Kelly Skappak knows a thing or two about cooking and creativity. When COVID restrictions made catering for large gatherings impossible, Skappak came up with the idea of creating lunches and they are a hit. Posting dishes such as Moroccan roasted vegetable power bowls, Swedish meatballs with noodles in cream sauce, or broccoli cheddar soup, her dishes almost always sell out, with people commenting how amazing and delicious they are.
Originally from Acadia Valley, AB, Skappak grew her knowledge of recipes from an early age, often cooking for her three siblings. Growing up her family occasionally catered to large groups of people, and at the age of 20, she ran Eagle’s Nest Ranch for an off-season–it was both of these experiences that planted the idea of catering as a career.
Crossing the pond at 21-years-old to live in Australia for a year, Skappak worked in a cafe as a barista and often helped out as a line cook. “Being influenced by other cultures in a different country opened my eyes to different flavours and what food could really be,” she said. “Moving back to Canada I realized how much I loved my country and its culture, and I wanted to put what I had learned over the years together and make something beautiful.”
In January of 2012, Skappak took the plunge and started her catering business, Simply Satisfied Catering while working full time. However, it only took a year before things took off and she was so busy with catering, she decided to quit her job to dedicate her time to her cooking. “I love cooking and I love being creative with it. I often get ideas from things I’ve seen or researched and make it my own.” However, not one to sit still, Skappak also decided this was the perfect time to start a family. “I was also pregnant with my first child, taking off a month before and after I had the baby I was very busy… a new baby in tow and working full time was a lot.”
Being able to do something she loves while supporting her family, Skappak made the right decision in dedicating herself to the catering world. “My business in Kindersley and the area had grown so much over the last few years, feeding groups as far south as Cypress, east to Rosetown, west to Consort and north to North Battleford. My largest group is 550 people so far.”
Skappak also credits the support of those around Kindersley with allowing her to continue her business. “Now that I am a single mother I find it difficult to juggle both work and home life. But I would never complain about the life we have. I have two happy healthy boys and a great support group. Now that I have been catering weekly lunches to people in town I realize how much support I have in this community. We stick together and help each other out.” Skappak also tries to give back that support whenever she can, hiring local people to help with catering events and sourcing almost all of her food and supplies from local businesses in town.
“I am so grateful to be able to do business in Kindersley. I am also blessed that I get to love every moment of my work. It is so satisfying to create and I am so happy that so many people enjoy it and the convenience of delivered food right to their doorstep or place of work.”
With a new menu each week, Skappak also offers gluten-free food and caters to anyone with allergies and other dietary needs. But how does she know if her dish will be a hit with everyone? She lets her toughest customers taste test it first. “My absolute favourite part of cooking is when my boys try something new that I’ve cooked and surprisingly love it. Every kid thinks their mom is the best cook in the world, but when mine tell me or other people that I’m the best cook in the world my heart feels full.”
For anyone wanting to try Skappak’s dishes, they simply need to log on to the Kindersley Online Garage Sale Facebook page and leave a comment under the dish’s photo. Alternatively, you can call her at (306) 512-8134
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