By Dame Veronica Hastings
The Chicago chapter was well represented–in both enthusiasm and numbers– at the recent Les Dames d’Escoffier International annual conference in Washington D.C. Eighteen chapter members attended the educational and inspirational event, including five first-time attendees.
Keynote Speaker Susan Ungaro, President of the James Beard Foundation spoke of the need for diversity in ethnicity and sex in the food world. She issued a call to action for the media and us all to develop and promote “people of color” in our culinary world. Inspired by her call to action, Dame Phaedra Ruffalo, Mentorship Chair, immediately reached out to Ungaro after the address to enlighten her about our recent Scholarship recipients on behalf of attaining this goal to create a more diverse multicultural culinary world.
Food Historian Dame Joan Nathan spoke about the “Mash Up” trend in cuisine, as illustrated in her newest book, King Solomon’s Table, a six-year, heavily researched book documenting recipes and stories of food from a millennia ago and how they have evolved today across the U.S. and Canada. Nathan may be coming to Chicago for part of her book tour and Dame Julie Ratowitz is coordinating this visit with her so stay tuned for details!