Spotlight on Annika Clinkett.
Meet the founder and CEO of Nika's Kitchen. She runs her own plant-based gluten free catering and workshops which empowers mindful decisions towards healthier choices.
Who is the brain behind Nika's Kitchen?
Annika Clinkett is the founder of Nika’s Kitchen which was established over 4 years ago.
How did this journey and passion begin?
The journey of Nika’s Kitchen spans back a few years before the official business began. It started with homemade jams and hot cacao as Xmas presents. My husband labelled them ‘Nika’s Kitchen’ and that was the beginning of a wonderful journey. After completing my culinary course and bio medicine, I had a clearer picture of how I wanted to move forward with my business.
I had the skills to manipulate and create dishes from scratch and also the understanding of how nutrition affects ones health and heal certain illnesses. I decided to ‘Explore Healthier Alternatives’ using all natural, unrefined ingredients.
I have looked at your social media platforms and have noticed that you grow some of the produce you use in your kitchen,please can you tell us more about that?
I have had my allotment for over 10 years! It’s been years of trial an error, learning from the elders on the plot until I finally completed my Horticulture qualification. I grow a variety of perennial herbs, brassica and berries which I use in my cooking. My allotment is at the Bonar Road Allotment Peckham.
Some Golgi berries, raspberries,
strawberries from Annika's allotment.
It was a wonderful experience learning and seeing for myself how she dedicates her time to looking after them. She uses all natural methods to grow and protect them from pests
So how do Nika's Kitchen reach prospective customers?
Nika’s Kitchen reaches customers via social media and word of mouth. I have ran a number of courses in the borough and Croydon which has shown participants that I know my stuff! I get a lot of my work through word of mouth! Truly blessed.
Where is Nika's Kitchen heading in the next five years?
My ambitions for the next 5 years includes having my luxury, high end vegan rum cakes in a specialist store such as Planet Organic. Other than that I tend to go with the flow. I will continue to develop courses which will be licensed and available in a number of boroughs. Maybe even a health food cafe!...The world is my oyster!
How do you manage business and family life?
I believe in a healthy work life balance. That’s the main reason for being self employed. Being a mum of 4 with another on the way...I have a pretty busy family life. That is my number 1 priority. I am blessed to be doing what I love which does make it much easier to manage.
Who influenced you the most in what you are doing to push Nika's Kitchen to the public?
That’s a tough one. It’ll be fair to say my strong female friends who were already self employed inspired me the most to pursue my dreams. They motivated me to go out there and do what I love and I am forever grateful for their support. My family, especially my husband has had a huge impact on my success. He keeps me balanced and reassured me when I am in doubt. There is nothing better than a supporting partner when you are setting up your own business!
What do you do when you are not managing business and family?
At the moment frequent the allotment! It’s one of my favourite pastimes. I find it so therapeutic being surrounded with vegetation. Bring a natural Earth baby; I am in my element at the allotment!
What is your motto in life?
My motto in life is “be the change you want to see”