Meet the Chefs- Jollof Wars Edition

Jollof Wars is around the corner. Black Foodie and Supafrik joined forces to really explore this age old African rivalry. Who makes the best jollof? Once we put out the flyer- the buzz was insane! Everybody had an opinion and of course everyone was convinced that their country made the best jollof! Just one look through the memes on instagram and comments and you’ll see this is going to be the the fiercest food battle yet. But although we’ve  joked about the competition, Jollof Wars is  also a celebration.  It’s an event that aims to spotlight the amazing African culinary talent and food businesses in our city. So lets meet the  dope chefs that are about to heat up the competition and  the African food scene in Toronto.
Meet  Emikele (Meso Eats)
Team Nigeria 
emikele
Emikele is the talented chef behind Meso Eats, a company that is set to change the way African food is experienced in Toronto.  Emikele and her business partner Richard, noticed that there was a big gap that existed in the food market.  They both have a passion for food and health but realized that there weren’t many options for healthy African food delivery. Meso Eats provides healthy delicious African food at your door without the hassle!  Meso Eats will be holding it down for Nigeria in the Jollof Wars and we checked in to get their perspective.
What makes Nigerian jollof special?
Jollof rice has an aroma that’s very distinct and very yummy. You can smell Jollof rice from miles away. It has a great taste when cooked well, which makes Jollof irresistible.The ingredients for Jollof rice are very basic and there lies its awesomeness. Any extras or tweaks might kill the flavor Jollof rice is meant to have. Jollof’s color, texture and taste makes it stand out to any other dish. We think Nigerians will win the Jollof wars. In as much as it’s hard to believe Jollof did not originate from Nigeria; it originated from Senegal (shout out to them), Jollof rice is a staple food in Nigeria, compared to any other country. Because of this, over the years, Nigerians have mastered the what and hows to make the perfect jollof rice.
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Meet Chef Kwame 
Team Ghana
Chef Kwame

He is the restauranteur behind the Golden Stool Restaurant. He’s been cooking for 20 years and just one scroll through his page and you can see his passion for food.  Chef Kwame will be repping for all the Ghanians at Jollof Wars. We connected with him to find out what inspires his restaurant  and his thoughts on Ghanian jollof. 

I noticed that there wasn’t enough African restaurants that paid attention to plating as well as decor and ambiance. So I said I would create one and fuse it with others like Caribbean and continental.

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What makes Ghanian jollof great?

Ghana’s main rice dish is Jollof rice of-course. Our Jollof starts with a hour long red stew that can’t be rushed, before adding the rice. It’s moist and very tasty. It’s probably the most recognizable Ghanaian dish. We feel it’s second to none. I know the judges are there to chose taste above all criteria’s so it’s Ghana Jollof!

Meet Chef Ami

Team Senegal 

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Ami is the Senegalese chef behind the catering company, Ami Food.  She will be representing Senegal in the Jollof wars Battle.  Ami was inspired to start cooking while she was a student in Japan. She began hosting dinner parties to showcase African food and it was a hit!  After a successful launch of a caterin
g service in Tokyo while teachng cooking classes as well- she took her business to Toronto.  When asked about Senegalese jollof she explained,

Jollof rice is the Senegalese national dish. “Jollof” is a region in Senegal where the recipe originated from. We call this dish “Thieb bou dieune” which literally means “rice and fish”. According to the legend, “Thieb bou dieune” was created, or at least made famous by a renowned cook of the nineteenth century named Penda Mbaye. It is said that one day, she had the genius idea of mashing small tomatoes to add in her dish and it became very famous throughout Senegal. Until now, we call the dish “Thieb bou dieune Penda Mbaye”. Our Jollof Rice is usually made with big fresh fish such as grouper and a variety of fresh vegetables. We also use some typical Senegalese ingredients such as “Gedj” ( dried salted fish ) and Yet (a type of dried mollusk) . We have two versions of Rice and Fish, “Thieb bou Honk” meaning “the red rice” which is made with a tomato sauce and “Thieb bou Wekh” “the white rice” which is famous for its caramelized onions. I have a saying that in Senegal, a Thieb is always a Thieb, but 100 women throughout the country will make 100 different dishes inspired by their own background, each one unique and good in its own way .
Meet Ife and Ore
Team Puff puff, meat pies and chin chin lol
feldos
 Our final spotlight is on Ife and Ore, cofounders of the dope Nigerian snack company,Feldos. If you’ve ever had Nigerian chin chin or puff puff – you will LOVE Feldos!  Ife and her business savvy sister started Feldos after learning from the skills from their mother.  Ife explains that Nigerian snack are a must have!
Nigerian snacks should be on everyone’s radar because they are just so yummy. Who doesn’t love yummy snacks?! Which snack is your favourite? – it’s hard to choose one but we’d say puff puff.
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They make it easy for everyone from students to folks hosting events, weddings, and more to experience a delicious taste of Nigeria.
Dont miss out on this culinary event, get your tickets here: http://jollofwars.eventbrite.com/?aff=blackfoodie

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