Why Food?

Why Food?

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 whyfood@heritageradionetwork.org.

Episodes

July 22, 2021 42 min

Join 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...

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Join 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...

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Join 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 h...

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July 2, 2021 34 min

Join 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.

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Join 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 th...

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June 17, 2021 46 min

Join 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 featu...

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Join 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 ...

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June 3, 2021 50 min

Join 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 ...

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Join 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 te...

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May 20, 2021 44 min

Join us for a conversation with Yao Zhao, founder of 50Hertz Sichuan Pepper. Born and raised in Chongqing, China, he is an economist and clean energy expert, and has worked in China, India, the Middle East, and currently in Washington DC. Yao started the company based on the belief that Sichuan pepper and its tingly numbing sensation will strike a chord with foodies everywhere. When Yao is not making Sichuan pepper oil, you'll ...

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May 13, 2021 41 min

Join us for a conversation with Peter Reinhart, Chef on Assignment at Johnson & Wales University in Charlotte, NC. In addition to his role as a chef instructor in the Baking & Pastry program, Peter teaches a course on food media, and he is also the founder and executive director of the Johnson & Wales International Symposium on Bread. (www.breadsymposium.com

Peter is the author of 13 books on bread, food & culture,...

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May 12, 2021 49 min

Join us for a conversation with Rob Dunn, professor of applied ecology and author of the new book Delicious, about the ways that flavor has influenced human evolution. The book is a fascinating look at how humans have always thought about flavor, and how our search for delicious things to eat has supported our evolution, contributed to our diverse cuisines and cultures, and driven interactions with our natural and built environment...

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Join us for a conversation with Ann Armbrecht, director of the Sustainable Herbs Program of the American Botanical Council, and author of the new book The Business of Botanicals. She is a writer and anthropologist (PhD, Harvard 1995) whose work explores the relationships between humans and the earth, most recently through her work with plants and plant medicine. She is the co-producer of the documentary Numen: The Nature of Plants,...

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April 16, 2021 43 min

Join us for a conversation with Alex Godin, founder of Lemontree, a non-profit that helps hungry people find free food. He started his career when he was still in high school–dropping out to raise $1M in venture funding for his first startup. Since then he's organized a celebrity telethon with stars like Herbie Hancock and Judd Apatow, an adult summer camp, and the internet's premier destination for hand-painted oil paintin...

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Join us for a conversation with Suresh Pillai and Carrie Dashow, the married co-founders of Atina Foods. They adapt traditional Ayurvedic recipes to incorporate global and locally available produce for their unusually delicious, fermented, and preserved condiments that help to balance your health and life. Based in Catskill, New York, Atina Foods' handcrafted condiments add flavor complexity in a simple spoonful to home-cooked ...

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April 2, 2021 40 min

Join us for a conversation with Sue Bette, owner of Bluebird Barbecue in Burlington, Vermont. Sue is a James Beard Award-nominee and former educator who uses her restaurants to build a connection between food, health, and mental well-being. She is a member of the Leadership group of the Independent Restaurant Coalition, and the recent co-founder of Vermont Independent Restaurants, an emerging coalition to preserve and advance the V...

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Join us for a conversation with Andre Springer, Founder of Shaquanda Will Feed You. Andre was born in the Bedford Stuyvesant neighborhood of Brooklyn, NY, and is of Barbadian descent. Andre began performing in the streets and bars of NYC at the age of 20, with much of his art being the creation of his drag alter ego, Shaquanda Coca Mulatta. The body of Andre's work has been in performance, sculpture, and film. While manifesting...

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March 18, 2021 47 min

Nicole Januarie is a Director/Producer of Vallery's new series, Vallery Bakes Your Questions, on Food Network. Nicole partners with brands and individuals to assess how to creatively communicate their message through strong and impactful content. After more than a decade of ideating, strategizing, producing, and directing videos for multi-million dollar brands and start-ups, Nicole has learned what truly drives conversations an...

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March 12, 2021 53 min

Join us for a conversation with Manal Kahi, co-founder and CEO of Eat Offbeat, a refugee-driven food company that delivers authentic eats & treats made by refugees who now call New York City home. Manal moved to NYC to pursue a career in environmental affairs, but the Hummus she found in grocery stores led her on a different journey. She founded Eat Offbeat to help New Yorkers discover authentic cuisines from around the world a...

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March 6, 2021 41 min

Join us for a conversation with Deb Perelman, author of the legendary blog Smitten Kitchen. Deb is a self-taught home cook, photographer, and the creator of smittenkitchen.com, as well as the author of the New York Times bestselling cookbooks "The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook" and "Smitten Kitchen Every Day." Deb lives in New York City with her husband and their two children.

Photo Courtesy of Christine Han.

Heritage Radi...

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