Last year Chef Sonya Coté became apart of a project called “Drawing Lines.” This project is a “community based public project” that has paired 10 artists with 10 districts. Drawing Lines is a response to the vast changes that Austin, Texas has undergone, especially within the recent political shifts. The project aims to answer the questions - “What role can art play within these changes?” The goal of the project is to create a cultural asset map for each of the ten council districts. To Sonya, food is art and food is a movement. She works to create edible pieces of art using locally grown and raised ingredients. Sonya deeply values her connection with food.
In the summer of 2015, Chef Sonya attended Cherry Creek Community Garden’s inaugural celebration. She was directed towards this community through some folks on the Drawing Lines team. After hearing several of the community's stories, she knew that she wanted to pursue her project within this community garden. Sonya was moved by the passion each of the neighbors had for this garden project. She was brought to tears by the stories of loss, gain, and love.
Sonya's contribution to the Cherry Creek Community was a long table built using reclaimed wood from the Bastrop wildfires. This table will be a permanent fixture next to the garden. The table will allow each and every one of the community members to host meals with their loved ones whenever they wish. Sonya's hope is that they will have meaningful interactions while enjoying the harvest of their hard work.
On the evening of the Harvest Moon, September 28th 2015, Sonya hosted a performance dinner at this table for all of the community to enjoy. In honor of their hard work, she also collected recipes that held a special place in their hearts. Today she would like to share these recipes with the world in the form of an illustrated recipe book.
The illustrations you will find in this recipe book are from Sonya’s own hands and imagination. The recipes are from the Cherry Creek Community. Together, they tell a story that can be shared around a table.
A portion of the proceeds of this book will be donated to the Springdale Center for Urban Agriculture.