Press Release | MoAD’s Diaspora Dinner brings together top Black chefs for a celebration of African foodways hosted by new Chef-in-Residence, Jocelyn Jackson

(San Francisco, CA, May 10, 2023) — The Museum of the African Diaspora’s (MoAD) first Diaspora Dinner curated and hosted by new Chef-in-Residence Jocelyn Jackson brings together top Black culinary talent, including Top Chef Junior finalist Rahanna Bisseret Martinez and Carla Hall, Top Chef All-Star and longtime co host of ABC’s The Chew, for an exceptional evening of international cuisine, lively entertainment, and insightful conversation.

Celebrating the ingredients, cooking techniques, and flavor profiles of the African Diaspora, the Diaspora Dinner features an international, multi-course menu drawn from Martinez’s soon-to-be-released first cookbook, Flavor + Us, a delicious dive into cuisines from all over the world with recipes, tips, tricks, and stories from the 19-year-old college sophomore who has already cooked in some of the world’s finest restaurants, including local standouts Chez Panisse, Tartine Bakery, and Mister Jui’s.

The feast, accompanied by music reflecting the places and cultures highlighted on the menu, is being prepared by renowned chef Sarah Kirnon, known for her Afro-Caribbean fare at the beloved Oakland restaurant Miss Ollie’s and pop-up Holder’s House. As part of the evening’s program, rising star Martinez will chat with Emmy award-winning chef, author, and television host Carla Hall about their televised competitions and the importance of intergenerational collaboration. Guests will receive a signed copy of Flavor + Us, published by 4 Color Books, the new imprint founded by MoAD’s prior Chef-in-Residence Bryant Terry, who will participate in the program as well.

Says Jackson, who started her MoAD residency in January 2023, “MoAD’s Diaspora Dinner is one of the Chef-in-Residence touchstone events because it provides the platform to highlight both the extraordinary passion and delicious creations of a significant and provocative Black chef of our time. This year we have not just one, but five Black chefs at the event all present to support and amplify the beautiful food and stories of Rahanna Bisseret Martinez and her newly published cookbook. Top Chef Carla Hall will be in conversation with Rahanna about her brilliant work. Chef Sarah Kirnon will cook a powerful menu inspired by her book. Chef Bryant Terry is her esteemed Four Color publisher and mentor. And I am delighted to be the Chef-in-Residence to bring all of these cooks together in one room to celebrate the multiplicity of African foodways that our ancestors created to get us free! Diaspora Dinner is our love letter to that taste of freedom.”

The 2023 Diaspora Dinner is MoAD’s fourth since 2015 when founding Chef-in-Residence Bryant Terry launched this series of community dinners prepared by African or African descended chefs celebrating food of the African Diaspora and showcasing local farmers and food artisans. MoAD’s Chef-in-Residence program, the first of its kind in a contemporary art museum, has been seminal in creating space for people of color to give voice to crucial issues around food justice, climate justice, and social justice while nurturing a love of healthy foods, creativity, and community.

Diaspora Dinner 2023 takes place June 7, 2023 from 6-9pm at the new Southeast Community Center, 1550 Evans Avenue, San Francisco. This is a museum members event, but the general public can purchase tickets for $400 each which includes a yearlong membership to MoAD. Information and tickets

MoAD’s Chef-in-Residence program is sponsored by Kaiser Permanente, lead sponsor since the program’s inception in 2015.

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