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Chef José Andrés on feeding millions in Puerto Rico, plus what he’d cook for Chrissy Teigen

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LOS ANGELES (CIrca) - When Hurricane Maria, a Category 5 hurricane, made a direct landfall in Puerto Rico in September 2017, the island suffered a massive destruction, with little to no power and water left for millions of residents.

The storm had destroyed about 80 percent of the island's power transmission lines, and many residents still didn't have access to clean running water for up to two months or more. Food would have also been a catastrophic problem, had chef José Andrés not gone to help.

As soon as Andrés landed in Puerto Rico, he started calling the chefs he knew in Puerto Rico - and their motto was "Let's not plan, let's not meet, let's start cooking."

"Almost 28 days later, more than 10 food trucks, more than 7000 volunteers, 18 kitchens... we served more than two million meals," Andrés said in his TED Talk.

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He recently spoke at the Los Angeles Times Food Bowl event called "Changing the world through the power of food" along with guests including Zooey Deschanel. We caught up with him before the event to hear all about how he was able to feed millions within weeks in Puerto Rico.

The Michelin-starred chef was also recently recognized at a gala hosted by City Harvest - a food rescue non-profit - with Chrissy Teigen, who raised millions of dollars for the charity. So we had to ask: What would you cook for Chrissy Teigen if you had one meal to wow her?

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Related:
Maria wiped out 80% of Puerto Rico’s crops. This farmer is keeping things in perspective.
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