A group of local chefs and bartenders are using their talents to raise awareness and give support in the face of racism toward Asian Americans.
Coming in May, Minnesota Rice will launch a series of seven virtual master classes that, according to the website, "teach you how to make some of our favorite dishes and drinks that speak to who we are as Asian Americans."
And the list of participants is impressive: Christina Nguyen of Hai Hai and Hola Arepa, Yia Vang of Union Hmong Kitchen and Vinai, Ann Kim of Young Joni, Pizzeria Lola, Hello Pizza and Sooki & Mimi; John Ng and Lina Goh of Zen Box Izakaya, Ann Ahmed of Lat14 and Lemon Grass, Dustin Nguyen of Tres Leches and Jonathan Janssen of Brother Justus.
Their purpose: "Get to know us, learn our stories, let us share a piece of ourselves with you."
Cost is $100 for the series, which includes written recipes, and 100% of ticket sales go to the Coalition of Asian American Leaders (CAAL). Videos will be released throughout May — Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. The classes are not live, so watch them anytime and as often as you want. For more information or to buy tickets, go to haihaimpls.com/minnesota-rice. Also available: locally based Craftmade Aprons created a limited edition Minnesota Rice apron trimmed with traditional Hmong ribbon. Cost is $90, with $50 going to CAAL.
Why now? After the recent violence against Asians in Atlanta, the group collectively was compelled to speak out. "We felt the need as Asian Americans in the restaurant industry to use our platforms to come together, raise our voices, take up space and bring light to the issue of anti-Asian racism and how it takes a toll on our community, while raising money for an organization [CAAL] that is actively working on this issue," the group said in an online statement.