‘Cook for Ukraine’: Russian and Ukrainian chefs join forces for food fundraiser

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'Cook for Ukraine': Russian and Ukrainian chefs join forces for food fundraiser

Ukrainian chef Olia Hercules and Russian chef Alissa Timoshkin have teamed up to create the 'Cook for Ukraine' initiative   —  

Ukrainian chef Olia Hercules and Russian chef Alissa Timoshkina, long-time friends living in London, are leading a food fundraising initiative for UNICEF.

‘Cook for Ukraine’ celebrates people coming together over the simple act of sharing food.

The initiative which, aims to gather donations for Ukrainian families, and encourage restaurants and food lovers to cook more Ukrainian dishes, was launched immediately after the invasion of Ukraine.

For Alissa, who experienced «guilt and shame» as a Russian, the initiative also aims at showing the many cultural connections between the two countries, of which food is «a huge part».

«You can be a restaurant or a catering company, or just a mum or a dad who wants to do a bake, kind of like a sale at a school. And then people cook and they collect money and then they donate it to our Just Giving UNICEF page,» explains Olia Hercules.

Cook for Ukraine are hosting an event at The British Library theatre on 22 March to help raise awareness for the incredible food of Ukraine, and how it crosses many borders and communities.

Olia and Alissa will be speaking with travel and food writer Caroline Eden and the event will be introduced by Israeli-born British chef Yotam Ottolenghi.

The fundraiser has already raised over €280,000.

Donations can be made here.

Check out the video above to learn more about ‘Cook for Ukraine’

Video editor • Theo Farrant

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