The art of braai is one of the basic elements in nature. it can bring back memories, and deep connections, and it has the strength to distract from hostile situations, turning darkness into light.
Back in Nambia, Raymond had no electricity, he relied only on fire. The fire was a dear friend to Raymond and his family, as it regularly sat between them after a hard days work. The fire witnessed the storytelling, the laughter, songs and the smell of food – In return, it offered warmth and comfort.
Raymond arrived in the UK as a refugee in 2014 fuelled by his families teachings.
“The invaluable legacy my mum left me, is the will to learn every day. She’s a teacher and she gave me a solid education inspiring my love for books and hunger for knowledge. When you stop learning, you start dying and I am so in love with life!”
“It wasn’t easy in the beginning, when I first arrived in London. They sent me to Liverpool, then Bolton, but I just knew London was the place for me. I knew London could help me find and chase my dreams. I worked very hard and made all I could to return to London. Today I am still ready to sacrifice anything, time, comfort, resources, whatever it takes to make a dream come true.”
“I chose to barbecue because the fire brings me back home, to the coziness and safety of my family. Barbecue has a deep bond with South Africa strongly influencing Namibia until its independence in 1990. I embrace the culture of barbecue, and its meanings of sharing, coming together and uniting around food and stories.”
Raymond’s barbecued food is authentic and perfectly cooked. The fire really is his friend to his attitude and to his work.
Raymond applied to the TERN competition that MM launched in collaboration last summer. Raymond is one of the three winners, and he proudly showcases his incredible barbecued meat and South African recipes.
Raymond now runs his own food shack within the Mercato Metropolitano market sharing his positivity and love for life with all he meets.
You can find Raymond’s shack ‘The South African Grill’ in our Elephant & Castle market in Warehouse 2. Mercato is extremely proud to partner with such a talented and positive human being like Raymond. If everyone had the attitude of Raymond Amadhila, we truly believe the world would be a happier place.
MM is inviting people, companies and policymakers across London, the UK and the world to join the movement to change food culture in the country. This is an open invitation for people who believe in:
Healthy, sustainable, living food made with rural, artisanal practices
Supply chains that prioritise quality over price and make good, healthy food available
The importance of community in cities across the world, starting with London