On 20 June, the London-born charity #CookForSyria will release a second cookbook, called “#BakeForSyria” which has been curated by the baker and cafe-owner, Lily Vanilli. The charity cookbook will bring together Syrian-inspired baking and dessert recipes from some of the world’s most well known bakers and bakeries, including Jamie Oliver, Helen Goh, Yotam Ottolenghi, Dominique Ansel, Imad Alarnab, Honey & Co., and the Modern Pantry.
The cookbook, will donate all profits generated to Unicef’s Children of Syria fund via Next Generation London which is part of the global initiative, which says it aims to bring “together diverse groups of young professionals who are committed to helping transform the lives of the world’s most vulnerable children.”
The recipe book will include traditional sweet and savoury recipes from Syrian families and refugees, as well as what are described as “modern recipes with Syrian-inspired twists” from the leading restaurants, bakeries and chefs who have contributed to it.
From the latter section, for example, are:
- Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh’s tahini brownies
- Lily Vanilli’s pomegranate and tea cakes
- Melissa Hemsley’s almond crust with fig feta tomatoes and tons of herbs
- Nigel Slater and James Thompson’s three cheese za’atar rolls
- Dominique Ansel’s pistachio and rosewater bostock
- Honey & Co’s cream and pistachio baklava with poached rhubarb
- Bill Granger’s boreka with labneh and pomegranate jam
#CookForSyria launched #BakeForSyria in 2017 in collaboration with Lily Vanilli and hosted two hugely successful charity bake-off events that year, taking over both Columbia Road and Old Spitalfields Market. #CookForSyria, now in its second year, is an international fundraising initiative which aims “to preserve and celebrate Syrian culture amid one of the largest humanitarian crises of our time and raise vital funds to help Unicef protect Syrian children.” The supper club, which is supported by dozens of restaurants in London, has now expanded internationally, and has so far raised more than £500,000.
“It’s such a great cause and a way to bring together chefs from all over London and all over the world. To give back by sharing what we create with our community is something that’s very important to me and to our team,” cronut creator, Dominique Ansel said.
About the initiative, Jamie Oliver said: “In a world where it’s often hard to see the wood for the trees, it can be difficult to know which issues and stories to prioritise. The #CookForSyria movement has made it easy for people to get involved and for the public to offer support. It’s an honour to be a part of it.”
Instagram influencer, Clerkenwell Boy, who together with Serena Guen founder of SUITCASE Magazine, London restaurant PR Gemma Bell and baker Lily Vanilli, created the initiative in 2016, said: “The global support for #CookForSyria has been incredible. We hope that the #BakeForSyria recipe book will help raise much needed funds to support children and families affected by conflict and inspire even more people around the world to learn about Syrian cuisine.”