Sunday 30 June 2019

Vegan Nigerian Japanese Fusion Cooking | Sushi, Gyoza and More!

Happy Sunday! Hope you are well and truly enjoying the glorious summer weather.

Ahead of our vegan Nigerian Japanese supper club on July 16th, my collaborator Keiko (a.k.a. 'Sushi Queen') and I spent Friday experimenting with a few fusion dishes. Our guests are in for a real treat! If you haven't booked your ticket yet, you can do so via Eventbrite.

In this week's video, check out the behind-the-scenes of our recipe and menu development process. Some pictures further down for you to check out too. Can you guess how we've fused Nigerian and Japanese ingredients??

Saturday 29 June 2019

Crispy Baked Carrot Chips

As a self-confessed chips aficionado, I can freely admit that these carrot chips are nowhere on the same level as classic potato chips/fries. What can truly compare? And yet, they are incredibly delicious and do hit the spot if you've got a craving for something crisp and satisfying. I made these because I had a surplus of carrots in my fridge and didn't fancy making a soup or a salad at the time.

These are best served piping hot, straight out of the oven, with a spicy dipping sauce. Mmm. Garnish with a bit of chopped parsley and you've got yourself a visually stunning snack or appetiser.

(serves 2)
- 8 carrots (chopped into batons)
- 3 tbsp corn flour
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
- 1 tsp crushed chilli flakes
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp sunflower or melted coconut oil
- Fresh parsley (finely chopped)

Combine all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl and stir until the carrot chips are evenly coated.

Spread the chips out in a single layer on a lined baking tray.

Bake at 180 degrees Celsius for 35 minutes, turning the chips over halfway through the cooking time.

Serve hot with a garnish of fresh parsley and your favourite dips and sauces.

Thursday 13 June 2019

Vegan Nigerian-Japanese Supper Club

The excitement is real!

Nigeria meets Japan in the next instalment of pop-up dinners. I've teamed up with Keiko of Sushi Queen London to create a unique and exciting fusion dining experience. We'll be joining forces to develop a specially curated menu that showcases the very best of Nigerian and Japanese flavours and ingredients.

Join us on Tuesday July 16th, 6.30pm at Black Cat Cafe.

Book tickets here.

Sunday 9 June 2019

Top 5 Vegan Brands for Afro Hair | Afro Hair & Beauty Live 2019

This year's Afro Hair & Beauty Live show took place over the gloriously sunny spring bank holiday. 120 exhibitors showcased their products at the Business Design Centre in Islington, and thousands of visitors showed up to support what I can truly describe as a successful show.

Walking around the show, I was struck by the number of brands embracing a vegan ethos. These days, it makes complete sense for hair and beauty businesses to move in this direction. Demand for cruelty-free, natural and ethical products is at an all-time high, people are generally more conscious and eager to support businesses that actually care about animal welfare and the environment. Companies win out financially, customers are satisfied, animals are spared from's nothing but positive when you really think about it.

In my highlight video, you'll see that the show was an absolute feast for the senses. I managed to touch base with a few impressive vegan-friendly hair and beauty brands. Some of my favourites are also featured in the little guide I've put together down below. If, like me, you've ever struggled with finding vegan products that work well and nourish your afro hair, then this guide to the top 5 brands should be a lifesaver.

Top 5 Vegan-Friendly Brands for Afro Hair

1. SuperFoodLx
Cherry and Paula Francis are the UK based nurse and nutritionist mother and daughter team behind SuperFoodLx. They specialise in pure blend dietary supplements and nutrient dense vegan hair and skin treatments. Their selection of CBD oil products help support your mood and stress-levels in order to prevent hair loss, and their natural blends are formulated to accelerate and thicken your hair growth. Look out for their much loved Kelp & Spirulina Hair growth vitamins, Hair Skin & Nail Oil, Illuminism Detox Balm, Intelligence Hydrating Hair Cream, Quinoa Protein Conditioner, CBD oil and butter.

2. Afrocenchix
This brand absolutely had to make it on to the list. Their gorgeous products are all vegan, natural and organic, designed to make caring for natural hair as simple and stress-free as possible. Check out their sulphate-free shampoo, and moisturising hair cream. They are also the first natural hair brand to be stocked at WholeFoods, so if you happen to pass by there, be sure to support them.

3. Curls
The Green Collection by Curls is 100% vegan and specially formulated to promote healthier, stronger hair. The range includes a green tea hair rinse to restore your hair's pH balance, a moisturising avocado hair styling mousse, bamboo protein treatment to strengthen damaged hair, a sea kelp vitamin-infused shampoo and a sea kelp/cucumber hair mask to promote hair growth.

Multi-award winning France-based company ACTIVILONG have been caring for curly and frizzy hair since 1983. This year they introduced ACTIKIDS for vegan kids. 97% natural origin, neutral ph, no silicon / no SLS / no PEG / no mineral oil. Enriched with mango butter and sweet almond oil to meet the specific needs of children's delicate hair. The range consists of conditioning shampoo, conditioner, co wash, detangling spray, curl cream and defining jelly.

Catering for natural curls and coils, As I Am recently launched an entirely vegan collection called Dry + Itchy to help fight dandruff and prevent itchy scalp. It is formulated with olive oil, tea tree oil, coconut oil, linseed, aloe vera and other natural products to soothe and repair the scalp. Their leave-in conditioner, curling jelly, twist defining cream and hair oils are also all vegan-friendly.

You might also like my post on how to make a vegan deep conditioner for natural afro hair.

Saturday 1 June 2019

Spicy Mango Salad (Mango Ceviche)

Conpasion Peru is a London-based social enterprise run by two sisters, Joana and Meli. They led a cooking class a week after mine, as part of the Vegan Chefs of Colour series by community organisation, Life After Hummus. One of the recipes that they shared was a stunning mango ceviche. 

I've been meaning to experiment with savoury mango dishes for a while, but somehow never got round to it. Whenever I wanted to, I'd pick up some mangoes from my farmers' market and proceed to eat them as they are, not wanting to sacrifice the pure pleasure of a juicy, ripe mango. It wasn't until I tasted Joana and Meli's mango ceviche that I realised what I'd been missing!

I've tweaked this recipe, using ingredients that were more readily available to me at the time. Instead of Peruvian chillis, for instance, I've used scotch bonnet. You can also use lemon juice and zest in place of the lime. Red onions make the dish more visually appealing, but you can of course opt for white onions.

This mango salad is perfect as a side dish, especially during the summer months. The sweet, spicy and sour notes are perfectly balanced, adding a touch of freshness to any main meal.

(serves 1-2)
- 1 ripe and firm mango
- 1/2 red onion (thinly sliced)
- handful coriander (roughly chopped)
- 4 tbsp lime juice
- lime zest
- 1/2 small scotch bonnet pepper (finely chopped) or 1 tbsp chilli flakes
- pinch of salt

Toss all the ingredients together in a large salad bowl. It can be served at room temperature but I personally think it tastes better chilled, so if you need to serve it immediately try and refrigerate your ingredients beforehand. Otherwise, pop it in the fridge until you are ready to eat it.

Are you a fan of mango in savoury dishes? Leave a comment down below.

Other recipes you might like:
- Mango Cream Dessert
- Mango Shortbread Cookies
- Broccoli and Sweet Potato with Chilli Coconut Dressing