Chef Asia B. Brings Southern Comfort to NYC with Sweet and Savory Twists

Explore the complexity of Chef Asia Bullocks’s sweet and savory creations in NYC, rooted in Southern culinary traditions.

Chef Asia B. Brings Southern Comfort to NYC with Sweet and Savory Twists

Photo Cred: Chef Asia B

Experimenting alongside the Food Network

Growing up in Brooklyn, New York, Chef Asia B. followed the Food Network stars and was enamored by their skills, from elaborate knife skills to creating creamy Italian sauces. She started to cook at a young age with the help of her mother, becoming the home chef preparing meals for her family on weeknights. Realizing her growing passions, her mother provided endless cookbooks introducing her to new flavors and cuisines.

Growing up, I asked myself how to incorporate art into my career: Do I want to attend art school? Do I want to be an art teacher? Do I want to do art photography? Because my school had a lot of artistic activities – it opened my eyes to the idea of combining my passion for cooking and creative design.

From food science to sweet and savory treats

In search of a way to apply her passions to practice, she studied food science at Monroe College – admittedly, she found it tedious. While food science allowed her to experiment with new flavors, Chef Asia B. was eager to jump into food entrepreneurship – opening Asia B. Sweet Treats in 2014 as a pastry chef. Privately catering sweet treats for events in NYC, she started her first business, focusing solely on pastries and cakes.

However, Chef Asia B. wanted to explore other opportunities within the traditionally strict culinary roles. When searching back into her initial childhood curiosity around food, she began to practice developing Southern flavors within pastries and sweets. This realization pushed her to pivot her business to incorporate sweet and savory within her North Carolina heritage.

I never wanted to put myself in a box, and I don't do that now, and it's rewarding to see. I'm not just a chef. I'm not just a pastry chef. I never wanted to limit myself to one little thing because sometimes, people get burnt out from it. Besides being a chef, executive chef, or pastry chef, there's much more range in the food space now. Whether it's a full content creator, food blogger, food editor, food photographer, etc, it's just amazing to see that we're not just it's just not one check-off box.

Today, Chef Asia B. brings sweet and savory southern food to her home in New York City through private catering events and classes. Her late grandmother, Edna Earl, inspires her to cook and recreate meals centered around meals that remind her of home. 

As far as the southern part of my background to dedicate to my grandmother, my family is Southern. All my family is from North Carolina. I wanted to tie in my love for food storytelling, creating what I wanted to do in my future. I didn't have anything; I just knew that I loved food.

Sweet and Savory Rosemary Buttermilk Fried Chicken

Southern Comfort Food classics such as honey butter cornbread muffins, rosemary buttermilk fried chicken, and Chef Asia B. finishes each dish with sweet and savory twists. Incorporating her Hot Honey Sauce, which she developed as a stand-alone food product, Chef Asia B. ensures all catered meals will provide core new flavor experiences.

Serving up her grandmother Edna’s favorite dishes, Chef Asia B. presents dishes from childhood with her take on the traditions from home. Baking blackberry peach cobbler and apple bread pudding, she mirrors her grandmother in the kitchen while working her tweaks to past techniques. 

I describe my food and what I do as sweet and savory. I am not a plain. I'm not a plain woman - even my wardrobe. Everything I do is very extra, and I make no apologies about it.

Jumping into food entrepreneurship within NYC has provided her endless opportunities to be creative in the kitchen. Chef Asia B. continues to test the confines of what defines her work. Whether her work focus will change in the future, she finds excitement in actively redefining what a ‘chef’ or ‘pastry chef’ looks like. Through her testing and experimentation with sweet and savory foods, Chef Asia B. provides a new culinary experience that traverses the space between traditional roles in the kitchen. 

If you want to get into the food entrepreneur space, know there is no timeframe – there will always be challenges. Even in this food space as a Black woman. You have to find you; you have to love what you do. You can't just do it and get on the bandwagon and think, " Oh, this is everyone else doing it.

Planning a team-building event?

Explore our virtual and in-person cooking classes, mixology experiences and more — all hosted by Black chefs and culinary creators.