“Food On The Table was born out of my passion for cooking and desire to share the love–because food is love.”
The thread of maternal love and care is innately woven throughout Yvette’s career.
“I’ve done a lot of different things and worn many hats. I have a nutrition background, and I have been a birth doula and childbirth educator, which is where I started cooking ready-to-eat meals. I found that a lot of my clients were struggling after their babies were born, especially with food and meals, so I started cooking for them.”
When her own baby was born, Yvette pivoted to spend more time with her child and turned her meal offerings into a thriving personal chef business. Then the pandemic hit, and like many food and beverage business owners, Yvette pivoted again.
“I had to think of new ways to shift my business, so I decided to offer my nutrient-dense, whole food-based, ready-to-eat meals as a weekly menu that people could order and have delivered. That is how Food On The Table was born. It really came out of knowing and understanding that people need support in this fast-paced world with so much information on food to navigate.”
The first stitches of a life deep-seated in care and food were sown by her mother, Charity, who was born in Ghana, West Africa and immigrated to Canada with Yvette’s father, Dan.
“I watched my mom cook when I was growing up, and she was an amazing cook. Our house was a hub for people. I grew up in Calgary, and we had a big Ghanaian community there. My parents hosted a lot of gatherings and there would always be so much food. We ate a lot of traditional Ghanaian meals growing up, but my mom also liked to explore other cultural cuisines.
And my mom’s love language was food, so if there was ever trauma or tragedy for our friends and family, that’s what she would do–nurture them with food.”
Yvette continues to nurture people with dishes inspired by her mother’s cooking.
“My most popular dish at the farmers’ market is what I call my Ghanaian Lentil Peanut Veggie Stew, and people are so curious to try it. That’s the number one thing people want to try, and then I get to share and talk about my cultural foods and what they mean to me. We use lots of peanuts, tomatoes, and ginger in our food.”
In all of my dishes, I offer quality ingredients, including ancient grains, whole foods, bone broths, and options from gluten-free to vegan.”
Also like her mother, Yvette is excited about trying and sharing other cultural cuisines. She sees an opportunity to incorporate other brand products into her meals to support local and connect people through food.
“I make a version of butter chicken, but I’m not from India, and I want to share my South Asian-inspired dishes in an authentic way. I discovered the Indian Pantry, so I recipe-tested with their Garam Masala and it completely elevated my dish. I celebrate their care and love for their cultural spices, and incorporate them into my food.
I also partner with and incorporate Mumgry’s peanut butter, Kula Foods’s delicious BBQ sauce, Shorba Bone Broth’s organic broth, and ALLFAT’s grass-fed beef tallow. I am excited to share all sorts of quality products, but my focus is to highlight and support BIPOC brands.
Both within her own business and alongside other Black and BIPOC business owners, Yvette is excited for a future of connection through food.
“The other day I was in the commissary kitchen I work at, and it’s a small kitchen but many of us vendors were there on this one day. From Mexican to Turkish to Ghanaian, there were so many different cultures represented. Everyone was speaking their language and making their food. It’s such a joy to see people celebrate their heritage through food, and then see other people learn about different cultures through food.
My hope is that my food sparks conversation and curiosity into other cultures, different perspectives, and ways of being. Food can be so much more than nourishment–it’s a connector that invites us all to come together.”
Find Yvette and Food On The Table at Riley Park and Hastings Park Farmers’ Market this season! You can also order her delicious and diverse, ready-to-eat meals online at foodonthetable.ca. They are currently delivering from West Vancouver to Surrey.