Food Fight: Kerry's Keynote Address at the Philly Chef Conference

Food Fight: Kerry's Keynote Address at the Philly Chef Conference

Food Fight: The Power of the Culinary Industry in the Fight for Social Justice

Ladies and gentlemen, I am so thrilled to be with you all today.

There is an old Chinese curse: “May you live in interesting times.” Looking daily at the newspaper and my facebook feed is a reminder of just how interesting these times are. For many of us in this room, these are times that have drawn into focus what we think, what we believe, and what we will fight for.

But while I have the luxury of standing in front of you, trying not to trip in my high heels, the communities that I work with face far more daunting challenges. Being a refugee in the 21st century is knowing that while we have made so many advances in technology, medicine, and culture, we still have so far to go when it comes to the rights of others.

Kerry's Speech at JDS High School Graduation

Kerry's Speech at JDS High School Graduation

Parents, grandparents, educators,  the great class of 2017. I am so honored to be here.

Some professors ominously tell their students “look to the right, look to the left. By the end of the semester one of you will have dropped out.” What I can say today is “look to your left, look to your right, you are sitting next to the people who will walk you down the aisle at your weddings, hold your hands when you need it, and be your lifelong friends.”

One of my favorite JDS memories was in 2004 when the seniors took over the loudspeaker, and proceeded to give away the ending to every book on the English curriculum. Spoiler alert: Romeo and Juliet--dead. Gatsby--dead.  Oh, and don’t even get me started on “Of Mice and Men.”

URGENT: Take Action for Refugees Today

URGENT: Take Action for Refugees Today

Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, the tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!

-Emma Lazarus 

Dear friends,

Today is a dark day for America. A nation which has long been a haven for the persecuted and the disenfranchised is turning its back on its principles of diversity and inclusion.

Launch Party Photos Are Here!

These photos brought back great memories of our launch party just a few weeks ago at Brooklyn FoodWorks. Thank you to everyone who attended, and a special thanks to all those who made the evening possible, including Soom Foods, JARS by Dani, Jessie's Nutty Cups, and VOS Wines

To see all the photos, head over to the album on our Facebook page.

ICYMI: Kerry's speech from our launch event!

ICYMI: Kerry's speech from our launch event!

Thank you all so much for joining us this evening.

Over the last year I have gotten to know a very special person. No, I am not talking about my fabulous husband (thanks Tomer!) or our new neighbors in New York, but rather my new gal pal, Ms. Emma Lazarus.

For those you who have not met Emma, we are experiencing her legacy tonight, in this very room.

Emma Lazarus lived in a world filled with unrest and strife. Born into a wealthy Jewish family in the 1800s, she could have easily let her gender or position in society stop her from engaging in social justice.

PieShell: A New Partner!

We're delighted to announce that Emma’s Torch has been selected to be PieShell's new non-profit partner!

PieShell is a crowdfunding platform for food and beverage startups. Since inception, PieShell has been committed to giving 1% of their proceeds to a non-profit. Given our shared values of helping others help themselves in the food and beverage world, we couldn’t be happier to be working with the PieShell team!

While there are numerous wonderful food and beverage charitable organizations supporting those in need, Kerry is why we chose Emma’s Torch as our nonprofit partner. Her infectious passion to help people is what sets her and Emma’s Torch apart. We couldn’t be more excited to be part of it, and to make a difference in the culinary space.
— Cheryl Clements, PieShell Founder

See more about our partnership on PieShell's blog.

We're Having a Party!

We're delighted to announce a special party on December 18. This will be a celebration of our first cohort of students and it will also be a launch party for Emma's Torch. 

Please join us at Brooklyn FoodWorks from 6-8 pm. There, you'll taste appetizers and desserts prepared by our students. You'll also get to know them: where they came from, what they do now, and what they dream of doing tomorrow. 

We have limited capacity, so please get your tickets today! All proceeds from the event support refugee empowerment programs. 

Tibetan Thupka

Kelsang Dolma 

Name is Kelsang Dolma. I was born in Nepal but my heritage is Tibetan. My family and I now live in New York. This recipe was from my mother. We make this soup when it's cold outside. We make it a lot and drink it with all the family together.


  • 1 bunch of spinach, bok choy, or any other greens
  • 1 radish
  • 1 onion
  • Garlic and ginger, to taste
  • Mutton (optional)
  • Garam masala, cumin, and turmeric, to taste
  • Dumpling dough, cut into small pieces (either flat and very thin pieces or 1 by 2 inch cubes)



  • Boil the meat, if using, in the water with onion, garlic, ginger, and salt, until meat is thoroughly cooked.
  • Put the small pieces of dough in the soup for 5 minutes.
  • Cut radish into thin pieces, two inches long
  • Put the radish into the soup and cook for two minutes
  • Add spinach and bok choy, and cook for five minutes.

A Souvenir from New York City

By Liana Grey

I asked my grandmother, Helene, to share a food memory about Brazil, where she lived for nearly 50 years. The story she told began thousands of miles away in Manhattan. Helene grew up on the Lower East Side, in a brick apartment complex on Grand Street. Her father owned a rubber cement shop on Bleecker Street, and her mother ran a yeshiva for girls. Helene had five siblings, two of whom became prominent rabbis.

After marrying my grandfather in the late 1940s, Helene left behind her life on the Lower East Side and moved to Brazil. She and my grandfather had some family there, and my grandfather had the opportunity to open a textile business in Sao Paulo. My grandmother brought along two prized kitchen possessions from New York: a KitchenAid mixer and a little red and white checkered cookbook that came along with the machine. For every nearly every special occasion over the next few decades - namely my mom and her sisters’ birthday parties - Helene faithfully prepared her favorite recipe from the KitchenAid cookbook: sponge cake layered with whipped cream and topped with fresh strawberries. My grandmother, who never considered herself an expert baker, loved the cookbook’s precise instructions. “I followed the exact recipe,” my grandmother told me. “It came out fantastic if you followed it exactly.”


Angel Food Cake


From KitchenAid, also on


  • 1 1⁄4  cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1⁄2 cups sugar, divided
  • 1 1⁄2  cups egg whites (about 12 to 15 egg whites)
  • 1 1⁄2 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1⁄2 teaspoons vanilla or 1⁄2 teaspoon almond extract


Mix flour and 1/2 cup sugar in small bowl. Set aside. Place egg whites in mixer bowl. Attach bowl and wire whip to mixer. Gradually turn to speed 6 and whip 30 to 60 seconds, or until egg whites are frothy

Add cream of tartar, salt, and vanilla. Turn to speed 8 and whip 2 to 2 1/2 minutes, or until whites are almost stiff but not dry. Turn to speed 2. Gradually add remaining 1 cup sugar and mix about 1 minute. Stop and scrape bowl. Remove bowl from mixer. Spoon flour-sugar mixture, one-fourth at a time, over egg whites. Fold in gently with spatula, just until blended.  

Pour batter into ungreased 10-inch tube pan. With knife, gently cut through batter to remove large air bubbles. Bake at 375 for 35 minutes, or until crust is golden brown and cracks are very dry. Immediately invert cake onto funnel or soft drink bottle. Cool completely. Remove from pan.