Hi, I’m stephanie seege
My name is Stephanie Seege and I’ve been working as a full-time entrepreneur since 2014.
I’m born and bred in Finland, now calling London my home, where I’ve lived for the last six years while building food businesses. 15 years ago I may not have guessed that I’d be where I’m today, given what I was up to back then.
In 2005 I founded my first company, Onni Design, while studying for a Bachelor’s degree in Arts Management. Onni, meaning ‘luck’ and ‘happiness’ in Finnish, was a unique range of jewellery that I made and sold. I ran an online store, sourced material from all corners of the world and learned the basics about running a business.
I then realised that I actually wanted to work with food because of personal reasons, and decided to pursue that path.
THE BOOK THAT CHANGED MY LIFE
At the age of two months I was diagnosed with with severe eczema, allergies and asthma. During my childhood and early adulthood I was told that these chronic diseases were incurable and that they simply needed to be managed.
I refused to believe that they were permanent conditions and finally found an Indian doctor who started treating me using herbs and radical dietary and lifestyle changes in 2010.
My first cookbook, The Book That Changed My Life, with 70+ recipes free from gluten, dairy, yeast, eggs and refined sugar, is a direct result of that. I taught myself how to cook in a new way, by means of curing the issues I had and also wanting to inspire other people to cook delicious food, even with a restricted number of ingredients.
In 2014 I founded Helpings to share the recipes I had created and the techniques I had come across while improving my health.
To date, I’ve developed around 500 recipes, yet to be published. Through my own experience I’ve learned that it’s possible to treat, and even cure, many inexplicable health issues.
The formula is naturally different for everyone and it tends to be a little slower than popping a pill. But it works.
My intention is to give people hope, alternatives and show how much fun you can have when you realise what’s possible in the kitchen and how easy it is.
My curiosity for launching an industrially produced product grew during the five years I spent developing recipes for Helpings. Chocolate seemed like a great place to start, especially since I had never been able to enjoy sweet treats as a young girl.
I set out to create something highly indulgent, made with traditional ingredients in an untraditional way, using dates as the only sweetener.
In 2016 we started working on kAAKAO and it turned out to be much more challenging than I had ever anticipated. We finally launched two incredibly delicious bars, Original not plain! and Strawberry & Vanilla, in April 2018.
The base recipe contains four ingredients (cocoa, cocoa butter, dates and coconut milk). Our products are currently sold all over London and on Amazon UK, as well as in Helsinki (Finland), New York (USA) and Hong Kong (China).
Our mission is to challenge and change the food industry for the better.
Because fact of the matter is: Indulgence is your birthright, regardless or eating restrictions, allergies, health issues and personal reasons.
Through kAAKAO we have shown that it’s possible to create a delicious sweet treat, chocolate, that tastes and looks exactly like you would expect it to, but is made in an unconventional, innovative way.
This is only the beginning.