Do you ever fancy trying the world, perhaps a delicious gourmet style food from your favorite part of Africa? If you are, and are looking for a quiet night or day in with some delicious authentic African cuisine, look no further.
Chop Plentii is an online platform that makes “African food accessible to the world by delivering authentic African food to people, one community at a time”.
Nigerian born, Oakland resident, Baba Afolabi is the founder of this innovative fresh startup.
Afolabi’s choice of branding his online business “Chop Plentii” in Pidgin style – an English-based vernacular spoken in a lingua franca across Nigeria – is expressive of his cultural background.
When asked the meaning behind the name, Afolabi explains, “In Pidgin English ‘chop’ means ‘eat’ and ‘plentii’ is our creative way of spelling ‘plenty’, the state of having enough of the things that make life good and easy. Therefore, Chop Plentii means ‘eat enough African food to have a good and easy life!’”
And a “good” and “easy” life sounds like what we should have.
Africans and the Culture of Food
In the African saying: “happiness is as good as food”.
Broadly speaking, in the African culture, food is an integral part of everyday living. A fundamental part that makes the African cultural experience rich, food is generally regarded as a strengthener of social bonds – and if offered sincerely from the heart, food makes life sweeter than words.
That being so, while living in places abroad where the varieties of African cuisine are generally not accessible – outside the intimate kitchen – the tendency to miss what was once an integral part of everyday living is natural.
As an African living in the diaspora, Afolabi says he can relate with the difficulties: “I know it’s hard to eat our traditional food on a consistent basis or share it with our friends. As a result of the difficulty, we’ve settled with an alternative. African food is underrepresented in the restaurant marketplace. Our goal is to make eating authentic African food an option for all by making it convenient to eat at home with friends and family.”
Appropriately, Chop Plentii’s vision serves as a link between the diaspora and cultural processing – a means of retaining cultural identity.
But it’s not just about the African diaspora; Chop Plentii arrives with the West’s evermore-emerging interest in African culture and African cuisine. There’s an interest in exploring and taking part in the continent’s diverse food culture; thus, an opportunity to deliver, with a point of click order, to the apparent interest and function as a cultural promoter by making African cuisine accessible to a wider audience – a fast way to introduce and share with the world Africa’s rich culture.
All in all, Baba promises that by recreating the cultural experience while maintaining aspects of authenticity, Chop Plentii will be the easiest way to order fresh authentic African food, and in that way become a means for some to retain aspects of cultural identity while for others it will serve as a platform to experience something new.
Chop Plentii’s online door is now open and ready to serve and share the varieties and commonalities in African cuisine; so you can do away with searching for African restaurants or placing phone orders. With their kitchen open 24 hours, whenever you’re in the mood for African cuisine they will cook the food the same day you place your order and deliver it to your doorstep, chilled and fresh.
Currently, they are serving Nigerian and some Ghanaian food in the East Bay, South Bay and San Francisco Peninsula Area of California; however, they have plans to expand and serve food from the entire continent to various parts of the world in the near future.
Try Chop Plentti – and choose to “eat enough African food to have a good and easy life.”