A sizzling new competition series celebrating Black chefs is coming to OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network.
The Great Soul Food Cook-Off will feature challenges highlighting the past and present of soul food, OWN and Discovery+ announced Thursday. The show will introduce eight chefs who battle it out, but only one competitor will take home the grand prize of $50,000.
“Soul food describes a style of cuisine that represents the creativity and skill of Black cooks from many cultures within the African diaspora,” Tina Perry, president of OWN, said in a statement. “This series is a celebration of long-standing traditions we hope to introduce and spotlight for new and existing viewers as we shine a light on a few of today’s most talented Black chefs and culinary curators.”
The six-episode, one-hour series will be hosted by chef and television personality Kardea Brown, who is well-known for hosting Food Network’s Delicious Miss Brown.
Brown will be joined by some of the world’s best chefs, including Eric Adjepong and Melba Wilson, as they critique the chefs’ weekly cuisines. Additional judges include: Tanya Holland, Alexander Smalls, BJ Dennis, Tiffany Derry, Millie Peartree and Kwame Onwuachi.
The contestants come from the across the U.S.:
-Chris Scott, 53 (Chef/Owner, Butterfunk Biscuit Co. – Harlem, NY)
-Dorian Hunter, 47 (Chef/Caterer, Elevated Soul – Atlanta, GA)
-Fred Fluellen, 32 (Private Chef/Caterer, Fluniversity – Atlanta, GA)
-Jamarius Banks, 28 (Private Chef – Atlanta, GA)
-Jermaine Smith, 48 (Chef/Owner, Henry’s Soul Cafe – Washington, D.C.)
-Razia Sabour, 40 (Private Chef/Caterer, Fuller Food – Atlanta, GA)
-Shacafrica Simmons, 47 (Private Chef/Caterer, Southern Fusion – Tallahassee, FL)
-Tirzah Love, 38 (Chef/Owner, Private Chef/ Caterer – Oakland, CA)
The competition will kick off with a “Soul Start Challenge” paying homage to the foundational “meat and three,” a meal featuring a portion of meat and three sides that are African-American community must-haves. The winning team holds an advantage going into the main cook-off challenge, where the chefs create innovative dishes with staple ingredients.
The series is produced by Good Egg Entertainment, the company behind Food Network’s Chopped.
The Great Soul Food Cook-Off premieres on Friday, May 6, with new episodes every Friday through June 10 on OWN.