In the Raw with Kemi’s Raw Kitchen

By Emma Bangay
22nd Apr 2014

Kemi Nekvapil walks the talk, advising on – and living by – a life more raw. The former baker, chef, yoga teacher and actress resides in Melbourne and consults on how raw food can change lives. Here the London born and raised Kemi talks to The Urban List about The 7 Principles of Raw Beauty, the best bircher muesli in town, and her love of the Bangarra Dance Theatre

TUL: Tell us about Kemi's Raw Kitchen and Raw Beauty Queen?

Kemi's Raw Kitchen is an on and offline recipe book of raw food recipes that inspires people (regardless of what they currently eat) to add more raw to their lives in a way that is simple, realistic and flavour-filled! I believe that the closer we stick to Mother Nature's menu, not only does the food taste better but we feel better, inside and out. 

Raw Beauty Queen is based on The 7 Principles of Raw Beauty: Body Nourishment, Self Love, Creative Expression, Joy Creation, Elevating Relationships and Communities, Living Your Passion, and Purpose and Contribution. Through speaking and running retreats and coaching programs, I empower women to own and nourish their own unique beauty and their lives. 

TUL: What do you aim to provide with both your website and recipes?

That raw food does not have to taste like 'rabbit food' and that when you add life to your life you gain energy, clarity and an increased sense of wellbeing.

TUL: What's the best part of your job?

Making a difference, being of service and the ability to connect and create. I also get to hang out with wonderful people and create partnerships with companies that are dedicated to making the world a better place in one way or another.

TUL: Best bit about basing your businesses out of Melbourne?

It has everything a cosmopolitan city should have, but it also has peace and quiet and space.

TUL: Why do you think makes Aussies so receptive to raw diets?

One reason I am in Melbourne is because of the extraordinary food culture here. Only Melbourne would produce such fine raw food companies such as Loving Earth, Pana Chocolate and Botanical Cuisine.

TUL: Favourite breakfast venue in Melbourne?

I love the bircher muesli at both St Ali North and Milkwood. I also love Three Bags Full as it is one of the few places that does freshly squeezed raw juices and great daily salads.

TUL: Favourite local, low-key beauty hub?

The Japanese Bath House in Collingwood.

TUL: Best local workout?

I am currently training for the Great Ocean Road Marathon, so my knowledge of running tracks is expanding, but Merri Creek all the way to the Yarra is a firm favourite.

TUL: Best way to spend $50 in Melbourne?

Camberwell Market.

TUL: Favourite Australian fashion label?

Gorman! Hands down.

TUL: Favourite Melbourne restaurant?

Currently Chin Chin. I worked in Thailand as a chef and I am a sucker for Asian flavours.

TUL: Best Aussie movie?

Being English, Australian movies have been an education for me. When I first saw The Castle I did not get it; when I started living here, I thought it was one of the funniest movies I had ever seen. The movie that had the biggest impact on me though was Japanese Story starring Toni Collette.

TUL: Favourite Australian performer?

Anything by Bangarra Dance Theatre. I never miss a show.

TUL: Favourite Australian artist?

Clare Bowditch.

TUL: Favourite Melbourne market and why?

Collingwood Children's Farm Farmers Market for the juicy produce, awesome atmosphere, the beauty of land, animals and people being together.

TUL: What does 2014 hold for Kemi's Raw Kitchen and Raw Beauty Queen?

Some great speaking and presenting opportunities are already lined up for this year. Kemi's Raw Kitchen is working in partnership with Stephanie Alexander's Kitchen Garden Foundation in March running a Beginners Class, and I am hosting The Raw Beauty Retreat in Bali in April.

This is the year to finish and publish my book and I am also working closely with The Hunger Project Australia. Since going to Uganda with the organisation last year, I am looking at how my work here empowering women can link to the empowerment of women globally. For me, 2014 is the year of limitless possibilities.

Image Credit: Prue Aja Steedman, Kemi's Raw Kitchen Facebook

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