Chef Kevin Nashan talks about his commitment to ending childhood hunger.
Chefs are the backbone of so much of the work we do. Whether it’s culinary events that raise critical funds, our nutrition education programs that teach low-income families how to shop and eat on a budget, or even lobbying on Capitol Hill on behalf of hungry kids, chefs are some of our most dedicated volunteers and advocates.
As part of an ongoing interview series that features these chef advocates, we are proud to introduce you to Chef Kevin Nashan of Sidney Street Café in St. Louis. Earlier this summer, Kevin Nashan traveled to Capitol Hill to advocate in support of SNAP benefits and recently held his first No Kid Hungry Dinner in St. Louis.
How did you originally become involved with Share Our Strength?
I became involved with Share Our Strength a few years ago, when my buddy Gerard Craft asked me to cook at a No Kid Hungry dinner at his restaurant Brasserie. Also, my good friends at Operation Food Search here in St. Louis host Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters classes.
You recently held a No Kid Hungry dinner at Sidney Street Café. What inspired you to host a No Kid Hungry dinner?
Childhood hunger is in all of our backyards. Being able to bring the dinner to St. Louis and spotlight the travesty was a simple no brainer.
Did you have a favorite moment of the evening?
Yep — when we realized we doubled our original fundraising goal!
What’s the culinary experience like at Sidney Street Café?
Rustic, elegant, and innovative!
What’s the best meal you’ve had in recent memory?
When I was in DC for Share Our Strength’s Conference of Leaders, I had the chance to try Little Serow. It was great!
What chefs do you admire?
Too many to mention — but I’d say Alex Lee, Roland Liccioni, Jamie Shannon, and Daniel Boloud are my role models both in and out of the kitchen.
What advice would you give on how to prepare healthy, low-cost meals at home?
Keep it simple, seasonal, and fun!
What ingredients will we always find in your kitchen?
You’ll always find salt, extra virgin olive oil, chipotle Tabasco, and hatch chile in my kitchen.
Why is ending childhood hunger important?
It’s pretty simple — without healthy kids, we have no future!