Combating Hunger, Creating Opportunity

DC Central Kitchen is America's leader in reducing hunger with recycled food, training unemployed adults for culinary careers, serving healthy school meals, and rebuilding urban food systems through social enterprise.
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Monthly Archives: January 2012


Culinary Job Training Class 87 learns international cuisine

, January 26th, 2012

This Wednesday was Heritage Day for Class 87. The students learned international cuisine and career advice from experienced local chefs. A special thanks to these chefs for helping expand our student’s skills. With an expanded palette, Culinary Job Training students will have more job opportunities.

Chef Frida Johnson from the Swedish Embassy prepared Stuffed Swedish Cabbage Rolls.

Chef Mikko Kosonen from the Finish Embassy prepared warm smoked salmon with finish style mushroom salad and dill pickled cucumber.

Chef Enrique Valazquez from The Borinquen Lunch Box prepared a Puerto Rican dish, stuffed green plantains with picadillo.


Chef Maziar Faviar from the Peacock Café prepared Naaz Katoon, a Persian roasted eggplant and pomegranate dip.



Alice & Jose help bring in a record breaking Sips and Suppers

, January 24th, 2012

This past weekend, Alice Waters , José Andrés, and Joan Nathan joined forces to support DC Central Kitchen’s and Martha’s Tables 4th annual Sips and Suppers. The weekend raised $200,000, to be split between the 2 organizations.

400 socially conscious foodies joined us all at the Newseum, where 15 restaurants and 10 artisans practiced their culinary crafts and dished out high-end eats. Local mixologists joined in with delicious cocktails and craft brews.  Together with great Jazz and a beautiful space, they entertained guests that chatted about the issues – Hunger, homelessness, nutrition education, urban farming, healthy school food meals, obesity and the like.

The following day, Sunday Suppers attracted close to 500 guests (20-40 per home) at 20 homes with meals prepared by top chefs from around the country and even the world!

DCCK CEO Mike Curtin: “The generosity of the Restaurant/Chef community is unmatched here in DC. This, coupled with the vendors that donated product, equipment, hotel rooms, etc., not only made these events amazing, but allow us to do what we do every day.”

Jose, Joan Nathan, Mike Curtin



State of the Kitchen 2012

, January 23rd, 2012

On Thursday, January 19th, DC Central Kitchen celebrated its 23rd birthday at the Washington Convention Center with a presentation and Q & A featuring CEO Mike Curtin and President Robert Egger.

It was a rare opportunity for all DC Central Kitchen staff to meet in one place and share a conversation about where the organization is headed.

Below is a copy of that presentation, which highlights our successes and goals for the next year. We also learned about CFoward, a new independent nonprofit advocacy organization created by DCCK founder Robert Egger.

[pdf  http://www.dccentralkitchen.org/files/stateofthekitchen2012.pdf]

Check out this photo of the room packed with DCCK staffers. DC Central Kitchen has grown over the past few years.

All hands on deck at DC Central Kitchen's "State of the Kitchen" gathering



Today at Our Schools: Chef Jamillah’s Banana Bread

, January 20th, 2012

This morning at our seven DC Public Schools, students were treated to Chef Jamillah’s Banana Bread along with local apples from Kilmer’s Fruit Orchard in Inwood, West Virginia, low-fat cheese sticks and milk. Our cooks at the Nutrition Lab baked 50 sheet trays of banana bread from scratch to feed our 1700+ students. As you can see in this shot of Tarina and Shawndella caught in action, they had a pretty good time baking and put lots of love into this recipe’s debut at the schools.



New York Times: The Capital’s Kitchen

, January 15th, 2012

Check out this New York Times Op-Ed featuring DC Central Kitchen. Read More >>



Fresh Start Catering Uses Local Produce for Emergency Family Shelter Meals

, January 13th, 2012

Did you know that in addition to typical catering events such as breakfasts, luncheons and weddings, the Fresh Start Catering team also prepares 550 meals each day for the city’s emergency family shelters?

In August, shortly after moving into the new production space at the Nutrition Lab, Catering began preparing breakfast and lunch for the men, women and children seeking temporary shelter at the city’s emergency shelters. As with all of our meals, these breakfasts and lunches feature fresh, local produce on a regular basis.

Today’s lunch was a grilled chicken caesar salad with fresh croutons, warm breadsticks, melon salad and iced tea. The lettuce used in the salads (pictured above) came from Molehill Gardens in Dayton, Virginia. We currently order 40 cases of local lettuce each week from Molehill Gardens. Half of this lettuce is used by Catering and the rest is used for school meals.