Eat for good karma

Published: 11 November, 2013 09:20 IST | Ruchika Kher |

Food With Benefits, a culinary event-based fundraising platform, will announce their inaugural event today, as some of Mumbai's finest chefs get ready to whip up a scrumptious meal to raise funds for people with personality disorders and mental illness

Gastronomy and philanthropy will come together for a good cause at Food With Benefits’ first fundraising event that aims to raise financial help for Manav Foundation. The latter is known for offering treatment, support and care to persons affected by a mental illness or a personality disorder. The event will be first of a series of unique dining experiences involving Mumbai’s biggest chefs, coming together to raise awareness and funds for NGOs they champion.

Risotto. Representative pics

At the fundraiser, chefs including Pooja Dhingra, head chef at Le 15 - patisserie and Studio 15; Kshama Prabhu, head chef at White Owl; Viraf Patel, head chef and co-owner of Cafe Zoe; Irfan Pabaney, head chef and co-owner of The Sassy Spoon; and Jaydeep Mukherjee, head chef at Indigo Delicatessen — will put together a succulent five-course menu, served with wine.

“I didn’t have to think twice before giving my nod. In one’s career, one does work, and then one does work that one loves. In my case, I am fortunate to be enjoying both — my work as an executive chef as well as being a part of such noble initiatives like Food With Benefits. The latter satiates that part of me that wants to be involved in initiatives that will hopefully make a huge difference,” reasons Kshama Prabhu on what this initiative means to her.

Viraf Patel hums a similar note and calls the event a fantastic initiative. “We are planning to do this every quarter, and then scale it up to once a month,” he declares.

Peanut Butter Cookies

Mumbai is filled with people who like to eat out often, and so Prabhu feels that such an event is a lucrative way to raise money for social causes: “The love for food and fashion is unparalleled here. In a reputed restaurant, not a day / night goes by, where the space is completely empty. If patrons and institutions can make a difference in a small way, we should support it. And, hopefully, patrons will not feel bad about piling on those calories if they know that it’s for a larger cause.”

On Today, 8 pm
At Café Zoe, Lower Parel.
Call 24902065/ 24368984
Cost Rs 3,500
Log on to

What’s on the menu?
>> Amuse Bouche by Chef Viraf Patel: Truffle Mushroom Puff (veg) served with Jacob’s Creek Pinot Noir Sparkling Wine.

>> First course salad by Chef Irfan Pabaney: Roasted Pumpkin with Sweet Spices, Lime, Green Chilli "Thetcha” and a Yoghurt Tahini Dressing, Spearmint (veg).

>> Second course appetiser by Chef Kshama Prabhu: Trio of Crostini — Charred Pear and Chevre, Tomato Tartare and Pepper Relish and Feta (veg) or Kingfish Chimichurri Skewers — Argentinian Sauce of Parsley, Chilli, Garlic and Olive Oil served with Jacob’s Creek Semillon Chardonnay.

>> Third course risotto by Chef Viraf Patel: Risotto of the Forest (veg) or Risotto of the Sea.

>> Palate cleanser by Chef Jaydeep Mukherjee: Strawberry and Orange Sorbet, Ginger Candy (veg).

>> Fourth course mains by Chef Irfan Pabaney (veg) and Chef Jaydeep Mukherjee: Nutty Ricotta Ravioli with Truffle Cream, Toasted Nuts (veg) or Stuffed Chicken, Nutty Mushroom Duxelle, Caramel Potatoes, Wilted Swiss Chard; Bacon jam served on the side, served with Jacob’s Creek Cabarnet Shiraz.

>> Fifth course dessert by Chef Pooja Dhingra: Trio of Dessert — Triple Chocolate Bavarian Cream, Banana Caramel Tart and Pistachio Macaroon / Peanut Butter Cookies (veg).

What An Idea!
“Cooking workshops at various old-age homes / day care centres around the city, will be a perfect way to make people come together, for an interactive session of cooking or baking. Anything to do with food lights up my day. So, I’m sure it will bring a smile on many faces.” — Kshama Prabhu 

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