This February with Celebrate Soulfully, we are commemorating Black History Month with experiences that honor Black heritage and culture through music, food, art and more.
Meet Kima and Twon, two Disney Springs culinary cast members who are sharing a piece of their heritage with dishes they have created for this celebration.
Growing up in Colorado Springs, Kima always looked forward to her family gatherings on Sundays, when Grandma took over the kitchen with the spices of her Jamaican and Puerto Rican roots. Kima’s favorite was the jerk chicken and that’s what inspired her to create the Jamaican Jerk Chicken Frites at The Daily Poutine. Made of sweet ‘n’ hot jerk marinated chicken, pineapple salsa, scotch bonnet aioli and fries, the dish is a nod to her grandma – a tribute to the person that shaped her love for food.
“I started cooking when I was about 5 years old,” remembers Kima. “The first thing I learned how to cook was mac and cheese and collard greens and I’ve been cooking ever since.”
Food has always been an important part of her life and her culture, and that’s what drove her to pursue a career in the culinary arts.
Being an only child, Kima appreciates her Disney family, who have contributed to her growth over the past 14 years of her Disney career and celebrate her accomplishments. And this is only the beginning for Kima, who has many more goals to conquer here at Disney!
As the oldest of 12 siblings growing up in Orlando, Florida, Twon spent a lot of time in the kitchen. With so many siblings, his parents worked, sending Twon to the kitchen at the young age of 10 to cook for his family. One of those family dishes of his youth inspired the Chicken Jambalaya Dog he created for B.B. Wolf’s Sausage Co.
“As I got older, I added my own flair to it, and I found out that it’s a generational thing. My grandmother made it for my mom, then my mom made it for us, and now I’m so excited that guests at Disney Springs get to try a piece of my heritage.” His version of the dish is a combination of smoked sausage, roasted corn and lemon caper aioli served on a Tuscan roll.
One of the things Twon enjoys the most about cooking is watching people’s reactions when taking that first bite of a dish he has prepared. And serving his food to guests who visit Disney Springs from around the world, has given him the perfect stage to hone his craft.
“To be honest, Disney refined me in the culinary field. I’ve learned how to be organized, make sure that my flavors are on properly and how to build new flavors. I’ve grown so much with this company, and I feel my skills are at a place I never thought they would be.”
Join us in celebrating cast members like Kima and Twon during Celebrate Soulfully and all year long. If you haven’t tried the Jamaican Jerk Chicken Frites at The Daily Poutine or the Chicken Jambalaya Dog at B.B. Wolf’s, make sure to stop by Disney Springs soon – you won’t regret it!
Interested in joining our culinary team? Learn more at jobs.disneycareers.com.