US Ambassador Harry Thomas Jr. hosted a celebrity cook-off at his residence in Makati, in “Iron Chef”-style.
Thomas teamed up with US-trained Chef Christine Zarandin (of the Fairmont Hotel), while model Tweetie De Leon joined forces with Chef Luis Gonzalez (of Vask restaurant in Taguig).
The two teams prepared two dishes each for a panel of discerning judges, which included top celebrity Solenn Heussaff, radio DJ Chico Garcia, singers Karylle Tatlonghari and Rico Blanco and cultural activist Carlos Celdran.
Following the celebrity cook-off there was a silent auction to benefit Tukod Foundation, which supports the advancement and appreciation of contemporary Filipino design through art education for indigent Filipinos; beautification of centers for abused children; and a scholarship program.
Among the items auctioned off were clothing and fashion items by Jun Escario, Gabriel Martel, and Paul Cabral; art and photography by Jay Tablante, Pilar Tuason, Ivan Acuña, Bien Bautista, Gutsy Tuason and Wyg Tysman; and boxing gloves signed by Manny Pacquiao.
The US Embassy in Manila raised over P450,000 for the foundation at the end of the highly successful event.