Leena Trivedi-Grenier

Food, Culture and Parent Writer

San Francisco Bay Area

Leena Trivedi-Grenier

Freelance writer focusing on food, culture, race and parenting. Obsessive Canner. Occasional Rapper. (Image by Todd Parsons)



The Tenacity of Chef Reem Assil

A new restaurant, death threats, early labor, and a James Beard nod. In May 2017, the Palestinian- and Syrian-American chef opened Reem’s, a neon-filled Arab bakery in Oakland’s diverse Fruitvale neighborhood. As a former community and labor organizer, Assil wanted a bakery that would serve as an intersectional community space.
Munchies Link to Story

Nafy Flatley’s mission to bring teranga to the United States

A proper pot of mafe starts with the right kind of peanut butter, says Nafy Flatley. But it’s different from what most Americans consider peanut butter, she says, because in her home country of Senegal, the peanut butter is made from scratch, with no sugar. Chinese food in Northern California has never been more varied and exciting.
San Francisco Chronicle Link to Story

For Aisan Hoss, Persian food and dance are traditions worth sharing

Aisan Hoss fries mohi safeed (white fish) in her home, a dish to celebrate Persian New Year. The base for Aisan Hoss’ kuku sabzi, like most any good Iranian dish, is a pound of fresh herbs, and possibly more. For this frittata-like dish, she had patiently minced her way through vibrant green bunches of dill, parsley, cilantro and chives long before I arrived in her Hercules kitchen, filling a large stainless steel bowl to the brim.
San Francisco Chronicle Link to Story

Janice Dulce passes along Filipino culture via arroz caldo

I had stopped by to see her at FOB Kitchen, her pop-up at Gashead Tavern since 2015, which closed Friday, Feb. 2 (a permanent brick-and-mortar location for FOB Kitchen is in the works). We were nestled in a kitchen so small that more than two people felt like a crowd. Yet Dulce looked completely at home in front of a large pot of arroz caldo, stirring homemade chicken stock and ginger-scented rice with one hand while bouncing one of her twin baby daughters with the other.
San Francisco Chronicle Link to Story

How a second-generation Chinese American modernizes his family’s food

The only thing Daniel Situ’s Lower Pac Heights kitchen has in common with the kitchens of his immigrant family are Cantonese ingredients. All of the family kitchens, whether in the city or on the Peninsula, are stocked with fragrant star anise and meaty Maggi seasoning sauce, dry Shaoxing rice wine and bing tong, a brown rock sugar with a caramelized taste that melts into sauces and braises.
San Francisco Chronicle Link to Story

The One Avocado Recipe You Haven’t Tried: Avocado Pickles

Rock-hard, unripe avocados are enough to make a grown person cry (especially if you’re that person and you’re pumped to eat a big bowl of guacamole RIGHT NOW). Maybe the only options at the store were hard and unripe. Or maybe you thought it was ripe, but sliced into it and found otherwise. Sure, you could put it in a paper bag with a banana or in a bowl of rice and wait a day or two until it yields to gentle pressure.
Vida Aguacate Link to Story

Avo Cookies for Santa

There’s a good reason we leave Santa cookies on Christmas Eve: delivering gifts to every kid in the world in one night is a logistical nightmare. Santa deserves a break, and if cookies are his weakness, who are we to hold it against the guy? But there’s a way to give Santa (and your family) a treat without the bulk, and the secret is hidden inside your favorite fruit: avocado.
Avocados from Mexico Link to Story

Mustard oil and tawa fish: One north Indian chef’s comfort food

His wooden cutting board is covered in a vivid rainbow of spices when I arrive at his kitchen, small mountains of powdered red chile, turmeric and carom seeds in white prep bowls. He toasts fennel, cumin and coriander seeds in a dry skillet, shaking the pan every 30 seconds with the steady rhythm of a metronome so it doesn’t burn and turn bitter.
San Francisco Chronicle Link to Story

The Secret’s in the Antacid

Khaman dhokla, a fermented chickpea cake from Gujarat, is India’s great blank-canvas dish. I noticed them out of the corner of my eye while in line at Vik’s Chaat in Berkeley, California: yellow sponge cakes topped with black mustard seeds, chopped cilantro, and coconut. Khaman dhokla! I remembered, as a kid, sneaking into the kitchen while my aunts, Lila Kaki and Rajni Kaki, were setting up dinner.
Taste Cooking Link to Story

Taste Salty, Funky Indian Masala Soda. Then Add Whiskey.

food52 Link to Story

This Japanese Tool Majorly Upped My Ginger Game

theKitchn Link to Story

No-bake Avocado Lime Cheesecake

You know avocados are tasty in guacamole, salads, and sandwiches, but have you ever thought of avocados in cheesecake? Avocados can add an extra bit of creaminess to the batter and when spiked with a healthy dose of lime juice and zest (an avo’s best friend!) , the results are phenomenal. Bonus: You don’t even have to turn on the oven for this cheesecake!
Avocados from Mexico Link to Story


Leena Trivedi-Grenier

I'm a Bay Area writer & journalist focusing on food, culture, travel, parenting and race. I've written for Civil Eats, Chow, The Sage Encyclopedia of Food Issues, The Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in American (2nd Edition), and many others. I have an M.A. in gastronomy from The University of Adelaide/Le Cordon Bleu., a B.A. in speech communications from Bradley University, and an A.A.S. in culinary arts from Joliet Junior College.



  • Recipe writing
  • Restaurant Criticism
  • Essayist
  • Journalist
  • Writer
  • Culture
  • Food
  • Race
  • Parenting