About

Want to discover African food?
Let us feed your curiosity

Maria Bradford

“I was born and raised in Freetown, the capital of Sierra Leone. I have many fond childhood memories. Mainly to do with my fascination for age-old African recipes. Discovering fresh, local, flavoursome ingredients. And cooking for all my family and friends. My enduring love for the taste of home has taken me to this point. I have turned my life-long passion of food into a fulfilling business – bringing the reinvention of African dishes to a broader audience. This is my calling, and I love it!”

 

About Shwen Shwen

Our mission is simple. We’re here to bring a whole new world of flavours to your door. Dinner parties, weddings, corporate events, we draw upon our Sierra Leonean colourful culture to bring people closer together through food and offer an authentic experience. Always with inspiration from traditional African recipes. And always with a distinctive Maria Bradford twist infused into each dish. You call it ‘Fancy’. We call it Shwen Shwen.

To cook the food, you have to adore the country

To cook the food, you have to adore the country.” – Maria

Cooking is about connection; connecting people through food and we can’t wait to cook for you. It would give us immense joy to bring the complete experience of traditional Sierra Leonean / Afro-fusion cooking and dining to your event. We hope you’ll visit Sierra Leone for yourself one day. Until then, here’s a little taste.

Our feet may leave but not our hearts.

Imagine mountains rising from the sea, beautiful beaches, rainforests, mangrove swamps, savanna grasslands, and rivers. That’s Sierra Leone. A country so beautiful that the locals have nicknamed it Sweet Salone. We have a rich culture, expressed in our arts and crafts, folklore and religion, clothing, cuisine, music and languages. Freetown, its capital, was founded on 11th March 1792 by Lieutenant John Clarkson, ex-slaves from America and free people called the Nova Scotian Settlers. The British took control in 1808 making Freetown a Crown Colony, this led to territorial expansion, and in turn the creation of Sierra Leone. Independence came on 27th April 1961. The new nation was born at the stroke of midnight, when its green, white and blue flag was unfurled, ending more than 150 years of British colonial rule.

Today, Freetown is a buzzing capital and is lively by day or by night. Our culture continues to evolve through music, fashion and of course food.

Eat good you feel good.

We are very particular about what goes into each and every dish. Our vibrant ingredients are sourced from the highest quality producers and suppliers. Trusted connections we’ve taken great care to seek out and build. We love to champion produce that is fresh, exotic, and genuinely from home so we can introduce people to our culture. That’s what African cooking is all about. It’s tasty, healthy, and made for sharing.

Craving the tastes of home?

In Sierra Leone, food is organically produced on a small scale, in a household-based subsistence economy. “My mother grows her own fruits and vegetables. She has a small garden with a horticulture area in her compound where she cultivates a large variety of delicious fruits and vegetables such as bananas, potato leaves, crain crain, and cassava”Maria.


Taking inspiration from our heritage, the food we create at Shwen Shwen opens up a whole new world of flavours and experiences.

EXPLORE Sierra
Leonean Produce