Rashe was born in Hartford, Connecticut and lived all around the world during her childhood as a child of a military family. She moved to Georgia as a teen and graduated from Greene County High School. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Occupational Environmental Management from Methodist University and a master’s Administration Justice and Security from University of Phoenix. She is the owner of Rashe’s Cuisine, a catering and home meal delivery service of delicious Jamaican inspired meals. She started her business in Greene County, and then moved to Athens in 1993 to be closer to family. Rashe is also the founder of the newly formed Culinary Kitchen of Athens, a community kitchen project to help other entrepreneurs like herself expand their businesses. She lives on the west side of Athens with her children ages 25,18,9,4.
What inspired you or led to your current career?
I was back living in the states, culturally Jamacian, and had been living in Spain. I traveled all over Europe and Africa and everywhere I went I always picked up different cultures. My mom did not allow us to go to a place and not have what the traditional food was in that area. We were not going to the McDonalds and the Pizza Hut even though they had them, we were not allowed to go. We met a lot of friends who were teaching us how to make the traditional food. So, from that the vision came to me when I was seventeen, and I was like okay this is what I am going to do. People would often ask me to go and cook for grandma or grandpa or whatever. You know, cook in my home and take it to whoever. That is kind of how this started initially. Technically, I have had my business since 1993. I registered it in 1994, but the concept idea was actually 1991. 1993 was like oh yeah I have a business! 1994 was like yeah I am doing this for real. I was a personal chef and did catering. For a while I used my degree and was working as an environmental scientist for the EPA as a contractor. But now I do this full-time, and have a food truck as well. I’m also working on helping others bring their business concepts to life.
If you are not eating your own food, is there anywhere in town you like to eat?
Manaweenta! I love everything she makes and I eat whatever she puts on my plate. I have never gone in there and ordered. We know each other from when we were both at the West Broad Farmers Market.
If you could travel anywhere in the world right now, where would it be and why?
I would love to go to Ghana. I have never been to Ghana. I have been to other parts of Africe, Morocco and places close to the Mediteranean. When I lived in Spain I played basketball and we traveled to a lot of different countries to play. Basketball is how I got to see so much, and the fact that you can just catch a train in Europe and go anywhere quickly. But, I would love to go to Ghana. I have known so many people that have gone, and I have never heard anyone speak bad about it ever.
What is your favorite movie? If you don’t have a favorite movie, what is the first movie you remember seeing in a theatre?
My favorite movie is Coming to America!. They have part two coming soon. They are filming in Atlanta right now.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Mom was right! Thank god she is alive, and I have been able to tell her this to her face. She told me so much and although her delivery was sometimes rough, she was always right. Be a person of your word, always, even if it hurts. Don’t tell lies. It is better for you to tell the truth, this way it won’t come back to bite you in the butt. Some of the other things that she was really strict about was that you are responsible for other people. I had a brother, and at one point my cousin lived with us. If one of us did something, we would all get it. I would say this is crazy! But, guess what has happened? I now own a business. If I have employees, they do something crazy and it goes viral, guess who is held responsible for it. That is a lesson that she taught me that I would not understand now if she hadn’t. Those are things that my younger self never would have understood at that time which I understand now. So, I would say to my younger self mom is right. You are not going to like it still. It is going to hurt when you tell her, but she was right.
If you could see any band, dead or alive anywhere, where would it be and why?
Bob Marley in Jamaica before he was appreciated. I want to be able to go back in time, stand in Jamaica and listen to Bob Marley. Even just being able to sit in on one of his interviews live. It was more than just about the music, it was more than just about the money, he was always about the culture and the people and just looking out for each other and being very community. And, that is how I live my life.
If you could put anything on a billboard, besides eat Rashe’s Cuisine, what would you put?
Y’all know we are better than this right?
Where do you see yourself in five years? Do you have a goal for your business or self personally?
We will have the commercial kitchen space open, and I will have my six food trucks and Athens will have a more fluid food truck scene. That’s what I would love to see in five years.
What is something interesting that most people don’t know about you?
I think what people really don’t know about me is that I am not really this outgoing type of person. That is my personality, but me I would rather be home in bed. I am more of a homebody. I go out when I have to. That is why most people are like you only come around when it is about business. I guess it is like Beyonce and Sasha Fierce. When I am outside of my house people will say man she talks a lot. But some people who don’t know me well, think that I don’t talk at all. It takes me a minute, I have to feel you out and see what spirit animal you are looking like. If you come visit me at home, you will be like hello. I will feed you, give you something to eat. I will watch something on TV with you, but I don’t really have much to say to you. Sorry, I am not the best entertainer unless you just really like food. Other than that, I will go hide in a corner somewhere.
What three words or phrases that come to mind when you think of the word “home”?
Freedom, nudity and food. I don’t like clothes. I stay nude. My kids tell their friends, please don’t come to my house and not call first.