Hispanic American Heritage Month: Bryan

Hispanic American Heritage Month: Bryan Cardona

Bryan Cardona is a Food and Nutrition Services Team Lead at St. Luke’s Hospital. Joining Southcoast Health almost seven years ago, Bryan and his team work together to ensure patients’ nutritional needs are met throughout their stay.

As a team leader, Bryan’s favorite part of his job is leading and supporting staff in meeting operational standards. Providing healthy meals for patients, physicians, nurses, staff and visitors is a true team effort, and he is very grateful for the amazing group he works alongside.

In honor of Hispanic American Heritage Month, Bryan shared how he celebrates his Puerto Rican heritage through food.

“When I find the time, I love to prepare food for family and friends, especially my favorites, which are frituras, alcapurrias and bacalaitos,” he says. “And of course, the holidays would not be the holidays without the staple dishes of Arroz con gandules, Pernil, Pasteles, and a glass of coquito.”  

Bryan’s Favorite Foods: 

  • Frituras – traditional fried foodsAlcapurrias – fritter made from cassava or green banana and taro root based dough stuffed with meat
  • Bacalaitos – salt cod fish fritters
  • Arroz con gandules – rice with pigeon peas
  • Pernil – roast pork shoulder
  • Pasteles – cassava or green banana and taro root based dough stuffed with meat and boiled in a banana leaf, similar to tamales
  • Coquito – spiked coconut eggnog

Celebrating His Heritage

Bryan shared that he did not always know there was a month dedicated to celebrating Hispanic American culture, but he believes it is important to celebrate your culture every day.

“As someone of mixed ethnicity, I believe that my strong family values and work ethic are things that I have learned from my experiences as a person of Hispanic descent. However, I strongly believe that life experiences ultimately will dictate who you are and how you identify,” he says.

Learn more about how Southcoast Health is celebrating Hispanic American Heritage Month and employee diversity.