Brighton food critics swap their pens for pans in aid of Action Against Hunger
Those of you that don’t follow me on Twitter/Instagram may have missed the repartee between myself and some of the other food writers and restaurants in Brighton, surrounding the first Too Many Critics event in Brighton. If you have no idea what that is, here’s the low-down.
In aid of humanitarian organisation Action Against Hunger, I, along with Andy Lynes, Euan McDonald, The Graphic Foodie, Tom Flint, and Rosie Posie have agreed to swap pens for pans and prepare a one-off, six-course menu, to be judged by Brighton’s restaurateurs, chefs and diners (cue my nervous twitchy face).
Semone Bonner and Dan Kenny, co-owners of The Set Restaurant, have curated the whole fundraising event and generously offered up The Set in Regency Square, on Sunday 9th April, as the venue for our dinner. On the day, each of us will cook one-course we’ve designed ourselves and I’ll nervously be kicking off first, with one vegetable and one meat snack at 12:30 pm. This will be followed by a vegetable starter from The Graphic Foodie, a fish course from Rosie Posie, a meat course from Andy Lynes, a pre-dessert from Tom Flint and finally, dessert from Euan McDonald.
30 top chefs and restaurateurs from the Brighton food scene will attend and judge our dishes on their flavour and creativity (time for the tables to be turned – eeek!) Then, at the end of service, one of us will be crowned the overall winner of the cook-off, alongside announcements of second and third places.
After all the food has been served and us, the critics, have breathed a huge sigh of relief, there’ll be a live auction with prizes from local businesses, to raise further money for Action Against Hunger. (N.B. Please do get in touch with me or Bonner if you can offer something for this as we’re still gathering donations). I’ll probably be blind drunk by this point and hopefully celebrating everything not having gone wrong!
Tickets to attend Too Many Critics – Brighton cost £45 per person + Eventbrite’s booking fee (£1.80), with all proceeds from the sales going towards Action Against Hunger’s work to provide malnourished children with healthier futures in nearly 50 countries worldwide. They are almost all gone now, so be quick if you want to book: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/too-many-critics-brighton-tickets-32084449452
In addition to this, The Cocktail Shack will be designing a limited edition charity cocktail a week prior to the event, with all proceeds from this also going to Action Against Hunger. Blackdown Distillery and Ridgeview will also be sponsoring the event and providing welcome drinks for guests.
Too Many Critics has already seen great success in London and Manchester but this is the first time the event has been brought to Brighton and I’m really proud to have been asked to take part amongst such other well-respected foodies.
Why am I supporting Action Against Hunger (and why I ask you to):
I’m in a very privileged position because I don’t have to worry about where my next meal comes from but others aren’t so fortunate. Conflict, acute food shortages, disease and widespread displacement have led to unprecedented levels of child hunger in Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan and Yemen. Famine has recently been declared in parts of Unity state in the northern central part of South Sudan – the first time famine to be declared anywhere in the world since the 2011 crisis in the Horn of Africa. But South Sudan is not the only country facing catastrophe. Children in Somalia, Yemen and Nigeria are at risk of famine too.
The lives of millions of young children are hanging in the balance. Many of them will not reach their fifth birthday. Our immediate priority today is to save lives. But needs are immense and, in many of the affected areas, we have reached a deadly tipping point. Humanitarian efforts must be scaled up immediately to help children survive. We must prevent another catastrophe.
– Michel Grand, Executive Director for Action Against Hunger
In South Sudan, nearly 1 in two people – 4.9 million people – are in urgent need of food assistance whilst an estimated 1 million people in other parts of South Sudan are on the brink of famine.
In Nigeria and the Lake Chad region, an estimated 540,000 young children are at risk of dying from hunger this year. The conflict between security forces and Boko Haram in Nigeria, Niger, Cameroon and Chad has had a devastating impact on the lives of innocent children and their families, leading to widespread displacement, violations of international humanitairan law and an escalating humanitarian crisis.
In Somalia, half of the population is estimated to be in urgent need of humanitarian assistance as they struggle to survive with limited access to health facilities, food and water. Children are bearing the brunt of the situation: an estimated 363,000 malnourished children are in danger unless they receive immediate life-saving treatment.
In Yemen, an estimated 3.2 million people have been internally displaced since the conflict escalated – mainly women and children. 14.1 million Yemenis do not know where their next meal will come from. In Hodeidah governate alone, a shocking one in three children suffer from severe acute malnutrition.
If you can’t make the event I’d really appreciate your support in the form of a donation to Action For Hunger (however big or small – every penny counts).
Visit the JustGiving page here to donate and wish us luck, thank you! x
Action Against Hunger Photo Credits: Lys Arango 2016 and Ben Stevens i-Images 2016