An African Picnic Challenge

In the past few weeks, I’ve been blogging quite a bit about picnics, and as I researched easy food to eat outdoors, I was struck by how few African-inspired dishes I could find on offer, which did not have to be served hot to be delicious. I turned to an expert, a talented cook who, like us, takes the traditional and presents it anew in a contemporary fashion. She believes in food that looks good and tastes fabulous.

Tupelo Green - African Salad

Tupelo and Green – African Salad

Nky Iweka is the author of two cookbooks: ‘The Modern Nigerian Cookbook – Nigerian food with a twist (currently under consideration with publishers) and ‘Quintessentially Efik Recipes – Foods of Nigeria’ (published in 2014). Nky is the Executive Creative Chef at Tupelo & Green, an Executive Culinary Services firm which offers consultancy, educational and capacity-building skills for catering staff of blue-chip clients and private clients. Key to their ethos is ensuring that their food (African and non-African) is delicious, healthy and beautifully presented in a manner which reflects the calibre of their clients.

This is what she says of the African picnic challenge.

When I was first approached by Toghal to put together an African picnic inspired by their beautiful fabrics, I initially thought I would go for more traditional and portable Nigerian fare such as Abacha (aka ‘African Salad’), a colourful combination of shredded cassava, stockfish, garden eggs lightly bound togther with fragrant spicy palm oil sauce. However, I soon decided to set myself a challlenge using readily-available ingredients from supermarkets.

Find out how Nky rises to the challenge of an African picnic over the next few days.

A foodie collaboration made in heaven?

A foodie collaboration made in heaven?

The napkin in the photo is our blue Tracks pattern, inspired by art created by Mbuti women from the Congo forest.

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