IKEA Announces "Together, We Eat" Contest Winners Celebrating How Food Connects People

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Three Grand Prize Winners Share the Recipes and Stories Behind Beloved Family Dishes

IKEA "Together, We Eat" contest celebrates how food connects people. Photo Credit: IKEA U.S.

Having shared just a few examples of treasured family food moments, we hope to inspire people to create more food-related memories together in what we often refer to as the heart of the home - the kitchen

Today IKEA U.S. announced the results of the Together, We Eat contest, a quest launched earlier this year to find the fifty best consumer stories behind cherished family recipes. The contest celebrated the power of food and how the many activities around it – from preparing to serving to eating – bring loved ones together in and around the kitchen.

Three grand-prize winners were selected from 4,617 total entries across three contest themes:

1) Wintertime Favorites (Cool Weather & Comfort Food Dishes): Megan Hoffman from Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif. with “Our Doughball Tradition”: This pierogi recipe dates back five generations, beginning with Megan’s great-grandmother. Having been passed down generation to generation, the making of the traditional Hungarian dish is an event for the whole family every Christmas Eve, with fathers, uncles, cousins and brothers pitching in to create the pierogis, while the women of the family engage in an annual tradition of craft-making.

2) Serving Up Spring (Fresh Ingredients from Garden to Table): Amy White from Manchester, Conn. with "Good Fences Make Good Neighbors": Living across the street and having witnessed her neighbor, Barb’s beautiful vegetable garden flourishing, Amy was inspired to start a garden of her own. Today, the neighbors engage in an ongoing friendly rivalry – whose tomatoes are reddest? Whose onions are bigger? The best part is being able to share the fruits of their labor together. One recipe in particular – a Spring Onion and Ricotta Fresca Tart is a group favorite and neighborhood tradition. Barb’s always willing to open her garden for anything Amy needs to make it, so long as she shares!

3) Social Summer (Picnics, Cookouts, Reunions & More): Carol Powell from Williamsburg, Ky. with “The Powell Family Homegrown Salsa”: This salsa recipe is a labor of love, beginning with the fresh herbs and vegetables grown by Carol and her husband in their garden. What began as a solution to an overflowing crop of homegrown Roma tomatoes has resulted in a cherished recipe and family tradition – picking and dicing veggies and canning a deliciously fresh homegrown salsa, perfect for sharing at summertime get-togethers.

Judged on relevance to the Together, We Eat theme, originality & creativity of the entry and overall storytelling, the winners’ stories bring to life the idea of food as the great connector, representing the supreme power of food in gathering loved ones together – from growing and sourcing ingredients, to chopping, dicing, serving and ultimately sitting down together at the table.

Hoffman, White and Powell will each receive a prize package including a $1,500 IKEA gift card, a trip for two to New York City and a photo shoot / spread to be included in a future issue of O, The Oprah Magazine and a “Dinner Party Kit” consisting of IKEA kitchen-related products. Additionally, a total of 47 first-prize winners across all categories were awarded a $250 IKEA gift card. All 50 recipes and stories will be featured on TogetherWeEat.com/contest at various points throughout the year, starting with the three grand prize winners.

“These and the thousands of other wonderful stories we read really exemplify the idea that there is so much more to food than food,” said Lisa Hajra, Together, We Eat Project Leader for IKEA. “Having shared just a few examples of treasured family food moments, we hope to inspire people to create more food-related memories together in what we often refer to as the heart of the home – the kitchen.”

Together, We Eat is a part of a yearlong IKEA effort focusing on everyday life in and around the kitchen – celebrating the many treasured moments that happen there and simple solutions as they relate to growing, cooking, serving and storing food.

For more information and to learn more about the Together, We Eat winners and their stories, please visit TogetherWeEat.com/contest.

About IKEA
Since its 1943 founding in Sweden, IKEA has offered home furnishings of good design and function at low prices so the majority of people can afford them. There are currently more than 377 IKEA stores in 47 countries, including 41 in the U.S. IKEA incorporates sustainability into day-to-day business and supports initiatives that benefit children and the environment. For more information see IKEA-USA.com, @IKEAUSANews, @IKEAUSA or IKEAUSA on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Pinterest.


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Allie Bostwick

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