Do you daydream about dropping everything and opening a restaurant? Have you always wondered what it would be like to start your own line of condiments? So many trailblazers in the food world actually started their careers in entirely different fields. How did these folks decide to hit the brakes, start over, and become inspiring the chefs, entrepreneurs, farmers and activists they are today? Hear their stories and learn how you too can fulfill your food dreams. Join cohosts Vallery Lomas and Ethan Frisch on Why Food? If you made a leap of faith to work in the food industry and want to share your story, please get in touch at [email protected].
Abena Foli: POKS Spices
41:00Join us for a conversation with Abena Foli, who is the founder and co-owner of POKS Spices. Abena was born and raised in Ghana, West Africa, where she lived until 2006 when she immigrated to the United States for her college education. Her passion for food comes from her farmer-father who taught her how to blend spices and to understand the culinary heritage of cooking authentic West African meals.Abena’s food science background and 10 years of corporate food industry experience exposed her to the white space in the food retail environment for West African flavors and foods. Leveraging her background, she started POKS Spices in 2016, developing Spicy Seasonings based on the West African Holy Trinity of chile, ginger, and onion. The mission of POKS Spices is to introduce the American home cook to West African flavors, and they have been featured on Good Morning Texas, The Dallas Business Journal, and Cuisine Noir Magazine.Heritage Radio Network is a listener supported nonprofit podcast network. Support Why Food? by becoming a member!Why Food? is Powered by Simplecast.
Reem Assil: Arab Street Food, California Style
42:35Join us for a conversation with renowned chef and activist Reem Assil. Reem is a Palestinian-Syrian chef based in Oakland, CA, and owner of the nationally acclaimed Reem’s California in Oakland. The restaurant is Reem’s California Mission in San Francisco, inspired by Arab street corner bakeries and the vibrant communities that surround them. Reem has garnered an array of top accolades in the culinary world, including back-to-back James Beard Semifinalist nods for Best Chef: West. She is a graduate of the competitive food business incubator program, La Cocina, business leadership program Centro Community Partners, and Oakland-based business accelerator program ICA: Fund Good Jobs. Before dedicating herself to a culinary career, Reem spent over a decade as a community and labor organizer, building leadership in workers and residents to fight for living wages, affordable housing, and a voice in their jobs and their neighborhoods. Reem sits at the intersection of her three passions: food, community, and social justice. She uses food to invoke the central virtue of her Arab culture — hospitality — to build a strong, resilient, and connected community. Photo Courtesy of Lara Aburamadan.If your food media diet is fueled by HRN, sustain the future of food radiol. Become a monthly sustaining donor at heritageradionetwork.org/donate.Why Food? is Powered by Simplecast.
Ariana Tolka: Balkan Bites
35:22Join us for a conversation with Ariana Tolka, CEO and co-founder of Balkan Bites. They specialize in comfort foods such as burek, a flaky, stuffed phyllo pie that is a daily staple in the Balkans and the Middle East. After years of working for marketing and non-profit organizations, she found her calling—to share and preserve Balkan culture with authentic family recipes that have been passed down through generations.If you count on HRN content, become a monthly sustaining donor at heritageradionetwork.org/donate.Why Food? is Powered by Simplecast.
Bobbie Garbutt: 4th Generation Nutmeg Farmer
39:42Join us for a conversation with Bobbie Garbutt, live from Grenada! A 4th generation cocoa and spice farmer in Grenada, Bobbie didn't envision her career in agriculture. Kicking off working life as a production assistant for a fashion label in London, her curiosity about food systems led her to jump ship and start her own catering company before the pandemic brought it to a grinding halt.The extended time spent at home allowed her to rediscover the unique significance of her mother's family farm in the Caribbean. Now working in regenerative agricultural initiatives across East Africa and Grenada, she's on a mission to inspire a movement back to the land--through making farming prosperous by rewarding good growing.Celebrate HRN’s new look and invest in the future of food radio. Become a monthly sustaining donor at heritageradionetwork.org/donate.Why Food? is Powered by Simplecast.
Samah Dada: Dada Eats
34:35Join us for a conversation with Samah Dada! Samah is a New York City-based recipe developer, food photographer, and blogger behind Dada Eats. Drawing from her Indian heritage and inspired by the foodscapes of London, California, and New York, she is the host of Cooking with Samah Dada on the Today Show’s digital channel.Heritage Radio Network is a listener supported nonprofit podcast network. Support Why Food? by becoming a member!Why Food? is Powered by Simplecast.
Margaret Nyamumbo: Kahawa 1893 Coffee
48:13Join us for a conversation with Margaret Nyamumbo, founder of Kahawa 1893. Margaret is a third generation coffee farmer and grew up on a farm in Kenya before immigrating to the USA. After earning her MBA from Harvard, she went on to work on Wall Street when she rediscovered her passion for coffee. She founded Kahawa 1893 with a mission to close the gender gap in coffee. In Kenya, over 90% of labor in coffee comes from women, but they aren't fairly compensated because they don't own the land. Kahawa 1893 coffee is roasted and distributed from San Francisco and the brand recently launched in Trader Joe's as the first Black & woman-owned coffee brand to launch in the grocery chain.Heritage Radio Network is a listener supported nonprofit podcast network. Support Why Food? by becoming a member!Why Food? is Powered by Simplecast.
Preeti Mistry: Activist Chef
46:00Join us for a conversation with Preeti Mistry, acclaimed chef, author and speaker and two time-nominatee by the James Beard Foundation for Best Chef of the West. They were the Co-Founder & Executive Chef of Navi Kitchen and Juhu Beach Club (both closed) as well as the co-author (with Sarah Henry) of The Juhu Beach Club Cookbook. Born in London and raised in the US, Preeti was a contestant on Top Chef Season 6 and has been featured in numerous publications including Food & Wine Magazine, NY Times, Time Magazine, Bon Appetit, SF Chronicle, Wall Street Journal, Vogue India, Anthony Bourdain’s PARTS UNKNOWN on CNN and the new Netflix show Waffles and Mochi. They are also the host of the new podcast Loading Dock Talks. Since the pandemic, Preeti and their wife Ann Nadeau have been living in the Russian River, Sonoma County, California where they'e been making the best of it hiking in the redwoods, making lots of pizza and volunteering on local regenerative farms.Heritage Radio Network is a listener supported nonprofit podcast network. Support Why Food? by becoming a member!Why Food? is Powered by Simplecast.
Ederique Goudia: Taste the Diaspora Detroit
40:10Join us for a conversation with Ederique Goudia, the Detroit-based chef and entrepreneur. Ederique Goudia is the co-owner and Executive Chef of Gabriel Hall, a restaurant and music venue dedicated to celebrating the food, music, and culture of New Orleans, in the West Village community of Detroit. She also co-founded In the Business of Food, a consulting agency for women and POC-led food businesses. Ederique’s commitment to a more fair, sustainable, and equitable food economy was the cornerstone for her launching Taste the Diaspora Detroit, a celebration of the contributions of African Americans to American cuisine. She also serves as Lead Chef for Make Food Not Waste Upcycling Kitchen, and on the Detroit Food Academy team, where she teaches Detroit youth about culinary entrepreneurship. Most recently, Ederique was one of 20 women selected for the James Beard Foundation's 2020 Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership Fellowship, and is part of the inaugural class of the Detroit Free Press 2021 Food Fighters for her work in aiding those in our community through the pandemic.Heritage Radio Network is a listener supported nonprofit podcast network. Support Why Food? by becoming a member!Why Food? is Powered by Simplecast.
Hetty McKinnon: To Asia with Love
50:11Join us for a conversation with Hetty McKinnon, author of the new cookbook, To Asia with Love. Hetty is is a Chinese-Australian cook and food writer, based in Brooklyn, New York. She is the author of three other bestselling cookbooks: the best-selling Community, Neighbourhood, and the award-winning Family. Hetty is also the editor and publisher of multicultural food journal Peddler, and the host of the magazine’s podcast The House Specials. She is a regular recipe contributor to New York Times Cooking, Bon Appetit, Epicurious, ABC Everyday, and Food & Wine.Heritage Radio Network is a listener supported nonprofit podcast network. Support Why Food? by becoming a member!Why Food? is Powered by Simplecast.
Larissa Zimberoff: Technically Food
54:22Join us for a conversation with journalist Larissa Zimberoff, author of the brand new book, Technically Food: Inside Silicon Valley's Mission to Change What We Eat, from Abrams Press. Larissa covers the intersection of food, technology, and business, and her work has appeared in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg Businessweek, Wired, and more. Larissa often presents on, moderates, and leads panels on food tech including at Stanford, reThink Food, Culinary Institute of America, and more. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.Heritage Radio Network is a listener supported nonprofit podcast network. Support Why Food? by becoming a member!Why Food? is Powered by Simplecast.