Chef Appreciation Week with Chef Awo Amenumey
In honor of Chef Appreciation Week, we will be honoring some of our favorite food waste warriors, our chefs. Since Stop Food Waste Day's inception, chefs have been the backbone of our movement, and their voice and skill have helped elevate our cause. We thank you this week and every week for making withstanding change in our food system. And as many of you know, you will never meet a chef that wants to waste food. Follow along on our account all week for highlights and thoughts from some of our favorite Food Waste Warriors.
The next chef we are honoring is Chef Awo Amenumey. Chef Awo is a Traveling Sous Chef and D&I Ambassador COH DIAC for Morrison Healthcare. Check out our interview below!
What inspired you to become a chef?
My love for meeting the needs of people through hosting and feeding them.
What is your all-time favorite meal, and why?
My all-time favorite meal I would say is Goat-meat Pepper Soup with Fufu (Fufu is a Ghanaian dish made of pounded cassava and plantains into a dumpling-like ball and Goat pepper soup is a flavorful, spicy tomato broth with chucks of seasoned goat meat).
Growing up in a large family house with grandma and grandpa to uncles, aunties, and cousins I have lots of fond memories of my childhood where we would all gather almost every night for dinner and grandma shared stories of the “good old days”. And the days we had Fufu which was usually Saturdays (because of its labor intensiveness) was my ultimate favorite, I would devour my share quite quickly and my mum was always amazed at how anytime we had Fufu, I finished every bit.
Why does reducing food waste matter to you?
Reducing food waste matters to me because as a society we have so many individuals going to bed hungry with nothing to eat and yet we have over a third of our foods going into the trash and landfills contributing to climate change daily and it breaks my heart to see that. So, by being mindful of our buying and consumption practices, we can do a little every day to gradually win at reducing food waste
What are your favorite tips/tricks to reduce food waste?
On my birthday this year, a dear friend got me a portable composter, so I have started composting at home and even though I have not started gardening yet, ha-ha! I plan to give the compost to my friends who have gardens near me.
An oldie but certainly a goody…I save my vegetable scraps in the freezer for homemade stocks and if I have something that might be going out of date, I try to make desserts with it. For instance, a few weeks ago, I bought goat cheese from a local farmer and forgot to use them, and they were almost pass their “use by” date so I made Goat Cheese Cookies…delicious!
Another tip I like and use a lot is buying my fruits and vegetables more frequently (every few days) and if I do buy in bulk, I freeze them and use in smoothies for my husband and kids which they love.
If you could give your past self advice, what would you say?
I would say stay true to yourself and give yourself some grace.
Chef Awo is a Traveling Sous Chef and D&I Ambassador COH DIAC for Morrison Healthcare.