Kavachi Ukegbu and the art of fufu
This year started on a high for Houston-born Kavachi Ukegbu, a third-generation chef-restauranteur with deep roots in her Nigerian culinary heritage. The “good blessings,” as she called them, came in the guise of a $10,000 grant “to do our Art of Fufu show for the city of Houston.”
It is clearly a well-deserved windfall. The dynamic 36-year-old has been working with commitment for more than ten years in diverse ways and with a big-picture vision, which is two-fold. On the one hand, to “spread the love of fufu” to the world. On the other, to create a culinary melting pot, as in facilitating cross-cultural understanding and unity through food.
“For example, I don’t know what is going on in my Jewish neighbor’s kitchen,” she says.
Or take the humble tomato. “For the Mexican, this may become salsa. For the Italian, a sauce. For the Nigerian, a stew. I don’t know of a better way for people to share their cultures than through food. People say the U.S. is a melting pot, but what about us melding together?”
Read my full article Kavachi Ukegbu Takes Fufu Tour to the Houston Community and Beyond in Cuisine Noir magazine.