Beginning in January, Peli Peli, Houston's first South African fusion restaurant, kicks off a new charity-of-the-month program, donating a set dollar amount for each prix-fixe brunch and dinner sold throughout that month to a select charity.
The restaurant's first beneficiary: The Sunshine Kids Foundation, a Houston-based non-profit organization that is committed to providing positive group activities and emotional support to young cancer patients.
"The community has given so much to us, and now it's our turn to give back," says Thomas Nguyen, co-owner of Peli Peli. "We visited The Sunshine Kids' facility and are incredibly impressed with the work they do to make a positive impact on the lives of young cancer patients and their families. It's our honor to partner with them in launching this program."
January prix fixe menu offerings will include a four-course $45 dinner menu, with $3 of each meal donated to the charity. Each course offers three choices, and entrée selections include the restaurant's popular Espetada, Curry Chicken, and South African Kingklip.
Fourth course options include European favorite Sticky Toffee pudding or the decadent African Mud Hut—a chocoholic's dream.
An alternate opportunity to eat for a cause is the $25 brunch, available on Saturdays and Sundays. Entrée selections will include South African Eggs Benedict, Bobotie Egg Crepe, and Passion Fruit Crepe with three types of fresh berries and walnuts folded in passion fruit cream.
In addition to the prix-fixe menus, on Saturday, Jan. 24, the Peli Peli staff, along with the restaurant's customer volunteers, will host a fun-filled South African Culinary Carnival for The Sunshine Kids, complete with culinary demonstrations by Chef Paul Friedman; sampling booths where kids will travel from booth to booth to learn about South African foods and ingredients and have their Peli Peli passport stamped; face painting; DJ music; and more.
"Our goal for this event is not only to create an amazing experience for the children, but also to provide an opportunity for the kids to interact with our staff and customers and take their minds off of the medical issues they are dealing with," says Friedman.
Peli Peli, founded in 2009, plans for its second restaurant to open in Houston in April 2015.