Joline Martin and Liz Datoo believe magic happens in the kitchen when two women work together to create beautiful food.
That magic translates to not only a love of food, but community too.
The two friends, under the name of Spices and Blarney, are collaborating to create May Day Magic – a fundraising evening of exotic Indian food and entertainment May 2 in Comox, with a goal of raising $10,000 for Dawn to Dawn Action on Homelessness.
“Both Liz and I believe in giving back to the local community. Dawn to Dawn is so very worthy, being a grassroots organization,” says Martin. “We looked at each other and asked what group do we both believe in, and we both said Dawn to Dawn.”
The organization’s goal is to create a comprehensive transitional housing program for homeless and at-risk individuals and families in the Comox Valley.
Martin says the organization also supports community soccer, a community garden, a trailer program in conjunction with Maple Pool Campground, a residential program, and utilizes evidence-based best practices with the program.
The duo’s background and experience – Datoo’s in cooking and event planning, and Martin’s in social work and working with housing societies – came together and they planted the seed for the event in December of last year.
“I’m married to Azim who comes from a family of amazing Indian cooks,” explains Datoo. “I learned through their family because it does take a lot of (cooking) on a regular basis. Over the years, I learnt how to do a pretty good curry.”
She takes pleasure from combining good food and a party atmosphere.
“When you’ve got good food, good company, you’ve got it made. That’s where the passion comes from.”
Datoo adds when she met Martin, she knew she had someone who knew all the nuances with cooking, although Martin admits cooking did not come naturally.
“My girlfriends taught me to cook, and I learned from a lot of people. I lived on Haida Gwaii for years and am now really good with fish and game.”
Describing it as “some of the best food in the world,” Datoo says she has experience preparing dinners for large groups of people, and looks forward to the menu planning and preparation.
They promise a variety of Indian meat and vegetarian dishes, along with some of the “best ever” samosas, combining with entertainment to create a magical evening.
“We decided it’s go big or go home,” adds Datoo with a laugh.
The event is taking place at the D’Esterre House in Comox at 6 p.m. May 2. Tickets are $100 each with a $75 tax receipt available, and can be purchased at the Laughing Oyster Bookstore in Courtenay or at Blue Heron Books in Comox.
For more information, call Joline at 250-331-0778 or Liz at 250-338-6284.