Ozoz Sokoh – the Kitchen Butterfly – is a Nigerian food explorer, culinary anthropologist and food historian passionate about food in its entirety – cooking, eating, dreaming, researching, writing, photographing and styling it , especially on her blog, Kitchen Butterfly. A ‘Traveller by plate’, she uses foodways – the social, cultural and economic practices relating to the production and consumption of food to explore the world because ‘Food is more than eating’.
You’ll find my artist’s portfolio here – The Art of Kitchen Butterfly.
For the first 9 years of my life, I hated food and really loved sugar. I redefined the concept of food storage and preservation as a child- often going to bed with my dinner in my mouth (which always seemed to miraculously reappear behind the deep freezer!). Ask my mum who can’t believe it when she sees me these days, a little bit round.
A Brief History
‘Thank you Wimpy, you saved my life’. That’s what the headlines should have said in the summer of ’85 when my dad took my older sis and I to Edinburgh. We went to the festival which rocked. We saw the marches, walked in the gardens and caught a glimpse of the floral clock, all on the fateful day when…… hunger struck!I was 9 years old and had never experienced a day’s hunger in my entire life.
This girl suddenly found herself ravenous and starving so that when we arrived at Wimpy, I literally fell on my kid’s meal – something or the other with fries, can’t remember exactly what it was but I ate it and washed it down with Miranda. My dad, in shock watched me for the first time in his entire life, eat my way through a meal with neither threat nor tears! In delight, bless his soul, he asked if I wanted a second meal and having savoured the flavour of junk food, I said yes! yes!! yes!!! and I ate it ALL up. And then I cried.
Full and over-fed to the point of pain. Never before had that happened. My little stomach had been stretched beyond its bounds….and it hasn’t looked back since. Poor thing, ….. sometimes.
Why the name, Kitchen Butterfly?
I’ve evolved in distinct phases – like the butterfly. I am flighty. I am constantly seeking…. content with my life but still in search of more. I am big on combinations – cross-pollinating and cross-fertilisation. I’m big on flavours and textures. I love pretty. And colour.
Yet another food blog?
Yes, to add to the millions in the blogosphere! Well, I have too many notebooks. Too many recipes in my head. Uncooked, unloved, unshared. I can’t go on like this. When I discovered that there were other food fiends out there like me, who oohed and ahhed and poohed (over their goofs and gaffes), I realised I didn’t have to stay pen-glued-to-paper. Actually, even though I’d been reading blogs for a couple of years, it never occurred to me to start my own.
- I’m a born foodie… well, forget the 9-year post birth period – they don’t count
- I’m always up to and in the middle of something
- When he was 2 years old, I thought my son was a natural cook because he was addicted to spoons, till I read Talent is overrated
- My daughters love to cook with me – sometimes they don’t eat, can’t eat the things we’ve made like my granary pizza…. sorry no pictures, there’s no need to repeat the miserable feat
- I dispel the myth that all Black people can dance
- I’m constantly craving something
- I hate to throw things away. I’m a proud collector of many a thing – buttons, cookbooks and other ‘things’
- I love to shop. I’d rather shop for veg than shoes
- I want to teach and lecture about food, about West African food and drink history, and more
- Yes, food shopping over all else, except mason jars
- You’ll find me headed to the ‘sales aisles’ when I go into a home shop
- I almost always have a pen(cil) and notebook with me
- I vacillate between absolute organized chaos (my children used to be my excuse) and compulsive cleaning
- I love combinations – food, talk and photos, what more could a girl wish for? Don’t ask me or I’ll tell
- I love to take bite-sized slices of life and grow in leaps and bounds
- Sometimes I eat a whole dinner standing up, before dinnertime
- I am good at improvising
- I make a recipe as is…. on very rare occasion
- I am addicted to certain herbs and spices – cilantro, green cardamom are two
- I love travel and discovering new things
- I feel really blessed to be who I am and have all I have
- I want more, but I’m thankful to God for today
All Rights Reserved: All photographs and written content are the property of Kitchen Butterfly © 2009 – 2021, Ozoz Sokoh, unless otherwise stated.
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