Check back every Friday to learn about our participating chefs, their restaurants, and why they support MANNA!

You’ll find this incredible lineup at The Main Course on Thursday, September 15th at 6pm. Get your tickets before they sell out!

mannapa.org/maincourse 

What is the restaurant/organization you are affiliated with and your title? 

I’m Chef Eli Kulp- Culinary Director at High Street Hospitality and Host of The CHEF Radio & Delicious City Podcasts.

What do you believe is the best bite in Philly?

Right now? Oh gosh that’s hard. The Pastor Negro tacos at Cantina La Martina.

What food automatically puts you in a good mood?

A lot of food! But I would have to say ramen. Specifically the ramen from Terakawa Ramen.

What drew you to MANNA as an organization to get involved with?

I was drawn in because of the depth of work that MANNA does. It’s not just making food for people who need it, which is great, but- MANNA also has a leading edge on understanding that food is medicine and can be an important part of someone’s healing process.

How long have you been involved with MANNA?

I had heard of MANNA before, but I wasn’t fully aware of MANNA’s scope of services and its impact in the research community. The MANNA team and I worked together on a live recording and family style dinner in the spring. It was a perfect match for us to be a platform for more people to find out about what MANNA does, and a great opportunity for MANNA and their supporters to learn about CHEF Radio. CHEF Radio has an impact- whether it be my story or those we tell-that was something wonderful that came out of it [the podcast] early on. I’m happy to do what I can to assist MANNA’s mission.

What role do you believe food plays in the community?

Food plays an enormous role- I don’t know if I can state food’s role highly enough. There is no single impact- there’s an entire ecosystem of local farmers supporting restaurants; those restaurants supporting organizations like MANNA. Then the money raised for MANNA supports countless people all around the area and beyond by providing medically tailored meals. As we know more about the importance of food and health, I think we can all start thinking differently about how we eat.

Why should people attend the Main Course?

If you like a good time, then- it’s probably something you’ll enjoy. Of course there will be great music and food. But, there’s a very serious and impactful mission that you’ll be supporting by attending. MANNA has proven results- and your ticket purchase, donations, and auction bids- they all matter.

Out of all the other participating chefs, whose food/dishes are you most excited to try?

Tova Du Plessis of Essen Bakery. I’m always excited to see what she pulls off because she does amazing pastries, savory, and everything in between. She is a true artisan.

What is the restaurant/organization you are affiliated with and your title?

We’re Kiki & Lani Aranita from Poi Dog!

What do you believe is the best bite in Philly?

The Frizwit [Musi]! But, we may be biased…

What food automatically makes you feel better or puts you in a good mood?

Spam Musubi- we are from Hawaii.

What drew you to MANNA as an organization to get involved with?

MANNA reached out! And everyone we’ve worked with has been so communicative and supportive!

What (or who) is your favorite part of MANNA?

Working with the amazing staff and collaborating with other chefs like Eli Kulp & Jennifer Carroll!

How long have you been involved with MANNA?

I think two years! Our Chili Peppah Water was included in MANNA’s most recent holiday box!

Has MANNA helped you or a loved one in any way?

No, we’re aware that Eli Kulp watched MANNA’s activities from NYC and wished something similar were available to him.

What role do you believe that food plays in the community? 

Food plays many roles- it is one of the markers of culture and makes us feel like we belong when we love the same food and share the same food.

What type of food will you be serving? Anything special for the event?

Hawaii’s local food- not exactly Hawaiian food, but food informed by our family’s long history there.

Why should people attend the Main Course?

Because it’s a chance to see the wide-ranging food culture’s in our city and how they all complement one another.

Out of all the other participating chefs, whose food/dishes are you most excited to try?

We hope Musi is making hummus.

What are you looking forward to most at this year’s event?

Seeing and working alongside our friends!

8/5 Chefs Jen Carroll & Aaron Paik

Jen Carroll

What is the restaurant/organization you are affiliated with and your title?

Founder of Carroll Couture Cuisine, Consulting Chef & Partner at Spice Finch, and Bravo Top Chef All Star!

What do you believe is the best bite in Philly?

Too many to choose from, so I’ll give a shameless plug to my Berbere Beef Jerkey.

What food automatically makes you feel better or puts you in a good mood?

Coffee! A shot of fresh ginger juice and vanilla soft serve with chocolate sprinkles.

What drew you to MANNA as an organization to get involved with?

I truly believe food is medicine. Food / diet directly impacts a person’s health and wellbeing for the better or worse. MANNA is doing the work to advocate, educate and nourish our sickest and most vulnerable members of Philadelphia.

How long have you been involved with MANNA?

Only since this past May but, once I learned about what MANNA is exactly, I’ve been all in. This is my 3rd event in just a few months!

What role do you believe that food plays in the community? 

Food is the common thread and soul of communities. Access to healthy food shouldn’t be unattainable.

Why should people attend the Main Course?

As a non-profit- we need the community’s help and support to continue making an impact in our clients lives. What better way to support than eating and dancing the night away?

Out of all the other participating chefs, whose food/dishes are you most excited to try?

Can I plead the 5th here?!!! We put together an amazing roster of chefs for the evening and if you didn’t know their name before the event, you won’t forget it once you’ve tasted their food.

What are you most looking forward to at this year’s event?

THE FOOD.

Aaron Paik

 

What do you believe is the best bite in Philly?

The cheesesteak bao bun at Bing Bing Dim Sum.

What food automatically makes you feel better or puts you in a good mood?

Anything from the ocean! Philadelphia is the farthest I’ve ever lived (or worked) from an ocean. I was previously in Key West, Kiawah Island, and Charleston.

What role do you believe that food plays in the community?

Food brings people together. Food is cultural, emotional, tied to joyful events.

What type of food will you be serving? Anything special for the event?

Summer Squash Hot Water Cornbread with Squash Blossom Pesto. I think it’s important, especially as a Southern restaurant, to challenge ourselves to create and serve as many plant-based options as possible. I’m excited to serve  traditional low country cuisine in a veggie-forward way.

Why should people attend the Main Course?

The event celebrates Philadelphia’s hospitality industry and a great cause. It’s amazing to see MANNA and the restaurant community support one another in this way and I’m honored to be mentioned as a presenting chef.

Out of all the other participating chefs, whose food/dishes are you most excited to try?

I’m excited to try Omar Tate & Cybille St. Aude- Tate’s [Honeysuckle Provisions] dish. Omar’s understanding of Gullah cuisine is so exciting to me as a (formerly) Southern chef. Combined with Cybille’s vast knowledge of different food cultures- you know their dish is going to be amazing.