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And In the Running for White House Chef …

Toss out the Wonder bread and bring in the veggies.

The President who notoriously wouldn't eat anything "green" or "wet" is being replaced by one who loves his meals straight from the garden.

While George W. Bush spent his two terms scarfing down BLTs, white-bread grilled cheese sandwiches and burgers, President-elect Barack Obama will usher in just as big a culinary makeover as a partisan one.

"Apparently he is not into carbs," says Denver chef Daniel Young, who cooked for Obama at the Democratic National Convention. "I made lots of fresh, healthy foods."

And though the family's been dutifully sampling local specialties like cheese steaks, fried chicken and pizza for the past year on the trail, the White House fridges will be stocked with fresher fare.

"They try to limit the sweets and they include a lot of fruits, vegetables and lean meats in their meals," an Obama pal said. "Of course that isn't always possible when he has been campaigning."

Though the Obama camp says that no decisions have been made yet about who will occupy the kitchen at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., three top chefs have emerged as possible presidential cooking contenders.

Chef: Art Smith

Smith prepared Obama's meal at Oprah Winfrey's star-studded fund-raiser for the candidate at her home. He has won two James Beard Foundation Awards and has cooked for former Florida governors Bob Graham and Jeb Bush.

Current Job: Winfrey's personal chef for the past decade. Owner of Chicago's Table Fifty-Two.

Signature Style: Smith is a proponent of organic foods and fresh local fruits and vegetables. His signature dish is pistachio-crusted chicken breast with coconut-ginger-chili sauce, lo mein noodles and string vegetables.

Chef: Rick Bayless

When Obama and his wife, Michelle, head out for a night in Chicago, they opt for Bayless' Topolobampo.

Current Job: Owner of Chicago Mexican restaurants Topolobampo and Frontera Grill.

Signature Dish: Bayless founded his high-end Mexican restaurants to prove that genuine Mexican cooking can be as sophisticated as French and Italian. His grilled skirt steak tacos with caramelized onions are a favorite.

Chef: Daniel Young

Young cooked for Obama at the Democratic National Convention.

Current Job: Personal chef to Denver Nuggets forward Carmelo Anthony.

Signature Style: Young is a fan of using spices to bring out the flavor in low-calorie dishes. His signature dish is seafood stew with crab-stuffed chicken breasts.


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