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June 2024 Newsletter


West African Food — Stronger Together?


What we are cooking...


🍰 for something sweet: Degue by Malicka (@theblvckgourmet)

🍸 for something to sip on: Zobo by Adùn (@getadun)


 

The regional identity of West African food


🌍 We’re starting to see a shift in how people talk about West African food


Instead of lumping it under the broad “African” label, there’s a growing recognition of the distinct and diverse flavors within the region, much like how Mediterranean cuisine is appreciated.


🌍 This regional identity boosts the global understanding of these foods


Additionally, it also helps these flavors reach grocery shelves — like how the founders of Ayo Foods are from Liberia, but they offer products inspired by the entire West African region.


🌍 This trend is paving the way for more to showcase West African heritage


It's like the collaborative spirit in music. This regional identity boosts appreciation and helps these flavors penetrate digital search, cookbooks, restaurants, products, and more.


 

Fill up your pantry with West African goodies!

 

Want to go back for seconds? Try these:


🌶️ The chef duo at Two Hommés, one of the Los Angeles Times 101 Best Restaurants, call their cuisine: "blending traditional West African flavors with bright Californian ingredients."


🌶️ Pierre Thiam, owner of the West African restaurant Teranga, emphasizes the importance of West African cuisine on the global stage, also noting its immense nutritious value.


🌶️ When Bakare opened her London-based Michelin-starred restaurant, she labeled her dishes "West African" to draw from the cuisines surrounding her Nigerian heritage.


 

Harriet Langford for Chishiru / Jodie Hinds for Akoko

Michelin’s Newest Stars!


Michelin stars are now being awarded to restaurants that feature West African cuisine, bringing even more attention and appreciation to these diverse dishes.


However, the only recognized restaurants are in the UK and France, leaving many people wanting Michelin to expand their operations to the African continent.


⭐ NEW STARS ⭐

London, UK

London, UK


⭐ STILL SHINING BRIGHT ⭐

London, UK

Paris, France

Nîmes, France


 


We just launched our own cookbook club! 📚


We want to bring more African and diaspora cookbooks into the spotlight. With a new cookbook to dive into every month — and potluck-style meetups to share the inspo — you won't want to miss out.



Can you guess what our June cookbook is?


Hint: It relates to this newsletter theme, and was deemed "Cookbook of the Year" from 6 different media companies.


 

P.S. our founder, Kiano Moju, just announced her NEW cookbook, AfriCali: Recipes From My Jikoni, which you can pre-order NOW!



 

See you in the kitchen soon!

Kiano & Jikoni Recipe Archive

If you're hungry for more, subscribe to our newsletter, and follow us on our socials!


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