I am Food Chariot founder and head chef, Amanda Grace.
I am a chef de cuisine, whole-foods pastry chef, writer and activist. I am currently based in Los Angeles. In 2016 I relocated from London, where I’ve lived for half my life, but I am originally from Florida. 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 effort to enhance the natural beauty of the produce, is my speciality.
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 that issue 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 have vast knowledge and experience preparing natural, raw, vegan, macrobiotic, Paleo, Ketogenic, whole-food, plant-based (as well as ethically sourced meat- climatarin/ flexitarian), and able to cater to many other healthy dietary requirements.
I am also a creative and experimental baker of gluten-free, naturally sweetened and other free-from desserts, as well as savoury baked goods. My baked goods are made entirely from ingredients which are naturally derived.
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 the delicious 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.
When I was 17, I went to London for a week, met a boy on my first day there, fell in love and ended up staying for half of my life. The food in England has come a long way in the years since, and the culinary scene has recently had an explosion of excitement.
In London, I was the creator of the underground restaurant, Midnight Steakout. Midnight Steakout started life as a small pop-up dinner for friends, and friends of friends, on the roof garden of my flat in Wapping. I cooked simple dinners of steak on the BBQ, vegetables I grew in the garden, served with cakes that I baked. Midnight Steakout quickly snowballed into a series of huge, all-night parties, and themed, sit-down dinners, held in various, secret, industrial spaces, for 172 people.
I am originally from DeLand, Florida, where I also founded the baking business, Gracie Gourmet. Gracie Gourmet became known throughout the land for its unique, bespoke, free-from, sweet & savoury, sustainable, artisanal modern British & American fine foods. Gracie Gourmet produced all manner of cakes and baked goods, all made with whole-food, natural ingredients, organic and locally-sourced wherever possible.
I consider myself extremely fortunate to have had the opportunity to travel extensively throughout Asia, Africa, Australia, Europe, Iceland, North and Central America. The food and cultures of many countries has influenced me and given me an insight into a multitude of fare, not to mention a diverse palate and a taste for the exotic. The cuisines of Japan, Thailand, Italy, Spain, France, England 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, as well as having had the chance to dine at some of the world’s best restaurants. I am happy to now be able to bring my experience to your table.
Get in touch today to discuss the delightful ways in which my team and I can curate a more delicious, nutritious, sustainable, and ultimately, unforgettable dining experience for you!
— Chef Amanda Grace; Founder/Creative Director/Chef de Cuisine, Food Chariot.