The Knead to Give Food & Music Festival Takes Over Grand Central Market

The Knead to Give Food and Music Festival took over Los Angeles’s Grand Central Market on Sunday, August 14. c The evening brought together the cuisines and cultures of LA and the passionate people who attended to keep LA Green and support five local charities including Food ForwardHoneyLoveMuir Ranch PasadenaHollywood Orchard, and FoLAR. In case you missed it, here are a few highlights:


A real stand out was the carmelized beets and avocado over crispy rice by Chef Rahul Khopkhar. Yes, I had more than just one. Rahul was kind enough to share the recipe for the beets and the avocado topping:

Steam the beets for an hour, peel, then roast at 350 degrees for 32 minutes. (It might take longer with a traditional home oven).
Season the beets with vegan mayo, Siracha, scallions, sesame seeds, sesame oil, chile oil and salt.
Avocado mousse – Yuzu, salt, garnish with chili threads.


Chef Khopkhar created and opened Ramen Hood, which you can try any time you’re in Grand Central. Ramen Hood is LA’s very first all vegan Ramen-ya.


Bar Moruno’s anchovy lolly pops were delicious: anchovy wrapped olives, roasted red pepper, and garlic on a stick.


I love a seaweed salad, also from Knead & Co.


The baked ziti, also from Knead and Co., was decadent and perfect for sharing (more room for more plates!).


Bombo served beer and wine on tap. I had a lovely summer glass of Sainsbury rosé of pinot noir followed by a refreshing Bootleggers old world Hefeweizen. 


Everyone was raving about this pork meatball from Knead & Co., but I like to stick to fish and vegetables! Still, it looked amazing.


The scallop ceviche from Knead & Co. was most refreshing on this hot summer night.


The simplest of salads really hit the spot. Tutti Frutti farmer’s market heirloom tomatoes with basil and balsamic vinaigrette. Knead & Co. Pasta Bar is open in Grand Central Market daily. Try it!


DTLA Cheese Company offered a beautiful assortment of cheeses. I was also able to sample vegan cheese made from cashews by Miyoko’s Creamery. Herbes de provence, black ash, garlic herb, double creme chive, garlic herb, sun dried tomato and garlic. Yum!


I cooled down with dessert by Cool Haus: Ice Cream sammie: Chocolate cookie + Cannoli ice cream.


But one of the greatest aspects of the night was being in Grand Central Market, downtown’s longtime open air standard for fresh produce and now a trendy hotspot for LA’s burgeoning fast casual restaurant scene


There was a silent and live raffle with spectacular prizes! Some of the more unusual offerings: a Pan Am fine dining experience, Flight lessons, a ride to Palm Springs in a Tesla, a tour of the Playboy Mansion, and an African Safari.


It was also a great treat to learn more about these wonderful charities. $0.90 cents to every dollar earned went to these local green groups.


Music included Winslet and Chef Bruce Kalman’s band, Foie Grock.


Celebrity guests I spotted were longtime environmental activist Ed Begley Jr., celebrity chefs Bruce Kalman and Marie Petulla, actor Bill Pullman and lots of stars from TNT’s Murder in the First.


And I just loved the simple wild flower arrangements and the fresh from the farmer’s market tomatoes scattered on the tables.


It was amazing night to try these special and unique LA restaurants in the market and participate in supporting a good cause. Thanks for inviting us, Knead & Co.!


On the way out, I caught a glimpse of the now non-operational Angels Flight cars perched on top of Bunker Hill. I hope they are back in service soon. I walked to Pershing Square and caught the Red Line metro back home to Hollywood.

Find out more about the charities below:


Food Forward- Food Forward rescues fresh local produce that would otherwise go to waste, connecting this abundance with people in need, and inspiring others to do the same.

HoneyLove – HoneyLove is a Los Angeles based non-profit conservation organization with a mission to protect the honeybees by educating our communities and inspiring new urban beekeepers.

Muir Ranch Pasadena – In 2011, a dedicated team of volunteer teachers and students began converting 1.5 acres of the John Muir High School campus into an urban farm. Muir Ranch grows a variety of flowers, vegetables and fruit that are included in weekly CSA boxes as well as school cafeteria lunches. Students can complete community service or internship graduation requirements by enrolling in classes at the Ranch. Muir Ranch also provides paid internships to students, which are funded by private donations, special events, farmer’s market sales, and subscriptions to the produce box program (CSA).

Hollywood Orchard– To better neighborhood quality of life by operating a community orchard that is a teaching model for sustainability through its workshops on growing fruit locally, and sharing the food in open-air events held in the Beachwood Canyon community, outreach communities, and food-charity organizations.

FoLAR Is a non-profit organization founded in 1986, whose mission is to protect and restore the natural and historic heritage of the Los Angeles River and its riparian habitat through inclusive planning, education and wise stewardship. Once home to steelhead and grizzlies, the Los Angeles River meandered through wetlands, marshes, willow, alder and sycamore, providing desperately needed water for the region. Now running over 50 miles long – from the suburbs of the San Fernando Valley to the ocean in Long Beach – the Los Angeles River flows through 14 cities and countless neighborhoods. When the Army Corps of Engineers initiated a flood control project in the late 1930s, they began the process of paving 80% of the River, creating the world’s largest storm drain. Over the ensuing decades, the River that had been the sole water supply for the City of Los Angeles before the Los Angeles Aqueduct was completed in 1913 almost disappeared from public consciousness. With the cement came a perceptual shift: the River no longer existed. Instead, it was a “flood control channel,” a no-man’s land, surrounded by fences and signs.

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