Cooking With The Neighborhood Chefs

Me and the crew on the set

We all know that cooking shows on television are very popular amongst groups of all ages. You have Hell’s Kitchen, Top Chef, Iron Chef, Master Chef, Chopped, Kitchen Nightmares and the list goes on and on. You also have a slew of good chefs such as Gordon Ramsey, Bobby Flay, Mario Batali, Rachael Ray, Barefoot Contessa, and Justice Stewart 🙂 just to name a few. Let’s face it, we all love food. We are the only species on earth that prepare and serve food in an ton of different ways. I love watching most of the cooking shows on TV, and I enjoy learning cooking tips from the pros. I always would watch the competition shows such as Hell’s Kitchen and scream at my television at bad cooks, wondering how they got there. Then I get a buzz from a Neighborhood Chef producer, Lakesha Wright, who just happened to have seen one of my dishes on a mutual friend’s social network page. Her first question was, “would you like to cook on our new cooking show?”  What!? Me, cook on camera? No way, I won’t dare embarrass myself for all to see, not to mention my stage fright! I felt the need to do a little more investigating before I decided whether to do it or not. Who are the Neighborhood Chefs?

The show was created by the husband and wife team, Samuel & Nicole Small. The parent company, DBC Productions, which not only brings you Neighborhood Chefs, it also brings you Jazz Sessions, Fashion World Magazine, Funny Farm comedy series and more, which are all shown on IBChannel provides a forum for filmmakers and producers who are looking for additional outlets for their content. On September 13th 2011, an old idea — the cooking show — came to life, but with a twist. Neighborhood Chefs premiered. The show highlights the average person who can really get busy in the kitchen, that hidden gem of a cook who may live right next door to you, and you had no idea. The show is a platform for not just the amateur chef, but also eateries and professional chefs as well. So after some encouraging advice from my girlfriend, I decided to give this thing a try.

My first On camera dish!

Latoya Shauntey Snell's Parmesan chicken n pears in wine sauce with salad with grapes

The morning of the show I was my usual self, frantically running around doing everything at the last minute: some food prep, supermarket run, barbershop, etc. That’s just my style, lol.  Upon arriving to the set, I was welcomed by the friendly staff which put me at ease immediately. The chefs highlighted there that day were Chef Jim Takacs (Waterfront Alehouse) with his delicious shrimp, avocado & mango salad, Chef Yvette Woodward and her savory vegetarian fried rice with tofu, and Chef Arianne Benford who demonstrated her polenta with yogurt-batter fried chicken and homemade cinnamon & clove applesauce. Chef Joseph Coco made a gorgeous eggplant Parmesan, and then went on to make eggplant rolatini and eggplant heroes (yes, eggplant three ways). Chef Marie Borusso made beef tenderloin in puff pastry with gorgonzola cheese & caramelized onions. Chef Roshon Martin’s (Uptown145 catering) tropical sea bass with spinach, rice & shrimp was a great dish, and, last but not least, Chef Latoya Shauntay Snell (The Cake Monologues) impressed everyone on set with her Parmesan-crusted chicken breast with pears in wine sauce.

My dish of choice was peppered chicken with mangoes, rum and cashews which is posted here. Things were running behind schedule so I was to go on later than expected. It wasn’t a problem since Chef Roshon kept me in stitches with his one-liners and facial expressions. Not to mention I had the opportunity to watch the other chefs in action and taste the great dishes which is always a pleasure. So while I was setting up and laying out my ingredients with 5 minutes before my segment, I realized something wasn’t right. Hmmmm, OH NO! I had forgotten my scallions at home! Since this was a major ingredient for my dish, and there were none on the set, it was back to the market I went. So after dashing about 8 blocks round trip (I went the wrong direction at first), I had my scallions. I began my segment a little nervous after the adrenaline rush of the “scallion crisis”  and it was visible. But after the first break, I settled down to do what I love doing, which is cook good food. I put the finishing touches on my dish and everyone who tasted it gave it rave reviews. The dish was described by one of the tasters as “a blend of flavors that came as a tasty, tender surprise” and “salty, sweet, spicy, savory, and all delicious!’  So overall I had a great time taping the show and I want to thank Neighborhood Chefs for giving me the opportunity to showcase my skills. I hope to be back. So get yourself over to and check out Neighborhood Chefs and see what’s cooking! I will keep my fans in the loop about an air date for my segment.  Special thanks to Sam & Nicole Small, Lakesha Wright, Glenis Morris, David Rivera, Ariana Matherson, Darcel Morgan, Rodney Fuller, and last but not least Mr. Wendell :)) I had a wonderful time with you guys!   **UPDATE Feb. 2012** I am now part of the DBC family as executive producer for Neighborhood Chefs webTV show. 🙂

  **Watch Episode #3 Of Neighborhood Chefs Here**

Justice with his finished product

Justice, Ariana,Nicole,David

Everyone lined up to taste my mango chicken

About Chef Justice Stewart

I am a former construction worker turned chef from NYC that will educate the average cook on how to prepare restaurant quality meals. Please Subscribe to this blog to enjoy some wonderful recipes and tips.

Posted on September 21, 2011, in Foodie Road Trips & Other Fun Things and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.

  1. Justice,

    Thank you for the glowing endorsement that you have given NeighBorhood Chefs, and DBC as a whole.

    It is for this reason that the premise of NeighBorhood Chefs came to life.

    Chefs, caterers, cooks, and genuine enthusiasts of the culinary genre that have been passed
    on for generations have a chance to shine from a different view.

    You are truly a shining star that will rise to the height of the culinary world.

    It was a pleasure to have you grace NeighBorhood Chefs with your talent, knowledge and

    The freedom to be, the power to do.

    Glenis Morris


  2. Justice –
    Thank you for sharing your wonderful experience with us all. Awesome review!!
    I must say, so far the NeighBorhood Chefs show has sparked an interest within me… I’m stepping out of my comfort zone, and experimenting with a couple of new recipes that you have shared with me, as well as some that I looked up on the internet as well.

    Looking forward to seeing you on national television gracing us all with your wonderful culinary skills, or perhaps you’ll publish your own Cook Book? The sky is the limit!

    Good luck, and GOD BLESS!

    ~Nancy Matherson


  3. Thank you so much for sharing on your blog, your experience about your appearance on the Neighborhood Chefs show. It was a pleasure to have experienced the wonderful dishes that you and all of the chefs that have appeared on our set have elegantly COOKED for the show. It was a beautiful experience. We are honored that you have not only created such a creative dish, but that you have written such a rave review about us.

    On the set, we try to make everyone feel relaxed and at home. From reading your blog…. we have done just that!

    Thank you Justice, you are a Neighborhood Chef!






  6. ❤ aww que hermosa es tu Pagina en verdad te admiro y respeto por tanto trabajo que haces..por que eres cheff.trabajas en construcion,ers esposo y Padre wowwwwww mil felicitaciones Justiceeeeeeeee con amor Zaandii 🙂


  7. Hi Justis i like ur blog and u’r recipes……………..


  8. Thank you so much Amal 🙂


  9. Love it!!!!


  10. Awesome! Wish we had something like that here in Detroit.


  11. Really awesome story. You must have been buzzed for days. I work in advertising and I know how difficult it is to step in front of a radio mike. In front of the camera and to cook. Very difficult. Well done.


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