Yummy food doesn’t just happen. It takes a lot of creativity and passion to get a wonderful dining experience.
On the spotlight this month, we have a chef!! Yes, we will be feeding your eyes with some of the best cuisines in our community. Dupe enjoys sharing her culture through food from her childhood. As a passionate cook, visual artist and “hostess with the mostest”, she has merged her three loves to bring you fun and exciting dishes.
To begin, what are the five things about you, you would like people to know?
- I come from a big Nigerian family. I am the youngest of 5 ladies and I have 2 younger brothers.
- I attended the University of Guelph and graduated with an Honours Psychology degree
- I’ve always had an interest in hospitality from a young age. Back in the days, I dreamt of opening my own hotel so that I could treat my guests to unique experiences.
- In hindsight, my dining events started casually in my University dorm apartment during my 1st year of University where I would invite friends over to eat. They would bring a friend or two and eventually, acquaintances would remember me because they had eaten at my place before 😀
- I believe in being kind to others but more importantly being kind to yourself.
What does it mean to live a life that is meaningful?
To me, living a life that is meaningful is being purposeful in how you live. Having a vision and letting this as well as your values guide your actions and choices daily.
You are the founder of Aunty Dupe’s Buka. What inspired you to start this and what’s your goal with Aunty Dupe’s Buka.
Aunty Dupe’s Buka is a title I coined playfully 4 years ago when I moved to Edmonton and would cook Nigerian food (often with a twist) and display it on social media with the hashtag #auntydupesbuka. After some time, friends would call me by this hashtag and would ask to come over to try the dishes I’ve been posting. I did not think much of the name until my husband Seun encouraged me to take it seriously and build on it earlier this year. Knowing how delicious Nigerian food is and how challenging it is to access it here in Edmonton, Seun and I decided to create an initiative where Nigerian food is not only available but also brought into the spotlight in order to reach the majority of Edmontonians. We came up with our “Travelling Dishes from Aunty Dupe’s Buka” brand to introduce Nigerian food to the mass and kick-started it with our 2019 summer-long food tasting tour. Nigerian food is delicious and has great potential.
The goal of Travelling Dishes is to bring Nigerian food out of its usual community and to share it with the rest of the world. We hope that one day people will say “let’s do Nigerian food tonight” the way they would for popular ethnic cuisines such as Chinese, Mexican or Indian.
What are the challenges you’ve faced so far in business?
It takes hard work, mental and physical energy to keep going. Self-care is a must. I have to remember to take time off whenever I can.
Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years or hope to have accomplished by then?
That Travelling Dishes will be a household name and that many Canadians would’ve been fed by Aunty Dupe’s Buka.
What skills will you like to master and what advice will you give someone willing to develop or learn a skill?
The art of persuasion ;). Many skills these days can be found on the internet! with patience, commitment and great research skills, I believe anyone can learn anything. I would advise them to follow people who have mastered the skills they are looking to learn and follow in their footsteps. Although the internet is bursting with information, it could also be misleading. I would advise that they have a main teacher but pick certain aspects that may be relevant from others.
When people look at you, what do you think they see or think?
Hopefully a down to earth, enthusiastic person.
THIS OR THAT
To learn more about Dupe visit her website and social media pages.
Website: Travelling Dishes