I am Food Chariot founder, Amanda Grace.
I am a primarily plant-based chef, whole-foods pastry chef, writer and activist. I am currently based in Los Angeles. I was born in Florida and in 2016 I relocated from London, where I’ve lived for the most recent half of my life. I am currently working towards completing an MA in Digital Journalism from Goldsmiths College, University of London.
I am passionate about food, food politics, food justice, sustainability, reducing food waste, health and nutrition, overcoming food poverty, permaculture, urban farming, farm-to-table, agricultural diversification, and the overall raising of awareness of the issues surrounding food. The ultimate dream is the creation of a food system where everyone has access to fresh, nutritious, delicious and sustainable food.
I love to cook and bake healthy food in the most decadent way possible, with an emphasis on fresh, local, organic, ethically-sourced and sustainable produce. I delight in making healthy food taste scrumptious. Good produce, prepared simply, in an act of reverence and effort to enhance the natural beauty of the produce in order to stimulate the senses as well as enhanced vitality, is my speciality. For more information, please see Chef Amanda Grace.
With over 100 farmers market’s happening year-round, in Los Angeles, I have found my culinary, spiritual home. While some people here eat extremely well, many others go hungry or eat substandardly. This is all while we waste almost half of all food grown in the US. I believe that this can be resolved by overcoming greed, showing compassion for our fellow human beings, as well as regaining a lost reverence for the food that we grow, cook and eat.
I did not set out to become a chef, it was a passion that grew into a vocation. I discovered a love for food at a young age, through an enthusiasm for travel and discovering diverse cultures, and at an even younger age, through a strong connection to nature stimulated by the meadows where I spent my childhood, as well as the homegrown produce in my parent’s kitchen garden. I fondly recall long, summer days, sat eating fruit in mulberry and Florida citrus trees.
When I was 16, I had the chance to live on an organic raspberry farm in Northern California, which helped turn me on to healthy living. The woman who owns the farm, an incredible botanist, midwife, farmer, and all around renaissance woman, was instrumental in introducing me to a whole-foods, plant-based diet, and true, farm-to-table eating.
I consider myself extremely fortunate to have had the opportunity to travel extensively throughout Asia, Africa, Australia, Europe, Iceland, North and Central America. The foods and cultures of many countries have influenced me and given me an insight into a multitude of fare, not to mention a diverse palate and a passion for spices and a taste for the exotic. The cuisines of Japan, Thailand, Italy, Spain, North Africa, France, England, Turkey, China, Vietnam, and California being among some of my favourites. I am incredibly grateful to have had this opportunity, as I feel my palate has been greatly enriched by my travels and experiencing first hand the food of these cultures.
I have also been exposed to severe food poverty and had my eyes opened by witnessing how much less food is generally wasted in countries which suffer from such severe poverty. While there are also many people experiencing food poverty in the U.S., almost 40% of the food we grow here is thrown away. This has serious repercussions, not just to the staggering 1 in 6 Americans who experience food insecurity, but even more alarmingly, to the impact that the 8% global contribution food waste has on greenhouse gas emissions. I believe it was food waste pioneer Tristram Stuart who first said it, but it has now become a widely quoted statistic. ‘If food waste were a country, it would come in third after the United States and China in terms of impact on global warming.’
It is in all of our best interests to revitalise our ailing food system. Join me in my mission to help create a more equitable and sustainable food system for all.
— Chef Amanda Grace; Founder/Creative Director/Chef de Cuisine, Food Chariot.