Hey China, Wanna Do Lunch?

Culinary DiplomacyWe live in a complicated world. The globalization of information has exploded in recent years and technology seems to be in danger of outpacing understanding. Suddenly, we have e-neighbors from cultures about which we may know little and whose rituals and traditions we’ve never experienced and vice versa. How will we find common ground across so broad a map of humanity? Well, we all eat, or hope to eat, right?

This month, September 2012, U.S. Secretary of State Hilary Clinton announcedthat the U.S. State Department has joined forces with the James Beard Foundation to create the “Diplomatic Culinary Partnership.”

Over 80 chefs have been assembled to represent the “American Chef Corps.” From “Iron Chef” Masaharu Morimoto to “Ace of Cakes” Duff Goldman, from New Orleans Chef Susan Spicer to Harlem, NY Chef Marcus Sameulsson (who has already hosted his first State Chef” event, former “Top Chef contestants, Food Network stars, plus some less televised culinary stars will be preparing meals and presentations for international dignitaries and visitors, engaging in cultural exchanges abroad, and advising the State Department about our and others’ diverse culinary traditions.

What better way to get to know your neighbors than to share a meal? Sometimes, it is the simplest, most basic forms of sharing that are the most profound. And, imagine the “stuff” that a great dessert could get people to do!!!

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