A celebration of Syrian cuisine in aid of children affected by one of the world’s largest humanitarian crises
To support UNICEF’s lifesaving work for children in Syria, Australia’s top chefs are coming together this June to create a special dinner at Three Blue Ducks Rosebery, Sydney. Hosted by UNICEF Australia Ambassador, Adam Liaw, the dinner, held on Monday 18 June, is part of a month-long, nationwide fundraising initiative, #CookForSyria, in aid of UNICEF Australia’s Syria Crisis Appeal for Children.
Over 20 of the country’s top kitchen talent are collaborating to create an unforgettable night, serving signature dishes with a Syrian inspired twist. These chefs include Kylie Kwong (Billy Kwong), Carol & Sharon Salloum (Almond Bar), Jordan Toft (Bert’s), Mark LaBrooy & Andy Allen (Three Blue Ducks), Luke Powell (LPs Quality Meats), Palisa Anderson (Chat Thai), Josh & Julie Niland (Saint Peter), Matt Stone & Jo Barrett (Oakridge Wines, VIC), Duncan Welgemoed & Imogen Czulowski (Africola, SA), Paul Carmichael (Momofuku Seiōbo), Lennox Hastie (Firedoor), James Viles (Biota), Monty Koludrovic (Icebergs & The Dolphin Dining Room), Jacqui Challinor (NOMAD), Andy Bowdy (Saga) and Gregory Llewellyn (Hartsyard).
The chefs will put a Syrian stamp on one of their signature dishes, creating a memorable and fun family-style feast. Palisa Anderson will serve up pork sausages with a Zoug inspired Nahm prik chilli relish, Kylie Kwong will bring back her crispy organic saltbush cakes with Syrian spices, and Josh and Julie Niland will turn eel on its head with a smoked eel moutabbal & beetroot jam donut.
Adam Liaw travelled to Jordan in February to meet Syrian children and their families living in Za’atari Refugee Camp,15 km from the Syrian border. “The magnitude of what faces the displaced people of Syria has to be seen to be believed. Tents and temporary homes stretch as far as the eye can see, housing hundreds of thousands of people who have been through the unimaginable horrors of war”, says Adam.
“One of the things that gives the residents of the camps hope of one day returning to their old life is going through the everyday routine of normal living. Food is a huge part of that, and the camps are filled with shops that sell breads, sweets, shawarma, and groceries. UNICEF’s work in Jordan provides help and hope to Syrian refugees and funds raised as part of this campaign are vital for continuing this effort.”
The cause is close to Almond Bar’s Salloum sisters’ hearts; “We believe that if you are capable of making the smallest effort in life to assist another human being in need then you should. Syria has needed the assistance of the world around it for just over seven years now and such an event is the perfect way to get involved in fulfilling that need. Hospitality is the essence of Middle Eastern culture, it is a way of life, an innate quality that is shaped and nourished by our families”.
The #CookForSyria campaign aims to encourage everyone from top chefs and restaurants, to people at home, to cook and raise money to help children affected by the conflict in Syria. The global movement has to date raised more than AUD $1 million and counting.
Throughout June restaurateurs, chefs, bakers and café owners from around the country are also invited to take part in #CookForSyria by putting a Syrian inspired twist on one of their favourite signature dishes (or by creating a new dish) and donating $5 from each sale of the dish. Syrian cuisine is one of the oldest in the world and reflects the country’s rich cultural heritage with influences from the Middle East and beyond.
For registration, please visit: http://cookforsyria.com/au/
The dinner will kick off at 6.30pm on Monday 18 June, at Three Blue Ducks in Rosebery.
Tickets are $280/ person (plus booking fee) and will include canapés, cocktails on arrival, a shared Syrian-inspired feast and wines.