Show 340, September 7, 2019: Chef Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen and Brian Huskey of Tackle Box

Bill Bracken of Brackens KitchenBracken’s Kitchen, a nonprofit dedicated to combating food insecurity in Southern California is committed to recovery, repurposing and restoring both food and lives through food rescue, culinary training, and community feeding program, will host its 2nd annual fundraiser to support healthy meals served to the impoverished in Orange County.

The Hungry Games 2.0” culinary competition will bring top local chefs together for an evening of food and wine in a live kitchen setting.” Guests will be able to taste small bites and cast their votes, with the Hungry Games winner announced over dessert. There will be a small silent auction.

Brian Huskey of Tackle BoxFounder Chef Bill Bracken of Bracken’s Kitchen joined by first time participant Chef Brian Huskey of Tackle Box – Local Grub Shack in Costa Mesa and Corona del Mar stirs the pot for us with all the enticing details.

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Show 318, April 6, 2019: Patti Larson, Executive Director, Food Finders

Food Finders Long BeachThis month Long Beach-based Food Finders is celebrating 30 years of rescuing food and eliminating food insecurity in Southern California.

With thirteen employees and 300 volunteers, Food Finders rescues perfectly edible, unserved food from restaurants, caterers, grocery stores, bakeries, produce markets and other food vendors and delivers it within hours to nearby agencies such as shelters, senior centers, Boys & Girls Clubs, etc., that service the food insecure throughout Southern California. This rescue effort also reduces the amount of CO2 gasses leaked into the atmosphere by keeping discarded food out of the landfills.

A personal effort and passion that began at founder Arlene Mercer’s Seal Beach kitchen table 30 years ago, Food Finders has grown into an organization that has rescued 150 million pounds of food, equating to 125 million meals, since April, 1989.

“We’re proud of our efforts to reduce hunger and food waste over the last 30 years,” said Patti Larson, who succeeded Mercer as executive director of Food Finders in 2011 when Mercer retired. “But we still have a ways to go, considering 1 in 8 in Californians remain food insecure and yet the average family of four throws out $1,500 worth of perfectly good food each year.”

Food Finders 30th Anniversary fundraising goal is to raise $30,000 in financial donations during the month of April. For more information and how to donate, visit their website.

Executive Director Patti Larson is our guest to better explain the need.

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Show 263, March 3, 2018: The Sky Room’s Coquelicot Wines Benefit for Food Finders

Jonathan RosensonThe Sky Room, an iconic restaurant in downtown Long Beach, will be hosting an afternoon wine tasting fundraising event featuring their signature Coquelicot wines, on Saturday, March 10th from 1-3pm. Organized by Dine LBC, funds raised will benefit Food Finders food rescue program.

For this unique social event, guests will be invited to sample up to twenty Coquelicot wines while enjoying light appetizers provided by The Sky Room. The Sky Room is located at 40 S.Locust Avenue in downtown Long Beach.

Tickets are $35 per guest and are available for purchase right here. All proceeds from ticket sales will be donated to Food Finders to support their ongoing food rescue program.

“The team at The Sky Room has always been supportive of the important work that Food Finders does in working to eliminate food insecurity in Long Beach and beyond,” said Jonathan Rosenson, proprietor and sommelier of The Sky Room, “We’re excited to have this chance to invite guests to spend a fun afternoon tasting our Coquelicot wines and support Food Finders at the same time.”

Wines by the bottle will also be available for sale for guests to take home during the event, with all proceeds also going to Food Finders.

Jonathan uncorks the needed 411 for us.

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Show 159, February 13, 2016: Executive Chef Bill Bracken, Bracken’s Kitchen

Bill BrackenBill Bracken is a well-known executive chef who traded in luxury hotels (The Peninsula Beverly Hills and Island Hotel, Newport Beach) for Betsy, a well-worn food truck with a lot of miles. He’s now feeding people in need in Orange County. Chef Bill shares his new mission with us. It’s quite a career change.

“I can already tell that 2016 will be a great one. More than ever, Bracken’s Kitchen is charging full speed ahead to combat food insecurity and taking the strides to be one of the most effective hunger-focused organizations in Orange County.”

“With their help and yours, we can continue to extend our reach to help more individuals and families in need and to not be just a hand out but truly be a hand up.”

There are many ways for the listener to support the good work of Bracken’s Kitchen. Cash donations are always appreciated. Also there are meaningful volunteer opportunities available.

Sign-up for the informative Bracken’s Kitchen’s Newsletter via the Website. It tells the story…

 

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Show 159, February 13, 2016: Executive Chef Bill Bracken, Bracken’s Kitchen Continues…

Bill Bracken“In addition to expanding our team, we are building what we call our “Trio of Services”: our Food Truck Feeding Program (which we are currently executing), a Rescued Food Program and a Culinary Internship Program that will move us forward as an organization and business. With these two new platforms, we aim to affect change in a person’s life by offering job training and work opportunities in the culinary field which will be of huge support to our restaurant and hospitality partners.”

“2015 marked the end of our first year of feeding and we are incredibly grateful for not only all of the hard work, support and contributions that were made, but also for the learning lessons, challenges and obstacles that we had to overcome to achieve our goals.”

Some of our accomplishments:

  • Moved into our fully equipped prep kitchen to support our Food Truck Feeding Program
  • Over 5,000 hot and nutritious meals were served to those experiencing food insecurity in Orange County, CA in just nine months.
  • The average cost of our high quality, freshly prepared dinner is about $0.50 – almost matching average meal cost provided by food banks across America.
  • The Illumination Foundation and Bracken’s Kitchen secured Tuesday night feedings at the Ross Street House in Santa Ana, catering to children who attend their after school program and their families.
  • Served approximately 3000 meals to our homeless military veterans at Stand Down Orange County in October
  • Launched trial runs for our Chef’s To End Hunger rescued food program

Sign-up for the informative Bracken’s Kitchen’s Newsletter via the Website. It tells the story…

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