Project Feast, a non-profit dedicated to empowering immigrants and refugees to secure sustainable employment in the food industry, has opened Ubuntu Street Cafe, 202 W. Gowe St., in the Titusville building in downtown Kent.
Project Feast’s four-month culinary apprenticeship program, accredited by Highline College, is offered for immigrants and refugees looking to gain skills and experience for a career in the food industry. The class meets at the cafe every weekday for five hours of intensive culinary training.
Ubuntu Street Cafe is powered by the culinary apprenticeship program and is open from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. for lunch Wednesday through Friday.
In addition to the cafe, Project Feast offers catering, pop-up dinners and other community events (tickets and dates are posted on their website: projectfeast.org/).
Although the menu will change with each new class of apprentices, it currently highlights cuisine from Ukraine, Ethiopia and Iraq.
Iryna, an immigrant from the Ukraine introduced Borscht ($5), red beets, green cabbage,and potatoes with beef broth that “must always be served with a pampushka (a mini garlic roll)” to be the authentic dish she remembers from home. She plans to use the skills and knowledge gained from her apprenticeship with Project Feast to open a bakery in South Seattle.
Bebe, a refugee from the DR Congo plans to develop her customer service skills to secure steady employment in the food industry and eventually start her own business. Tenaye, an immigrant from Ethiopia, wanted to showcase her home country’s Injera and Beef Roll ($8), a teff flatbread filled with spicy stewed beef. Upon graduation, she hopes to support her family working in a kitchen. Other dishes include Tepsi Bathenjan ($8), Burmese Chicken Curry ($8), Tres Leches Cupcake ($3), and a Chai family recipe ($3).
As a 501(c)3 nonprofit, all proceeds from the cafe are used to fuel Project Feast’s programs to support immigrants and refugees, as well as to be a platform for intercultural exchange through food. Through hands on training in their commercial kitchen and lunch restaurant, leadership skill building, and job readiness support, Project Feast’s goal is to help their participants unlock their potential as culinary professionals and community leaders.