The beautiful thing about food is its ability to connect us. Whether celebrating or mourning, food brings people together to nourish us on a physical level, as well as an emotional one. It makes sense then that when Hurricane Sandy hit New Jersey a year ago, mother-daughter duo Cheryl Larkin and Kate Kurelja came up with the idea to bridge the gaps of a disheveled community through food. What was once a mere dream to team up for a cookbook project now became a reality as the women rifled through different ways of how they could contribute to the devastation.
“Savoring the Shore” became more than just a project – it become a purpose. One that has attracted some big names in the local food game, including Chopped champion Chef Eric LeVine (NJ restaurateur), Top Chef Masters’ Chef David Burke (NJ native), James Beard Award-winning Chef Michel Richard, and five chefs from Hell’s Kitchen Seasons 11 and 12: Barret Beyer, Jessica Lewis, Amanda Giblin, Jacqueline Baldassari, and Justin Antiorio. Of course, the project isn’t about boasting the contribution of celebrity chefs - “Savoring the Shore” also includes recipes from local vendors and food personalities.
The funds raised by the book will be directed to people who have been displaced from the tragedy, including establishments - everything from bakeries to bait shops - that have been forced to close down because of unmanageable repair costs.
“Savoring the Shore” includes more than 150 total recipes – from both celebrity chefs and home cooks, and will be available on November 1st. This isn’t just a story about tragedy, it’s about how a couple of foodies got the chance to rub elbows with celebrity chefs and home cooks, follow their dream of publishing their recipes, and, most importantly, helping those in need.
Read more about the cause here.