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Museum Late: Spice it Up - Flavours from Africa and the Caribbean

​​J​oin us for an electrifying museum late ​c​o-curated with the culinary brilliance of a London-based food & drink writer Melissa Thompson.  Taking you on an adventure of tantalising flavours and intricate histories from ​the ​Africa​n continent​ and the Caribbean

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Taking a cue from Thompson’s cookbook, Motherland: A Jamaican Cookbook (2022), Museum of the Home is hosting a special Late, a chance to explore delicious flavours, hear from talented chefs and artists, and experience music and performances.

The evening will delve into the stories, triumphs and tribulations of African and Caribbean communities - featuring leading chefs, artists​, ​self-made producers and entrepreneurs.  

History will meet contemporary expression in our evening programme, where pioneering cultural thinker Michael McMillan will be hosting a workshop and talk on I Miss My Mum's Cookin' installation (2023). And young artists and trailblazers such as Fungai Marima, Tanaka Mazivanhanga and other special guests will share their creative processes and ideas of ‘home’ through our Artist Takeover session.

Join us to recognise the talents and determination that define African and Caribbean cultures. We hope this evening will stir minds and hearts, leaving you inspired and connected to the spirit of these vibrant communities. 

What's On

A Hand Up | Talk

6.45pm – 7.30pm

Taking inspiration from community leader and founder of Breadline, Marie Henry, A Hand Up is a Home Truths panel discussion aimed at giving sustainable tips on how to combat the current cost of living - with key ideas on budgeting and food growing practices.  

This talk will highlight the importance of everyone having access to the benefits of affordable, healthy, and sustainable food as part of our Campaign for Change, our commitment to champion social justice issues.


Marie Henry

Marie Henry is the founder of Breadline London, a constituted community group that is dedicated to supporting families and individuals out of the cycle of poverty, debt and hardship. With her passion and belief that giving people tools to sustain themselves is better than donating and giving welfare, Breadline’s ethos centres on the idea of giving a “A Hand Up” rather than a handout, whereby they offer free workshops and training on finance management and sustainability practices. The organisation offers four main services: Insight into Effective Budgeting, Healthy Eating and Planning, Financial Education, and Micro-business Development.

Inspired by her own family’s principles of community and growing up in a household whose doors were open to those in need, Marie set up Breadline London in 2016 to pass down the legacy to her own children, while also aiming to inspire confidence, independence and financial stabilities to families around and beyond Tottenham - focussing on the idea that Community + Dignity + Security = Progress!

Paulette Henry

Photo by Fiona McAllister

Paulette Henry is the founder of Black Rootz, a Black- led horticultural centre, based in Haringey. Black Rootz is founded upon a multigenerational food growing initiative for all communities, with an emphasises on inspiring those of African and Caribbean heritage to step out of the hobbyist mentality of growing food but to develop it as means to collective wealth and generate a process that allows them to invest in their own health and the environment!

Paulette comes from a family of growers, her grandfather was a commercial farmer in Jamaica and when her family moved to the UK, her father continued the legacy and grew food for his family. Growing up in this environment led to Paulette’s own interests in the land which she later developed in 2008 taking up training with Living Under One Sun, while also setting up her own space, Tourmaline Urban Gardens.

By 2012, Paulette had taken on a Master Gardeners course and connected with an incredible mentor who, to this day, serves as inspiration for how food growing is a lifestyle and attainable in London. Paulette has supported many other food growing groups and was previously connected with the growing space and people at Wolves Lane before setting up Black Rootz.


Sandra Salazar

Photo by Rakin and Futerra Climate Heroes Campaign

Sandra Salazar is the founder of an award-winning women led non-profit organisation, GoGrowWithLove C.I.C. She is a come-unity horticulturalist and farmer. Sandra loves to grow food and teach practical food growing skills development, land, food & seed sovereignty to children, women, families and adults.

She shares her traditional land skills in nurseries, schools, home education groups, allotments, housing estates and community projects.

Sandra is the lead Soil Sistar at Women Leading With The Land Project, a grass roots Afro-ecological project in London, that teaches women of African Caribbean heritage traditional skills in land care & cultivation, food growing and enterprise.

Hannah Walton

Hannah Walton is the Head of Membership at KERB, a renowned organisation dedicated to supporting independent street food businesses. With a passion for both food and environmental sustainability, she has carved a distinct path in her career, whilst making effective impact. Hannah stands as a champion for the planet, exemplifying her commitment through her leadership in KERB's sustainability committee. Her passion for nurturing a more sustainable food landscape is evident in her advocacy for locally sourced produce and her dedication to breaking down barriers that hinder access to decent, high-quality food for all. Hannah's mission extends beyond advocacy; she actively implements strategies to reduce waste, embraces a culture of reusing resources, and champions recycling initiatives within the organisation and the wider community.

Home is Where the Hearth Is | Talk 

8.15pm – 9pm

The kitchen is often the beating heart of any home; we are drawn to the place where food is cooked. The smells and sounds root themselves into our memories so that a faint aroma can transport us to a different place; to people or to a time that may be long gone.

In this discussion, writer and chef Melissa Thompson will lead a panel on the importance of food as a connector, rooting us to a place, as well as a means of transporting us through time and space. Alongside fellow chefs, Marie Mitchell, Denai Moore and curator Michael McMillan, they will shed light on their culinary journeys, explore the cultural significance of their creations, and share the foods that make them think of home.

This is a special curated talk by Melissa Thompson. Guests will receive a bowl of food.


Melissa Thompson

Melissa Thompson is an award-winning food writer who has penned powerful articles on the British food industry that became focal points for important discussions around identity, diversity and inclusivity. She won the Guild of Food Writers’ Food Writing award in 2021 and was named PPA’s Food Writer of the Year in 2022.Her debut cookbook, Motherland, published in September 2022 by Bloomsbury, featured as a ‘Book of the Year’ by BBC Radio 4 Food Programme, The Observer New Review Books of the Year, The Telegraph Top Cookbooks of 2022, Delicious Magazine’s Books of the Year, The Financial Times Top 3 Cookbooks of 2022 and many more. Alongside recipes, it explores the evolution of Jamaican food, from the island’s indigenous population to today.

Melissa is a panellist on Radio 4’s The Kitchen Cabinet, has appeared on Saturday Kitchen, BBC’s Travel Show and features regularly on Radio 4’s The Food Programme. She is also co-director of the British Library’s Food Season. She is a columnist for Good Food magazine and has written articles and recipes for Guardian Feast, Conde Nast Traveller, National Geographic, Stylist, Vittles, Waitrose Weekend, Waitrose Magazine and others. She has also run demos at festivals and cookery shows including Good Food Festival and Pub in the Park.

Marie Mitchell

Photo by Christian Cassiel Photography

Marie Mitchell is a writer, chef, and mental health advocate. Having co-founded Island Social Club, the popular pop up, she will soon be launching her newsletter – Like Cooked Food, a project centred around community and kinship. Marie makes a considered effort to create space in which she can explore Caribbean culture and food with her own version of authenticity and without limits. Developing dishes by focusing on history, geography, and contemporary ingredients found in her locale and home, London, Marie is conscious of driving British Caribbean cuisine, and thus culture, forward. Outside of food, Marie is a champion of social inclusivity, sustainability, and supporting and creating spaces for self-care and mental health awareness. Marie will publish her first book, Kin: Caribbean Recipes for the Modern Kitchen, (Particular Books, Penguin), on the 6th June, which will feature a collection of recipes from the Caribbean and its diaspora, celebrating the powerful connection food gives us to our families, culture, and to places and people around the world.

Denai Moore

Denai Moore is a Jamaican-born musician and home cook. Whilst her recipes honour her early upbringing in Jamaica, Denai is inspired by her expansive travels around the world, and the vibrant, diverse London food scene. Denai’s food is heart focused and aims to inspire the modern-day adventurous cook.

Michael McMillan

Photo by Rehan Jamil

Michael McMillan, Arts.D is a London based writer, artist/curator and scholar, best known for The Front Room installation, permanently at the Museum of the Home, and the basis of his book, The Front Room: Diaspora migrant aesthetics in the Home (Lund Humphries, 2023). I Miss My Mum’s Cookin’ was nominated for a Brighton Fringe award, 2023.

Artists Takeover

Experience rhythmic beats and performances taking cue from Michael McMillan’s I Miss My Mum's Cookin' exhibition (2023), join us for this specially curated session of music, performance, and artist presentations - offering insights into their craft, while also encouraging participants to unleash their creativity.  

Music by DJ Hybrid J: 6pm-7.30pm  

Workshop led by Michael McMillan: 6.30pm-7.30pm  

Artists presentations led by Fungai Marima and Tanaka Mazivanhanga: 7.40pm-8.20pm 

Performance by Sandile Gontsana + Special Guests: 8.30pm-9.15pm 

About Joy Francis

Joy Francis (aka DJ Hybrid J) is a newly launched DJ, curator, creative entrepreneur (Words of Colour), literary inclusion activist and award-winning creative health leader. An eclectic DJ and ‘vibe creator’, Joy runs the musical gamut, from house, garage, drum & bass and hip-hop to bhangra, new wave, electronic and afro beats. Joy is a DJ alum from On the Rise Academy.

About Michael McMillan

Photo by Rehan Jamil

Michael McMillan, Arts.D is a London based writer, artist/curator and scholar, best known for The Front Room installation, permanently at the Museum of the Home, and the basis of his book, The Front Room: Diaspora migrant aesthetics in the Home (Lund Humphries, 2023). I Miss My Mum’s Cookin’ was nominated for a Brighton Fringe award, 2023.

About Fungai Marima

Fungai Marima is an artist printmaker, who is interested in archiving the gestural language of the human body’s experience, with themes within memory, identity politics, trauma and the everyday.

Marima’s work has a focus on the idea of the Body as an archive, which leads her into various medium in order to find alternative ways of communication such as performance, sound, printmaking and object making.

About Tanaka Mazivanhanga

Tanaka Mazivanhanga is a Zimbabwe- born artist based in London. She holds a BA in Architecture from Kingston School of Art and an MA in Printmaking from Camberwell College of Art. She is an award-winning artist who has exhibited nationally and internationally, including the StART x MMG Emerging Prize 2022 and the Slaughterhouse Print Studio Award. She has an upcoming solo show with ASC Gallery in 2024. 

About Sandile Gontsana

Sandile Gontsana is a jazz vocalist from Cape Town. His musical journey began at church as part of the choir and worship team, and later in school choirs. His love for Jazz led him to enrol at the University of Cape Town, College of Music where he graduated with a Post Graduate Diploma in Jazz (Singing) Cum Laude.

Sandile has worked and performed with some of South Africa’s greats; Sibongile Khumalo, McCoy Mrubata, Standard Bank National Youth Jazz Band, Swazi Dlamini and Tshepo Mngoma. In 2013 Sandile left for Australia to be part of THE AMAZING Disney’s The Lion King Musical (Australian Tour) where he was an Ensemble Singer for 3 years. He is currently based in the London where he is part of the WEST END PRODUCTION of The Lion King.

Ticket options

General entry (late access to the museum, artists takeover and A Hand Up talk)

General entry + Home is where the Hearth is talk with Melissa Thompson

Concession tickets are available for both ticket types

Friday 7 June 2024



Museum of the Home, 136 Kingsland Road, London E2 8EA

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