Food, food culture, food as culture and the cultures that grow our food

Lucky Mi Fortune Cooking

June 19, 2008

Sk8r enjoys Lucky Mi Fortune Cooking -coconut cassava bonbons and new herring - Debra Solomon,
Local sk8r boi enjoys the coconut cassava bonbon with newly aromatic herring.

In the past year I’ve been working with community food entrepreneurs; cooking studios, restaurants, small food stores, and local vegetable growers strengthening networks to innovate snacks that could be sold locally. Not big-business food, just extremely yummy and secretly healthy street food snacks made from what’s already going on; a snack-platform, by the folks, for the folks.

Lucky Mi Fortune Cooking - watermelon smoothy is 100% watermelon - Debra Solomon,
Super-use is everything but the squeal… watermelon juice and pickled watermelon rind; refreshing and we assume rejuvenating.

Together with my partners Imagine IC in Amsterdam Z.O., Kosmopolis Rotterdam, and Vakmanstad/Skill City (Rotterdam), I initiated Lucky Mi Fortune Cooking, a mobile snack platform to research and focus on food culture and identity in the diverse Dutch neighbourhoods. An underlying notion of Fortune Cooking is super-use; super use of the food flows, available expertise, facilities and networks, in order to nurture informal and micro-economies. In just two weeks we’ll launch this dimsumptuously experimental snack brand at the Amsterdam Zuidoost Summer Festival. The images in this entry are from our try-out last weekend at the Rolling Kitchens event in Amsterdam’s Westerpark, but starting July 5th, we’ll have an actual snack wagon - designed by bona fide architects. (More on that in a later entry.)

Lucky Mi Fortune Cooking - veggie masala polenta is Groentoe Akansa -Debra Solomon,
Groentoe Akansa is a leafy green masala polenta wrapped in a leaf and served as an offering.

Lucky Mi snacks for this summer are being innovated in collaboration with Mavis Hofwijk from Surinaams Buffet, a catering and cooking studio in Zuidoost. Mavis is something of a gastronomic superstar and is without a doubt the go-to-gal when folks like the Dutch Queen or Amsterdam’s mayor Job Cohen (yes, he’s a bro) get a hunkering for Surinamese cuisine. I am honoured to be able to work with her and her team, which includes her culi-knowledgeable daughter Candice.

Lucky Mi Fortune Cooking - veggie masala polenta is Groentoe Akansa -Debra Solomon,
An unrolled groentoe akansa, pronounced grewn too ah kahn sah.

Of course the carbon footprint part of your brain is wondering where all this tropical food is coming from, and I am happy to report that the leafy greens that Mavis uses in the Lucky Mi Fortune Cooking snacks come straight from the farms of Mario Balhari, just a bike ride away in nearby Amstelveen. Tropilocal! Although Mario is one of those cosmopolitan farmers who works with collectives in Cuba and Surinam, he also has his own fields right here in the Heimatt where he grows the delicious am soi, baji, and klaroen leafy greens. Together we’re working on developing a tropilocal salad box for the July 5th opening.

Lucky Mi Fortune Cooking - coconut cassava bonbon with new herring -Debra Solomon,
Buy some coconut cassava bonbon with newly aromatic herring and watermelon pickle, and get a free fork!

Lucky Mi Fortune Cooking is a mobile snack restaurant and culinary embassy. In-situ snack innovation and collective entrepreneurship is the result of the collaboration between myself and brilliant neighbourhood food entrepreneurs from Amsterdam Zuidoost and in Rotterdam’s Afrikaanderbuurt. Lucky Mi is 100% food from the ‘hood and a purely dimsumptuous snackology.

Heads up, our menu-not-so-fixe changes frequently and at our slightest whim! Changes will be posted here and at our soon to be announced website.

debra at 22:33 | | post to

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