This week, our guest food editor, Sandy Ho, put something special together to highlight six Los Angeles-based chefs. We are so honored to share the work of these incredible creators and hope you will join us in support of their initiatives. Here, Sandy chats with Quianna Bradley of A Pinch of Salt on how she got her start, what makes her move, and how she has been affected by this incredible and unprecedented moment in time.
SH: How has Covid 19 and the Black Lives Matter movement affected you and your business?
QB: To be honest, COVID 19 was a blessing and a curse. I was going through a tough period in my personal and business life and really needed a break. I needed the world to slow down so that I could get my head back in the game. COVID 19 gave me just that. As a chef and caterer tho, it's been rough trying to find a place in all this. By March 25th all events we booked had been canceled with no reschedule date in sight. Even restaurants had shut their doors, finding work was more difficult than ever before. The "current movement in the world" has given black business owners the chance to step up and shine. More people are looking to support black businesses.
SH: Describe a pivotal moment in your career that has led you to where you are now.
QB: The most pivotal moment that has happened so far was the night I forgot the salad dressing and ran out of food!
I was catering a fundraiser event for 200 people in Long Beach and once it was time for the food to be served I realized I didn't have dressing. I feel as if my brain shut off. Even though there was a store around the corner, I had no idea what to do. My assistant for the night watched as the ship was sinking and never once offered to run tot he store. At that same event, once I thought all the tables had been served we began serving seconds, low and behold one table never got to eat and we ended up running out of food. I thought my head was going to explode. It was after this event that I realized that I didn't like the stress and responsibility of feeding such a large crowd of people. I felt like such a failure I almost walked away completely from my business. It would take years before I was confident enough to restart and relaunch. So here we are 2020 and I am no longer catering events with over 50 people.
SH: What empowers you to wake up in the morning and what keeps you up at night?
QB: Such a good question! I believe the thing that empowers me most is love. Whether it's the love I have for myself or the love poured onto me by my kids. Love keeps me going. Even on the darkest days.
Different things keep me up at night for different reasons. Sometimes it's fear and worry, sometimes it's excitement and love. Most of the time it's coffee. LOL
SH: Where do you see yourself in the future of food for the world?
QB: Honestly, I am not really trying to reinvent the wheel. My dream is to be a highly sought after private chef, that no one really knows. I don't know if that makes sense. I just want to make good food and travel around the world in my converted school bus doing so. I also plan on hosting pop up dinners and small networking events as I begin to make a name for myself. I would also like to begin shooting food like art. I have a background in photography as well, I think it's time for me to merge the two.
SH: How can we stay up to date with what you’re doing?
QB: You can follow me on Instagram. @chefqui_