class” proves there can never be too many cooks in the kitchen (or on Zoom).
The initiative caps off a year-long celebration of Pixar Animation Studios, which is part of a long-term nutritional alliance with The Walt Disney Company designed to make healthy eating and a diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables more fun and accessible.
“Research suggests that families that cook together are happier, eat better and live longer, while other studies show that […] eating together as a family offers both physical and mental health benefits,” Goldfield said. “It appears that Remy was right all along.”