Plant-based north London restaurant packs healthy flavour punch

By Winnie Adeyemi, Director, AFRICA: Seen & Heard

Throughout Black History Month 2022, the theme for which is Time for Change: Action not Words, AFRICA: Seen & Heard and the Sustainable Restaurant Association have gathered the stories of Black-British foodservice providers across the country.

Reducing and repurposing food waste, ensuring carbon neutrality and feeding communities well were found to be within the DNA of their food heritages as much as their brand missions.

We shine a spotlight on some of the business owners interviewed. Their unique insights provide the Food Made Good Community with food for thought and commercial exploration:

Evidence suggests that those of African Caribbean heritage may be more sensitive to the impact of salt on blood pressure. This is a biological rather than a consumption issue, which increases the chance of developing high blood pressure and having a stroke.

Tanya Marie, a plant-based chef and caterer of Bajan and Jamaican heritage is preparing to move her online restaurant experience Neozentee Encore to dining premises in Palmers Green.

Whilst sharing her journey and next step, she explained the challenges the Black community face to eat well. She has reduced salt across her menu to ensure customers will eat healthily:

“We don’t need as much salt or the typical West Indian/African seasoning (products which can contain a lot of additives and trans fats). You don’t need to rely on these seasonings if you use herbs and fresh ingredients. We don’t need as much salt as we think. I create tasty dishes adding nowhere near as much salt as I grew up with and don’t rely on Everyday Seasoning.

Salt doesn’t play a role in the dishes I create. When I created my One Planet Plate dish “Plantain and Callaloo Cup”, I put salt at the end as you cannot take it away if you add too much. People are often unaware of how much salt is in everything such as stock. If you wait until the end, it is often not needed.

The salt and sugar that we intake as Black people with diabetes running heavily through us as a culture, it’s embedded.  I reduced using sugar as well as salt too.  I’ve found a way to work around it and retain the flavour.”

Neozentee proves that traditional dishes can be mindfully reinterpreted to make them healthier without losing authenticity. Plant-based diets and healthy lifestyles are increasingly prioritised. Hiring creative Black-British chefs who integrate their heritage produce expands the development and repertoire of Modern British cuisine.

You can check out the sustainability stories of three more Black British foodservice providers here.

Eat Genesis: 60 Aldermans Hill, London N13 4PP

For November 2022 opening updates, email [email protected]

Instagram: @neozentee @eatgenesis

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