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Chef Dayanny de la Cruz

Food

The Super Bowl’s first female chef talks about feeding 65,000+ people

As the first female chef to host the Super Bowl, Centerplate’s Executive Chef Dayanny de la Cruz, originally from the Dominican Republic, shares what goes into feeding 65,000+ people in one night. She also believes that being a woman isn't what makes leading such a large team special.

On the biggest night at Miami's Hard Rock Stadium, she believes:

“It should be special because we’re in Miami. It should be special because I’m able to touch guests in a different way because of where I come from.”

As the first female Head Chef to have managed the kitchens of the Super Bowl, in February 2020, Dayanny De La Cruz and a team of 100+ chefs introduced 65,000+ fans to the tastes of regional South Florida cuisine. In addition to the many products from local suppliers, the offering included vegetarian dishes, including the Impossible Burger. With increasingly personalized services and major initiatives to phase out single-use plastic, such as replacing cups and bottles with aluminum, fans of one of the most famous sporting events in the world were offered a diverse, sustainable and unforgettable experience.

Since March 2020, faced with Covid-19-related event cancellations, the Dayanny De La Cruz and her team redirected their efforts to produce nearly 10,000 meals a day for homebound senior citizens, working in close collaboration with Miami-Dade County and DeliverLean. They also partnered with the Miami Dolphins Foundation to produce boxed meals for local schools, shelters and missions. As of August 31, more than 1 million meals had been distributed among the different programs. 

“The Super Bowl and the commitment of my entire team to making it a successful experience is something I will never forget. But after that, we took on another role: helping the most vulnerable among us.”
 

Learn more about game day food, and how Sodexo seamlessly manages major events.

February 04, 2020

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