Last weekend, Chef Marcus Samuelsson was promoting his new cookbook The Red Rooster Cookbook and participated in events around the Bay Area. On one evening, he collaborated with the People’s Kitchen Collective to provide an unforgettable dining experience.

“This is a meal from Harlem to Oakland. Of Red Roosters and Black Panthers. This is a story of the pots pans, spices herbs, hands and recipe that give us home. These are recipes for comfort. This is a meal to bring our people together in celebration of resilience and diaspora. These are dishes that keep our communities and our histories alive.”  -People’s Kitchen Collective

Based in Oakland, the People’s Kitchen Collective is a group of passionate people that come together to cook delicious meals and gathers their community together to share it. On this evening at Alena Studios in West Oakland, fifty people including myself gathered for a family style meal inspired by Chef Marcus’ Red Rooster Cookbook.

We wined and dined and at the same time we connected to our neighbors.  We met everyone that contributed to the meal including the farmer who provided produce to make the food, the artist that made the pottery that held the fruit that would be broken, and the chefs that spent days creating the meal.

Yucca Fries with Green Chili Salsa
Teff Biscuits with Chicken Liver Butter
Killer Collards
Creamy Coconut Grits
Black Eyed Peas
Panch Phoran Carrot Pickle
Doro Wat
Breaking Night
Spiced Almond Rum Cake

There was something very special about the evening. Chef Marcus was there, but that wasn’t it.  The food was one of the most delicious meals I have ever eaten, but it was more than that.  I felt like part of a community.  I felt heart and soul in every minute of the evening.  It was a movement.  It is the People’s Kitchen Collective.

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