Belazu Ingredient Company and guest chefs raised £11,544 in aid of Unicef UK and the #CookForSyria campaign on Friday 14th September at Abergavenny’s 20th Food Festival.
The dinner was held in the town’s castle grounds and the six course tasting menu was cooked by renowned guest chefs including Yotam Ottolenghi’s group development chef, Calvin von Niebel; The Modern Pantry’s chef and owner, Anna Hansen; Elly Curshen, author and founding owner of The Pear Cafe in Bristol; pastry chef, author and cookery teacher Henrietta Inman and Belazu’s resident innovation chef and former head chef at Moro, Henry Russell.
The Middle Eastern-themed menu featured Henry’s Syrian Dama Cheese with Argan Oil, Buckwheat Kasha stuffed Aubergines & Flatbread starter; Calvin’s Cauliflower Steak with Tahini, Za’atar Onions & Wild Zahter; Elly’s Poached Salmon Flaked over Giant Couscous with Tahini Yogurt & Pickled Cucumber; Anna’s Chermoula Roast Black Welsh Lamb Leg, Beetroot & Smoked Ricotta Gratin, Tomatillo & Zhoug Relish; and Henrietta’s Raspberry, Rose & Pistachio Tart with Buckwheat Kasha & Almond Pastry, Fig Leaf Olive Oil & Honeyed Labneh Cream dessert; and Tahini, Honey, Halva, Fig & Walnut Dark Chocolates petits fours.
From a minimum amount of £40 for the first sitting and £60 for the second sitting, the 51 guests were asked to pay what they thought the dinner was worth raising a total of £3,848. Belazu Ingredient Company covered all the costs of the dinner and the company’s charity arm, the Belazu Foundation, doubled the total amount raised by the customers donating £7,696 to the cause.
Elly Curshen, author and founding owner of The Pear Cafe in Bristol, says: “What a fabulous start to the weekend at Abergavenny Food Festival! That was, without doubt, the best collab dinner I’ve ever done. The menu, the ace team and everyone left so happy. Thousands raised for the #CookForSyria campaign which makes me so happy and all our hard work worth it. How incredible that we can do something we love and help others at the same time.”
The Belazu Foundation has been raising funds for food-related, educational projects that help disadvantaged individuals at home and abroad since 2003. The #CookForSyria campaign is a global fundraising initiative curated by Clerkenwell Boy and SUITCASE Magazine in partnership with Unicef Next Generation London, a community group that works in aid of Unicef UK.