We’re curating the food and drink for Somerset House’s Generation Get Up! Weekend celebrating 50 years of Black British creativity and the #WindrushGeneration. Part of this is through the food – so here are the 13 traders (KERBanist and guests) who’ll be firing your bellies before you head indoors for the Get Up, Stand Up Now exhibition AND how 6 of them were inspired by their parents and grandparents’ generation to start their businesses.
Previously known as ‘Garden of Edun’ and FOREVER to be know for their mega spicy Fly Wings – you may recognise Jess & Jo from trading on our InKERBator Programme. They’ve now left to focus on parties and popups which lies at the heart of why they started their food business:
“Our greatest inspiration and strength is our Grandma. In Nigeria known as our Mama, her name was Mary Obahiagbon. She taught us that nothing was beyond our reach and any challenges could be overcome once we had a full belly. She came to the UK In the 80s in search of a better life for my mother and her siblings. She regularly visited the UK beforehand and fell in love with the fashion and the female empowerment movement that saw women being liberated from their previous stereotypical roles.
Queen of hosting, she inspired us to cook because we saw first hand, what sharing great food and our culture could do to united communities – through her famous Hackney yard parties drawing neighbours in with suya beef, smoked turkey legs and laughter”.
KERBanist / jerk fried chicken big-hitters, Jess and Luke from Only Jerkin’ (above, collaborating with Kelis at Jam on Rye Festival). Luke’s inspiration for starting their food biz came from his Grandma; he uses her recipes in the seasoning (and he still wont share with us!)
“My Nan, Hilma Dawes, came to the UK from Jamaica in the mid 50’s seeking a new life with my Grandad. They met in kingston when my Nan was training to be a seamstress and Grandad had his own taxi company.
It was never my intention to get into street food until I started experimenting with my cooking at home. I naturally used flavours I had experienced growing up, from my Nan’s jerk chicken to my moms ackee and salt fish or my aunties Saturday soup and I always appreciated the strong flavours and how they never shied away from heat and spice! My experience of eating was always being part of a family – 30+ of us round Nan’s table for Sunday dinner (favourite were the fruit punches and coconut ice cream for dessert – which is I love food because it brings communities together.
Nan on the windrush boat! 👇” – Luke Dawes
KERB ALUMNI return! Vinn Goute’s octopus curry is one of the best things we’ve ever eaten on the kerb. Kristoph and Julie left us in 2017 to focus on events and Kristoph’s career in architecture – and we’re over the moon to have them back for Generation Get Up! Weekend.
“Our story starts in our Aunty Maria’s kitchen where she would recreate our granny’s – ‘Manmi’s – recipes. The scent of onions being sautéed with crushed ginger, garlic and the linger of the cinnamon in the air didn’t jut fill your nostrils but your tummy too. When the food was done, Aunty Maria would call us into the kitchen ‘vini, vinn goute’ which means come, come taste.The food just took you back to the holidays we would spend in Seychelles, coconut leaves swaying in the wind as we chomped on mouth watering chilli balls, sweating from the heat of the pepper, freshly fried fish with tomato and onion dressing. So many dishes to name. Aunty Maria came over in 1989 it was the one thread that kept you close to the family you had left in Seychelles and to the new friends you made here”.
Chef / author / food activist in South East London – Zoe’s initial inspiration for cooking came from her father, Charles Adjonyoh (below) who came to the UK from Ghana in 1975. Her only connection to Ghana was through the ingredients that he brought home from from the market – Kenkey, Banku, Fufu, dried fishes, and she began to watch him cook as a way of connecting to Ghanaian heritage.
From selling peanut butter stew outside her front door to supper cubs in Hackney, watch her Ted Talk above for the journey.
Tieyan Eweka-Olorunfemi started her business after graduating from the Tree Shepherd’s Start Your Own Enterprise initiative in 2017 and now trades at White City’s new market. (Go visit!) Inspiration for cooking:
“My mum Florence Eweka, moved to the UK in 1974 to study. Cooking from a young age, her love of food enabled an open mind towards different cuisines which gave way to her putting her own twist on the meals she prepared, this not only inspired me but taught me from an early age not to be afraid to experiment with food and to try as many variations of it as possible. My mum used to make the most delicious moussaka, which is the reason I love aubergines”.
Bode Olaleye started Moyo London in 2014. Moyo means ‘happy’ which is what you’ll be when you try their BBQ Suya-spiced skewers at Somerset House this weekend. The inspiration behind his business:
“My cooking inspiration came from my Grandma, Feyintiola. I started cooking at the age of 7 and the first thing I cooked was rice and fried eggs. (We seemed to have egg with everything when I was growing up!) I was always in the kitchen with my grandma when she was cooking. Her recipes were only known to those who were present while she cooked, nothing was written down. When I moved to the UK at the age of 18 I was home sick for the first few months and what kept me going was cooking the food I ate growing up. I started to make/develop my own recipes because African food items was very limited in the UK at that time and I became creative with it. Favourite recipe: Grandma’s beans and red pepper sauce – the beans seasoned with salt, the sauce is spicy, hot and sweet, she added crayfish to the sauce for texture and flavour. We ate this with fried plantain, the combination was always amazing! And it’s the base sauce for all my cooking”.
DO NOT MISS the full exhibition which runs from 12 Jun – 15 Sep 2019