The WNET Group announced the launch of The Plate Show, a new eight-part comedy podcast for children 6-9 years old and their families about cultures around the world and the foods that are important to them. The Plate Show is brought to listeners in partnership with public media organization PRX ––one of the world’s top podcast publishers and public radio distributors –– and premieres weekly on Tuesdays beginning October 31.
The Plate Show will be available free on-demand at theplateshow.org and across all major podcast platforms, including Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music, Overcast and Pocket Casts.
Jasmine Romero (Sesame Street, Chompers, Princess of South Beach) stars as Spoonie, a talking spoon. She is joined by her best friend Tongs, played by Jonathan Butler-Duplessis (Hamilton). Each episode, Spoonie interviews guests about their favorite foods and special traditions from their culture, right from the kitchen countertop. She and Tongs play interactive games, meet celebrity chefs and real kids, share recipes and tell jokes. Along with listeners, they also try new foods and learn communication, collaboration, and relationship building skills with others from different backgrounds.
Celebrity chef participants include J. Kenji Lopez-Alt, author of the children’s book Every Night is Pizza Night as well as bestselling cookbooks The Food Lab and The Wok: Recipes and Techniques; James Beard Award winner JJ Johnson; Pati Jinich, cookbook author, host of the three-time James Beard Award-winning PBS television series Pati’s Mexican Table and resident chef at the Mexican Cultural Institute in Washington, D.C.; Author of The Palestinian Plate, and speaker, Reem Kassis; Kevin Noble Maillard, journalist and scholar who wrote the children’s book, Fry Bread: A Native American Family Story; Elyssa Heller, founder and CEO of Edith’s, a celebrated modern and global Jewish deli; Yewande Komolafe, contributor to New York Times Cooking and featured in the children’s cookbook, Waffles + Mochi: Get Cooking!; and Calvin Eng, owner of acclaimed Brooklyn-based Cantonese American restaurant Bonnie’s.
Featured themes include pumpkin dishes, Caribbean food, street food, pancakes from around the world, Native American dishes, Jewish food, Nigerian cooking and Lunar New Year. Over the course of each episode, the characters also practice critical life skills, such as Spoonie learning patience while baking challah for the first time or navigating Tongs’ fear of spicy food.
Inspired by real families looking for ways to help their kids develop curiosity and respect for other cultures, The Plate Show was developed as part of the Ready to Learn podcast accelerator program, led by PRX. The accelerator program is part of the CPB-PBS Ready To Learn Initiative, funded by the U.S. Department of Education to help young children and their families build vital skills to succeed in school, work and life.
The Plate Show is produced by The WNET Group in collaboration with PRX. Sandra Sheppard, Melinda Toporoff and Jocelyn Gonzales are executive producers. Hannah Dawe and Norah Jones are producers. Production manager is Toni Carlson. Writing team includes Jesenia Ruiz, Monique D. Hall, Moujan Zolfaghari, Carlee Malemute, Tiffany Ezuma, and Scott Gray. Educational and cultural consultants include Charissa Cheah, Ross Thompson, Iakowi:he’ne’ Oakes, and Shayne Figueroa.
Funding is made possible in part by a Ready To Learn grant provided by the U.S. Department of Education to the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Additional funding is provided by the New York State Education Department.