086 – Fire, Flour, & Fork, Women in Food.
Kitchen Work. With Badass Women. Welcome to a very special episode! In this season of gratitude, I’m feeling very grateful for Richmond’s Fire, Flour, & Fork festival. Not only did it land me my dream podcast guest, Gabrielle Hamilton (episode up now!), but I was asked to moderate a Women in Food panel with some of the top names in our industry.
Women in Food. Every festival seems to do this. It’s not like when you sign up for your breakout sessions you see a panel called, Men in Food. Is it necessary? Has the conversation been exhausted? Yes and no. As you will hear in this episode recorded just two weeks ago all of our panelists, while somewhat tired of being asked the same questions, feel the conversation must continue, particularly in light of the recent allegations against chefs like John Besh.
Who are our panelists? Chef Joy Crump of FoodE and Mercantile in Fredericksburg, Virginia and Season 12 of Top Chef contestant, Kerry Diamond of Cherry Bombe, the new Cherry Bombe cookbook, and Radio Cherry Bombe, Chef Kristen Kish, Season 10 winner of Top Chef and author of the cookbook, Kristen Kish Cooking: Recipes and Techniques, and Chef Jessica Wilson, who will open her restaurant Grace in the Chimborazo neighborhood of Richmond, Virginia next spring. We discuss the dynamic between men and women in the kitchen, the disparity between gender images projected by the industry and the market’s expectations, recipe development, core values and goals, sexual harassment, and much much more. As I said in my last episode, so much happens when you choose to just show up for your life. Enjoy!
Speakers you will hear in this episode:
Joy is the co-owner and Executive Chef of FOODE and Mercantile in Fredericksburg, Virginia. A graduate of the Art Institute of Atlanta’s Culinary Arts program, Joy specializes in researching and preparing locally grown, and organic foods. Her career began in Los Angeles working as the caterer and event planner for the President of Capitol Records. At the same time, she worked on private events for Warner Bros. Television. In 2005, Joy relocated to Atlanta where she studied under Chef Bradley Rouse, head chef for The Atlanta Hawks while working on her degree. After graduation, Joy began cooking at Woodfire Grill as an apprentice to Chef Micahel Tuohy. Joy appeared in Season 12 of Top Chef last fall and her signature Chicken & Waffles won the Virginia is for Lovers Culinary Madness Challenge in April.
Kerry is the co-founder of Cherry Bombe, an independent, bi-annual magazine examining the inexplicably intertwined worlds of food and fashion and host of the weekly Radio Cherry Bombe podcast. Kerry has worked for Women’s Wear Daily, Harper’s Bazaar, Lancome, and Coach just to name a few. After falling in love with a chef, she helped him open 3 restaurants, all in Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn. Cherry Bombe the cookbook is a collection of recipes and stories from 100 of the most creative and inspiring women in food today.
Kristen was born in Seoul, South Korea, adopted at the age of 4 months, and grew up in Michigan. After attending Le Cordon Bleu in Chicago, she worked for Michelin star chef Guy Martin of Le Grand Véfour at his Boston restaurant. She then worked for Barbara Lynch in Boston, first at Stir, and then at Menton, a Relais Chateaux restaurant which she ran when she was 29. Barbara became a mentor, suggesting she might want to audition for Top Chef. She did, winning Season 10. Kristen has co-hosted the series 36 Hours on The Travel Channel and her first cookbook, Kristen Kish Cooking, is a celebration of her taste buds, focusing on classic techniques. As she says, “Once you know the basics, from braising to pickling, smoking to searing, you can bend them to your will.”
Jessica has worked with, been taught by, and inspired and motivated by chefs such as Julia Child, Gabrielle Hamilton, Missy Robbins, and Job Yacubian. She’s always been surrounded by the culinary arts from her early years growing up on a farm in Vermont to working with culinary historians to foraging on morning walks to her first job as a dishwasher at age 14. Wilson’s two-decade career has taken her from Vermont to Florida to Massachusetts, and on to success in the East Village and Brooklyn in New York. Her resume includes time at Prune and A Voce, and most recently turns as executive chef at Goat Town and the Michelin-recommended Dear Bushwick. Jessica is now poised to open GRACE in Richmond, a neighborhood garden-to-table restaurant with an emphasis on fresh, sustainable, local, and affordable. The green space of the double lot will be a seasonal garden, providing for the restaurant and a morning community market.
SHOW NOTES – Links to resources talked about during the podcast:
- Foggy Ridge Cider – Owner Diane Flynt is stopping cider production, but continuing her important work growing cider apples for area cideries. Get the Final Call while it’s still available! Then rent her garden cottage. Heaven on earth.
- Tim & Sarah Gorman, Cardinal Point Winery – Just amazing wine. Listen to their episode!
- Laurie Colwin – Great cookbooks, full of story. Laurie left us way too early.
- Edna Lewis’s A Taste of Country Cooking – The gold standard when it comes to intertwining recipes and story.
- Subscribe to This Podcast. Stay Edacious! – Come on, after this episode? You know you want to. Subscribers get new episodes instantly, while non-subscribers have to wait a few hours or days depending on the iTunes gods. Never miss a chance to be edacious!
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