Chef Bruno Abate is one of Chicago’s best chefs. He owns the popular Wicker Park restaurant Tocco, where the authentic pizza is a slice of his native Italy right here in Chicago.
He was recently awarded a $50,000 grant from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur foundation – but it has nothing to do with the creative dishes he makes at Tocco.
Instead, Abate is being recognized for a unique program he started at the Cook County Jail, called “Recipe for Change.” He works with inmates at the jail, to teach them culinary skills – and life lessons – so they can find jobs in the restaurant industry once they’re released from the jail.
“Anything you do in life,” Abate said, “There is a recipe for making the change for yourself and for other people.”