Emergency Episode: Cook For Ukraine
An Opportunity Presented by Zuza Zak
Welcome listeners to a special, unanticipated episode of The Storied Recipe podcast. I had an episode planned for release yesterday, but in light of the horrific current events in Ukraine, my guest preferred to postpone the release. I do thank M. Aimee of Milk of Thy Kindness for her sensitivity during this time. In the meantime, several months ago, I had scheduled an interview with Zuza Zak for this Friday. Zuza was born and raised in Poland until the age of 8 under the oppressive communist regime of the former USSR.
She has written two cookbooks (Polska and Amber & Rye) that double as memoirs and love letters to her country. As things have gone from bad to worse in Ukraine this month, several prominent members of the cooking community (links below) have organized a massive fundraiser titled Bake for Ukraine. They immediately pulled Zuza on board. So rather than following through with the scheduled interview with Zuza tomorrow, instead today we are going to hear about this opportunity to support Ukraine through the Cook for Ukraine movement. We’ll look forward to a full and rich conversation with Zuza soon, but for now, I’m honored to have her on to tell us a little bit about her perspective on the invasion into Ukraine, the Cook For Ukraine Fundraiser, and how we can help. Welcome Zuza and to you, listeners.
- Zuza's experiences growing up in Poland and how they affect her experience and impression of these events
- Reports from the ground in Poland
- How she came on board with #CookForUkraine
- An explanation of #CookForUkraine, who it supports, and how to get involved
- Who to follow for credible information and more action steps
Also listen on:
4 Ways To Support Cook For Ukraine
1. Donate directly at Cook For Ukraine. If you'd like the direct link to cut and paste, it's here:
2. Put the link to donate in your IG bio, stories, FB post, website, etc; and share using the hashtag #CookForUkraine
3. To further involve your community, organize events and invite people to attend and donate. Ideas include supper clubs, bake sales, and workshops. While sharing, remember to hashtag #CookForUkraine
4. Over 50 restaurants in the UK have already joined by agreeing to donate any money over the amount billed (after tips) to Cook For Ukraine. Ask your restaurant. Restaurants wishing to get involved can contact CookForUkraine@gmail.com.
More Details & Contact Info for Cook For Ukraine
For complete details, access the Cook For Ukraine Press Release here.
Organizers of Cook For Ukraine ask that you direct all questions to CookForUkraine@gmail.com
People and Organizations to Follow
1. Zuza Zak is my guest for this episode. She was born and raised in Poland and has just finished her third cookbook. She is helping organize and publicize Cook For Ukraine and offering dumpling workshops to raise money. Follow her on IG at @zuzazakbakes for more information about attending her PierogiesForPeace workshops!!
2. Allisa Timoshkina is the founder of Cook For Ukraine and a Russian food creative and mother living in London.
3. Olia Hercules is a Ukrainian cookbook author living in the UK. Her entire family is in Ukraine and her father and brother are currently fighting in the red zone. Olia is sharing frequent updates on the situation, information to combat lies spread by the Putin regime, and many, many organizations through which you can give aid and support.
4. @clerkenwellboyec1 is a co-founder of #CookForSyria, #CookForUkraine, #CookForBeirut
5. Anisa of @thewonkystove was born in Odessa, Ukraine under the communist regime, and was the guest of last week's episode Siberia, Diamonds, and Clowns. She shares historical context to the recent hostilities and many ways to support Ukraine today.
6. Lydia, my guest for the powerful fan favorite episode of "I Am Piotr's Granddaughter", has Ukrainian children and many ties to Ukraine through close friends and colleagues on the ground. Some are in hiding, some are fighting, the whereabouts of some are unknown at the moment.
6. Larisa Niedle was also born in Odessa and is sharing up to date information and ways to help.
7. Sofia is a food photographer from Lviv. She has successfully fled to Prague, but her husband remains behind to fight. @sofia_popovych_photography
About Unicef's Work in Ukraine
All funds for Cook For Ukraine are being donated directly to Unicef. I always encourage you to find an organization you trust when donating goods or money.
This is an excerpt from UNICEF's Ukraine press release. I am sharing this excerpt Thursday March 3 around noontime. Always check for updated information.
"UNICEF and our partners are working 24 hours a day to meet rapidly escalating humanitarian needs, which include emergency medical services, critical medicines, health supplies and equipment, safe water for drinking and hygiene, and shelter and protection for those displaced from their homes.
"At present, we have 140 people working for UNICEF in Ukraine, and we are sending more to meet needs in-country. Across the east, nine UNICEF-supported child protection mobile teams are reaching children wherever they can with psychosocial care, mental health support, and protection services.
"But the operating environment in Ukraine is extremely complex. Access constraints and rapidly changing front lines make it much more difficult to deliver critical supplies and services.
"The refugee crisis is growing exponentially, increasing humanitarian needs. Half of the people on the move are children. UNICEF is working closely with UNHCR to reach them with protection and assistance in receiving countries.
This Episode's Storied Recipe
Recipe Shared by Lydia Cottrell of Ep 017
A classic, beloved Ukrainian dish, Pierogi (in Ukrainian) or Varynyky (in Russian). Dumplings filled with potatoes, cheese, caramelized onions and topped with more onions, sour cream, and dill.
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More About The Storied Recipe Podcast
The concept of The Storied Recipe is unique - every guest gives me a recipe that represents a cherished memory, custom, or person. I actually make, photograph, and share the recipe. During the interview, I discuss the memories and culture around the recipe, and also my experience (especially my mistakes and questions!) as I tried it. My listeners and I are a community that believes food is a love language unto itself. With every episode, we become better cooks and global citizens, more grateful for the gift of food, and we honor those that loved us through their cooking.
I am also a storytelling photographer celebrating food in extraordinary light
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