Aftrad Village Kitchen produces quality African food products based on traditional Ghanaian recipes, which are easily accessible, readily available and convenient to use. Our ethos is based on use of natural ingredients, tradition and authentic taste.
The company was born out of the need to recreate Ghanaian traditions and to continue to enjoy the flavours of Ghana which I was accustomed to whilst growing up. Its aim is to be a community which has their identity rooted in their food traditions. It’s also aims to be a hub of information and resources where the new generation of Africans in the diaspora can tap into to reconnect with their identity.
How did you come up with the idea for the company?
Growing up in Ghana, my memories were centered around the big family dinner table in my parent’s home. Family occasions called for a cooking spree. It was a chance to cook plentifully, sit around the table eating flavour-packed food amidst laughter and merry making. There would be a spread of different Ghanaian dishes created with local ingredients and spices to achieve the rich Ghanaian flavours. This was where my knowledge of Ghanaian food ingredients was accumulated.
After migrating to London in 2004, I felt home sick for the rich and deep flavours of the food that filled our family home. I feared losing recipes and not being able to pass on these traditions to my new family as recipes had been handed down by word of mouth, measurements were based on eye-balling and good judgement. The fear of forgetting these traditional recipes compounded with the inaccessibility of indigenous ingredients didn’t make my home sickness any better.
Aftrad village kitchen was therefore born out of the need to recreate these traditions and continue to enjoy the flavours of Ghana which I was accustomed to whilst growing up. I want people to enjoy the rich culture no matter the geographical location and introduce this beautiful food and culture to the world.
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How has the company evolved over the last couple of years?
Aftrad Village Kitchen started off as a blog about Ghanaian food, providing the background stories, traditions and culture associated with the food and the ingredients. It then launched it’s first product in 2015 with a traditional Green Chilli sauce and Fish & Shrimp Chilli Sauce (Shito), followed by our natural spice blends.
We now stock traditional pantry staples like Gari (Cassava Flakes), Waakye Leave (Sorghum leaves), Muskmelon Seeds and Aridan Fruit. We are also collaborating with other Ghanaian brands to supply other traditional foods such as Ghana Chocolate.
What can we hope to see from Aftrad Village Kitchen in the future?
I am hoping that this provision for Africans in the diaspora will transcend into the communities they live in and there will be an interest and take up of African traditional foods and recipes worldwide.
In the next couple of years, I hope to see Aftrad Village Kitchen brands on supermarket shelves across U.K and worldwide. I believe that we should all be able to enjoy the rich culture no matter the geographical location and to introduce this beautiful food and culture to the world.