Simonetta Pattuglia, University of Rome Tor Vergata
Seta Dakessian | Seta’s Cafe in Belmont and Farmers Markets in Boston & Somerville
Yvonne Maffei, MA
My Halal Kitchen
Yvonne Maffei, MA is a food and travel writer, an independent researcher, author, entrepreneur and a Halal economy subject matter expert.
She is the founder of the first website on Halal food & cooking, MyHalalKitchen.com, with a mission to make global cuisine Halal and to spread the concept of culinary diplomacy as a means to bring people to the table to share common values.
Yvonnes’s work has been featured in The New York Times, The Chicago Tribune, CNN’s Eatocracy, Forbes magazine, CBS Religion & News, NPR, Chicago Public Radio,, The Chicago History Museum, the Aga Khan Museum (Canada) and other prominent media globally.
She has been an invited guest to the Obama White House and a repeat host of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services community health programs on her social media platform. She has been published in scientific journals such as the Food Studies Journal and presented at Cornell University’s Language of Food Conference, the World Halal Summit (Istanbul, Turkey).
She has served as an advisor to the government of Uzbekistan on GastroTourism and most recently spoke about the opportunities in the American Halal consumer market at the Islamic Development Bank Private Sector Forum in Egypt. As a corporate consultant, Yvonne has advised Aramark Corporation for the first ever all-Halal university dining facility at NYU Manhattan. Yvonne has transformed both the culinary and Halal food industries by being the first ambassador of the promotion of Halal food both in the U.S. and abroad.
Yvonne’s own culinary interests and ethnic background being Sicilian and Puerto Rican have led her research interests towards studying the cuisine of al-Andalus, Arab Sicily, and the Ottoman Empire’s palace foods. She has lived and traveled abroad in order to dive deeper and learn historic and modern culinary applications in such places as southern France, Italy, Spain, Morocco, the Greek islands, Turkey, Bosnia and Croatia.
Yvonne’s cookbooks include My Halal Kitchen (2016) and Summer Ramadan Cooking (2013). She resides in San Diego, California.