A week ago today (29th November 2016), I attended the #AfricanFood event hosted by Pop Up Africa and Do it Now Now (click on each link to find out more about who they are and what they do).
The event brought together a range of passionate foodies who are making their mark in the African food scene here in the UK. From foodpreneurs to bloggers, journalists and cookbook authors to TV chefs. Essentially, a glorious melting pot of like-minded creatives who want to usher our diverse African cuisines into mainstream consciousness.
And boy, was I glad to be in that room. I got to hear the unique experiences of others in the field and gathered heaps of inspiration. I left feeling encouraged and excited about the new year - both in terms of the positive direction that African cuisine in general seems to be moving, and also in terms of my own personal projects, goals and vision for The Vegan Nigerian. Once in a while, it's necessary to pause and take stock of the direction you're heading in, and this event was certainly a catalyst to that end.
The evening began with an ice-breaker where members of the audience split into teams of eight to answer African food related questions. This was followed by the main part of the event: a panel discussion to discuss a series of questions pertaining to the current state and future of African food. The third part of the evening consisted of food entrepreneurs giving short presentations about their businesses.
A few things I took away from the various discussions on the night: the importance of perseverance and consistency; the need for us to support and build each other up within this growing community; the importance of taking pride in what we do.
Below is a video with extended highlights from the evening. Hope you enjoy and take something away from it!