Picture this. You're in Italy for a month with your family. After about two weeks, you are sick of eating out and eating huge meals of mile-high pasta and Italian crusted pizza. You also want to experience the real and authentic food that you can find in Italy, not just the in the restaurants you find on "The 100 Best Places to Eat in Italy." What do you do? Hire your OWN chef. Sound crazy? Search "The Traveling Spoon" on the internet and you might find exactly what you are looking for. 

How it works?

The Traveling Spoon is a program that was created in order to connect people all across the world through one simple idea: cooking. Hundreds of cities participate, and all you need to do is login to the website and book a chef. You enter a location including what type of food you want and then the host chef will show up at your doorstep. This allows you to not to get the country's authentic food, but you are also able to learn about where the ingredients came from and how the meal comes together. 

The program offers three specific things: in-home meals, cooking experience, and market visits. The chefs provide meals that are specific and unique to their culture, and cook it for you in your own convenient kitchen. They also allow you to learn about the kitchen traditions of the country you are in. Finally, the host chef can take you to local markets, so you are able to discover and purchase local products, that you can then turn into a meal.

How it started?

A women named Steph Lawrence went on a month long trip to China in 2007. Her goal of the trip was to fully emerge herself in the chinese culture, and specifically its food. She ended up moving to China full time in order to fulfill her goals, and to learn more about the types of food. 

Four years later, Aashi Vel took a trip to Mexico with a similar goal. However, everywhere she dined in Mexico, failed on her dream of eating real and authentic Mexican food.  

The two met later that year in business school, and they not only bonded over their love for food, but their love of travel. In 2013, they created and launched the company "The Traveling Spoon."

How to get involved?

First step: take a trip to "The Traveling Spoon" website and create an account. This will allow you to find out more specific information about certain types of meals, different kinds of chefs, and what countries this program offers. 

There is a long interview process for anyone interested in becoming a host, so that the company is able to be confident in the safety and well-being of the customers. However, they strongly encourage anyone who is hardworking and passionate about food community to show interest or join. Their goal is to provide the opportunity for different cultures and foods to be spread among the world.

How is is changing the world?

Food is something that the entire world shares, no matter what religion, race, or gender someone is. Food creates memories for millions of people, whether it's a mom cooking a meal for her family of ten, or a 19 year old making her daily morning avocado toast. Food has the capability for connections and passions to come alive.

The Traveling Spoon company is creating those connections and those passions. They are able to introduce a new culture, dish, or type of grain, to one person. And then that person can share it to ten people, and then to hundreds. People traveling to Buenos Aires, that live in Tokyo, are able to share their passion for food. The opportunities are endless.

In a time where the world is divided by politics, borders, and gender, food will always be something that intertwines millions and makes the world a better place. The Traveling Spoon is a first step to creating connections between countries and people.