Thu | Nov 15, 2018

Townsends of flavour

Published:Thursday | August 16, 2018 | 12:00 AMKrysta Anderson/Gleaner Writer
Chef Rushelle Townsend shows off her heese stuffed chicken paired with creamy mac and cheese.
Chef Rushelle Townsend added final touches to her dish.
When spicy marries sweet, this pineapple steamed fish is the mouthwatering result.
Vegetable-stuffed chicken served with a side of fresh garden salad.
Ghetto pizza bursting at the savoury seams with flavour.
Tasty cheese-stuffed chicken paired with creamy mac and cheese.
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Rushelle Townsend has had passion for culinary arts since she was 12 years old. Adding to the responsibility of cleaning and cooking in the household, the young chef took great pleasure in jazzing up several dishes. "I'd always be making incision in the chicken and cutting up the seasoning for my parents. Or I'd steal out the cheese and put it in the middle of the dumpling and fry it out. So, without knowing it, my passion began very early."

By high school, she was well on her culinary journey, studying food-related subjects at both St Catherine High and Holy Childhood. Armed with a food handler's permit, the self-taught chef shared that it brings her joy to see persons enjoy the food she creates. "We have a lot of foodies around looking to entice their taste buds, and I felt compelled to share a difference in creativity and taste with the masses," she added.

 

Family influence

 

Family played a major role in influencing, encouraging and assisting with the start of Townsend's catering business. Her dad ensured that she knew what to do in that department; he loves cooking and would call her in the kitchen to watch and help and later, to execute on her own. Her mother, fiercely independent, played an active part in teaching her the tricks of the trade as well. When she decided to venture into this field, her parents weren't surprised. They were thrilled and super supportive, so much so that they have joined in on the business.

The journey for this innovative entrepreneur has been interesting, challenging, but rewarding. "Honestly, at first, I felt like a little fish going into the sea. The sharks are out there, so fear became a factor, but I've remained focused and determined. I've had to step outside of my comfort zone, and that proved to be a bit difficult, but I've learned more about myself, and this personal growth has shaped me into the woman I've become." She continued, " I've not been defeated thus far. It's very exciting, and I've been enjoying every moment of it. They say, too, that 'if you do what you love, you never work a day in your life', so that's definitely a plus."

The reception three years in has been amazing, Townsend said. People are blown away by the symphony of flavours playing music on your palate. With delectable dishes like pineapple-steamed fish, lemon-fried fish, cheese stuffed chicken, vegetable-stuffed chicken, vegetable wraps, cheese-creamed yams, their signature mac and cheese, and their famous ghetto pizza, you can't help but salivate with each savoury bite! The concept is new, the quality is consistent, and the food is excellent. Ultimately, they provide the flavourful variety to spice up your life. They are big on using natural seasonings and they're conscious of health issues, so provisions can be made to custom-fit a person's special dietary needs.

For more information on how to order any of the dishes you see here or more, you can find them on Instagram: @towns.cateringja or on Facebook: Townsend Catering. You can also call 876-796-7177.

krysta.anderson@gleanerjm.com