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Monday, December 12, 2005

A Menu for Hope II

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Welcome to the second annual A Menu for Hope campaign. As another year of our blogging adventures draws to a close, and as we are preparing to celebrate the holidays with our families and friends, we would like to take advantage of the season to ask you –our kind readers- for a little favor. Last year, we raised a substantial sum to support the victims of the Tsunami in Southeast Asia. This year, a group of us food bloggers would like to ask our readers -that would be you- to help us raise funds to support the victims of the devastating earthquake in the Kashmir region of India and Pakistan.

But what fun would it be just to come begging you for some dough, even if it is for a great cause? So, in order not to turn our otherwise fun blogs into the PBS pledge break bore, we've put together a huge list of cool, fun, and personal gifts -like only we could- to entice you to donate. Each of those gifts is offered as a virtual raffle prize. All you have to do is donate $5 and you will be eligible for the raffle drawing for a gift of your choice.

On our menu this year is everything from a chance to have an afternoon tea with the one and only Clotilde of Chocolate and Zucchini, to a personalized Napa Valley itinerary created by über-wine blogger Alder of Vinography, to a chance to be in the Amateur Gourmet Adventure video with Adam himself, to three very fancy hampers featuring the true artisanal flavors of the San Francisco Bay Area put together by Sam of Becks and Posh, and many, many more.

We are once again using the site FirstGiving to collect the donation. In the interest of transparency, FirstGiving will do all the collection and forward the funds directly to Unicef, our recipient organization. The fund will be earmarked to support the victims of the Kashmir earthquake.

Recipe to participate:
1. Find the gift you would like on our menu.
2. Go to A Menu for Hope II donation page and donate $5 or whatever sum you could spare.
3. Tell us in the comment section of your donation form which gift(s) you would like have. Each $5 donation will give you one chance at winning the prize of your choice. (Yes, if you donate more than $5, you are allowed to specify more than one prize.)
4. That's it!

Our campaign will end on December 23rd, and the winners will be announced and the prizes sent to corresponding winners after January 1st 2006.

(See the entire menu after the jump.)

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Some of our celebrity bloggers are offering personalized gifts to entice their fans to give, and give a lot.

As I mentioned previously, The One, The Only, Clotilde of Chocolate and Zucchini is offering up Haute Pâtisserie, a chance to share an afternoon tea with her at Café de la Mairie in Paris, with patisserie of your choice from Pierre Hermé around the corner.

Meanwhile, that Amateur Gourmet Adam is offering a chance at fame, to participate in an Amateur Gourmet video with The Amateur Gourmet and his Amateur Gourmette Lisa.

Our über-wine blogger Alder of Vinography will create a customized Napa or Sonoma Wine Country Tour Itinerary just for you.

My girt Louisa of Movable Feast, the itinerant chef extraodinaire, offers a personalized Fixer's guide to Paris. Yes, do what Anthony Bourdain did when he was in Paris, have our Louisa create your own personalized guide of Paris for you.

The adorable Heidi, yes, that Heidi, will give you a one-hour food photography lesson (if the winner is local) and a signed copy of her cookbook Cook 1.0. Have you seen her photos? I'd jump for a chance at that lesson for sure.

And, to help sweeten the pot, as though donating a personally autographed copy of his delicious chocolate book was not enough, my other darling David Lebovitz is throwing in an afternoon to savor Berthillon ice cream with him on Ile Saint-Louis. He is buying the ice cream, of course. Let me tell you how hard the man is to track down -even if you are his other girlfriend- so if I were you I'd drop about $100 for that chance!

Flavors of the world
One of the many wonderful things about food blogs is our amazing diversity. Here are a few samples of our diverse flavors that could be yours.

Sam of Becks and Posh asked for donations from the best Bay Area artisanal food purveyors and created three very fancy baskets filled to the brim with a sample of the best that the Bay Area has to offer.
The Hungry Bay Hopper: with certificates for meals at Tres Agaves, Tabla, and Couleur Cafe, Vodka tasting at Hangar One with 3 bottles of liquors, and classes at Tante Marie Cooking School.
The Ferry Building Bonanza, with Purity Organic fruit juice, charcuterie from the Fatted Calf, St Benoit Yoghurts, wine tasting at the Ferry Plaza Wine Merchants, Marin Sun Farms grass fed beef, cheese from Cowgirl Creamery and a dinner at Tres Agaves.
A basket fo food books from the Bay, with Tante Marie Cooking School Book, The French Laundry Cookbook, Chocolate Obsession, and The Zuni Cafe Cookbook.

Fatemeh of Gastronomie offers two gifts, a "ready to cook" Persian dinner "kit". She will measure and prepackage all the ingredients and provide a step-by-step recipe card. If the winner wanted to pay for overnight shipping on ice, she'll even cook it as well. The second gift is her "Persian Pantry" filled with Persian foodstuffs valued at around $50-75. Considering that Persian foods might not be so easy to find in your neck of the woods, this sounds like a mighty tempting gift, no? (Yet another cool item Fatemeh is adding to this kit: "It's a 4.6 gram package of Saffron, direct from Khorasan, hand-carried from Tehran less than a month ago. Just that one item is worth $20, bringing the total value of the Pantry to well over $75!"

Brett of In Praise of Sardines is honoring the culinary tradition of the area we are trying to help by putting together a gourmet basket with ingredients needed to make a traditional Kashmiri meal: a selection of spices (including saffron and difficult to find Kashmiri red chilli) and home-made spice mixtures, a traditional spice box (masala dabba), Basmati rice, Indian tea (for masala chai), some North Indian recipes from his wife's family, and Kashmiri recipes gathered from his own collection of 30 South Asian cookbooks.

Meg and Brett from Too Many Chefs put together a goodie basket of French products to include foie gras, sea salt, snails and more, and also a copy of the chocolate book by our friend David Lebovitz.

Shauna James of Gluten Free Girl offers a Seattle food basket: smoked salmon; organic coffee; Fran's gray salt caramels; and a copy of Tom Douglass' cookbook.

Rachael of Fresh Approach Cooking will give a Jin Patisserie 12 Piece Box. The chocolates include: The de Concubine, Passion fruit, The du Hammum, Mango Kalamansi, Caramel Clove, Cinnamon, Pandan, Chrysanthemum, Lavender, Ginger, Café Rhum and Black Roasted Sesame.

Michèle of Oswego Tea, who just recently moved to Paris, will share her favorite recent find, Mariage Frères Tea.

Keiko of Nordljus is giving a green tea, Matcha, from Japan plus a recipe for one of her own matcha desserts.

Alice of Epicurean Debauchery is offering a Make-Your-Own Sushi Starter Kit with roller mats, a shamoji (a rice scooper), recipes, and some seaweed and wasabi.

Eve, the Chocolate Lady offers up a bottle of vodka infused with Buddha Hand Citron

Megan of I Heart Bacon gives a Casina Rossa Truffle & Salt.

Elise of Simply Recipes gives two jars of her delicious (speaking from experience) homemade apple butter.

Vanessa, she who craves, gives a homemade jar of marmalade

And, in the twist of flavor as only a farm blogger could pull off, our farmgirl Susan is giving a chance to be the honorary owner of the firstborn ewe lamb at her farm next spring.

Kitchen letters and more letters
We are offering up a number of books to add to your cookbook collection.

David Lebovitz will send you a signed copy of his Chocolate Book.

Wena of Mum Mum gives a book on the wonderful Nonya cooking, Foods of my childhood : Penang Nyonya Cooking, by Cecilia Tan

Derrick of Obsession with Food, who occasionally contributes to The Art of Eating is offering a one year subscription to The Art of Eating magazine.

Melissa of the gorgeous Traveler's Lunchbox offers Culinary Artistry by Andrew Dornenburg and Karen Page

Amy of Cooking with Amy with give the Very Maple Syrup cookbook and her very special homemade Maple Nut Granola.

Owen of Tomatilla, the publisher of Digital Dish: Five Seasons of the freshest recipes and writing from food blogs around the world, is providing three copies of the book for this menu.

Stephanie of the Happy Sorceress will give a copy of Giada de Laurentis's new book.

Sweetnicks gives the Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook.

Faith Kramer of Blog Appetit offers a brand new copy of the Bouchon cookbook

Luisa, The Wednesday Chef, offers Anne Willan's Cooked to Perfection.

Clement of the beautiful A La Cuisine! offers The Cook's Book by Jill Norman and three jars of Anton Kozlik's Canadian mustard.

Anne of Anne's Food gives a wonderful book from her homeland of Sweden, Swedish Cakes and Cookies.

Christina, the Medieval mistress of the Thorngrove Table will give Barbara Santich's The Original Mediterranean Cuisine: Medieval Recipes for Today.

Laura the red headed chef of Cucina Testa Rossa offers an autographed Jacques Pepin, Fast Food My Way book.

Kate of the wonderfully Accidental Hedonist provides us with two books, Marcella Hazan's "Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking" and "Marcella Says... : Italian Cooking Wisdom".

Andrew of Spittoon provides a copy of Cook Until Desired Tenderness, a small book by Cleo Papanikolas.

Also, throwing in a bit of suspense for good measure, we have one blogger, Jen of Life Begins at 30, pledging a mysterious gift. Check out her blog today to see what surprising gift she has in store for you. (Mystery gift revealed! Three gorgeous prints from her partner Jason, a professional photographer. You have to go to her blog and check them out. They are just beautiful.)

And last, but not least I should hope, your humble host here on Chez Pim would like to offer up a $200 gift certificate for a meal at Manresa. I don't have to tell you about Manresa, do I? Because if that's the case then you really haven't spent enough time chez moi. I should be so offended!

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There are as always, some fashionably late additions. Here they are.

Barbara at Tigers and Strawberries is giving a copy of the highly sought after Henry Chung’s Hunan Style Chinese Cookbook and an excellent Sichuan cookbook Land of Plenty, by Fucsia Dunlop.

The lovely Judy at Divina Cucina who lives and teaches cooking classes out of her house in Florence, will give us a copy of her very own cookbook, the same one that she gives to her students. It's like having a Tuscan mamma in your house!

No, no, that's not all, Gerald of Foodite is offering a Benriner Kanechi Slicer.

Deb of Here and There is offering a box of her chocolates.

Miss Ginsu of the Hedonista sends a t-shirt and a copy of James Peterson's Essentials of Cooking.

Paige at Chef-Girl is offering two favortie books, The Food Lover’s Trail Guide to Alberta and its sequel, The Food Lover’s Trail Guide to Alberta: volume 2. Two wonderful guides to Alberta that she highly recommends.

Nupur of One Hot Stove has just added to the menu with her Chai Hamper, with everything you'd ever need to make heavenly and authentic Indian Chai.

Sarah of Slash Food has put together a basket full of gourmet goodies from Oregon, including yumminess such as

Kate Hill, who blogs on her French Kitchen Adventures all the way from her house barge in Gascony, offers a basket full of gourmet treasures from her adopted home. Her fabulous basket of Gascony goodness can be mailed to you, wherever you are. Or, if you could come by and pick it up yourself in Southwest France, she would even invite you to sit down for dinner. And would you bring me as well?

VK from My Dhaba is helping out by donating his treasured cast iron Kadai, or fry pan. It's his favorite pan and we are very touched that he would give it up for this good cause.

Silverbrow of Silverbrow on Food offers up three fabulous food books:The River Cottage Meat Book by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, The Handmade Loaf by Dan Lepard,The Book of Jewish Food by Claudia Roden.

Beau of Basic Juice will take a free wine class to you and up to ten of your friends (if you are in or near any US metropolitan areas). How cool is that? Thanks Beau!

Also, another book, this time from Hillary of Blonde Food: Thomas Keller's Bouchon cookbook.

Beatrice from La Tartine Gourmande is offering 3 bars of the excellent New Tree chocolate from Belgium.

Bilbo from Smoregasbord is offering yet another basket of goodies, this time with her mom's cookies and other yummy things from Japan.

Decent Content is putting up way decent gift of $100 gift certificate to spend at CB2, a new offshoot of Crate and Barrel.

Al, the City Hippy, offers a set of fair-trade goodies, with a box of Clipper Organic tea bags, a Packet of Clipper Organic Fairtrade Ground Coffee and a jar of Clipper Organic Hot Chocolate.

Aki and Alexander of Ideas in Food is giving two bottles of Blis maple syrup: one bourbon barrel aged and one infused with Tahitian Vanilla bean.

Charlotte of Love and Cooking is offering homemade truffles, her mom's favorite lemon curd, and even some some myer lemons (if you live in the US.)

And yet more new stuff!

Slice, the definitive blog on all things pizza pie, is throwing in two prizes to entice their readers, and you too, to donate. One is an invitation for two to the Slice Grilled Pizza party at their headquarter in New York, where you could join the Slice editors and shoot the breeze about pizza while eating some delicious fresh-from-the-grill pies. The second is a pizza-making kit: "For those of you who are not in New York City, unable to travel here, or who just find the idea of dining with Slice all too odious, we'll send you a pizza stone, pizza peel, and Peter Reinhart's American Pie, which is chocked full of great pizza recipes and inspiration."

Also joining us this morning is Pascale, whose C'est moi qui l'ai fait is the most popular French language food blog around. She is throwing in a gourmet box of a cool Zyliss peeler and some fancy chocolates from the fabulous chocolatier Michel Cluizel in Paris.

Oh, yes, for those who are interested in Japanese food, there is a second box of Japanese goodies on offer, this time from Obachan. The box contains very hard to find items like dried Yuzu zest and Anko, azuki bean paste powder. Hardcore Japanese food lovers should go put your fiver down right about now!

For a fiver and a bit of luck you might get to shadow Michelin-star chef Stéphane Molé of Les Ormes for the day. Of course you'd have to get yourself over to Paris, but for this kind of chance who wouldn't? This wonderful gift brought to us by Vivian at A Life in Food.

A mixed case of 6 Austrian wines (value at $200) have been added to the campaign by the generosity of the good folks at Winemonger.

Our friend Graham the pieman in Vietnam is offering a copy of Saigon Street Cast DVD and some vietnamese coffee or whatever it is that the post office let him sneak in.

If you are in New York, the Hungry Rose will take you and three friends for a historic walking tour of NY Chinatown.

Another set of lovely gifts contains a book, a box of chocolates, and a surprised kitchen tool from Dreska at Little Fancies.

Also, last but not least is dear Viv of Seattle Bon Vivant, who put together a few of her favorite things, including everything from Christine Ferber jam, purple mustard, Fauchon tea, and two Seattle favorites, a dessert wine and a book from a local chef.

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Well, so how about it? These great gifts are enticing enough for you to give a few dollars for our good cause? What are you waiting for? Donate! Pretty please.

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Photo credit for Menu for Hope logo: Heidi Swanson

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» Menu for Hope II from Too Many Chefs
We are very pleased to announce that Pim has invited us to particicpate in the second Menu for Hope. The idea is very simple and the cause is very good. On Pim's site, you will find a list of participating bloggers, each of whom has donated a gift to ... [Read More]

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We are very pleased to announce that Pim has invited us to particicpate in the second Menu for Hope. The idea is very simple and the cause is very good. On Pim's site, you will find a list of participating bloggers, each of whom has donated a gift to ... [Read More]

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We are very pleased to announce that Pim has invited us to particicpate in the second Menu for Hope. The idea is very simple and the cause is very good. On Pim's site, you will find a list of participating bloggers, each of whom has donated a gift to ... [Read More]

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