Chef puts pen on paper

2018-01-31 06:02
PHOTO: suppliedNompumelelo Mqwebu, a chef-come-author.

PHOTO: suppliedNompumelelo Mqwebu, a chef-come-author.

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FOR chef-come-author Nompumelelo Mqwebu, cooking and penning recipes is more than a hobby, it became part of her life.

Nqwebu’s debut book, Through the Eyes of an African Chef (self-published), was recently launched in South Africa after it sold out at the Frankfurt Book Festival.

Speaking to Fever she said: “Over the years I wrote recipes or creative thoughts about dishes and plating in my black book. I had to document my food experiences and food history through culture and my personal identity.

“I wrote articles on everything food, which featured in national and regional newspapers. The book was always the goal, but it took years as it had to be done right and not rushed, and self-publishing was my best choice.”

Nqwebu said that raising funds was the hardest and longest when it came to publishing the book.

“I read up on food writing and of course I own a lot of cookbooks from my travels. Eventually, I had to make time and put pen to paper. The second hardest was writing the recipes and instructions, because the editor kept returning them for clarity on instructions.

“I learnt that some things I take for granted I had to explain in detail.

“It’s a food journey through my personal identity, travel experiences and a bit of history on indigenous ingredients, cooking methods of old as well as the importance of farmers in our food value chain.

“It helps in dispelling myths about African cuisine and presenting it in a modern style with the core being local ingredients.”

Describing herself as adventurous she said when she’s not in the kitchen cooking up a storm or jotting down her recipes she can be found travelling, reading, hiking, kick boxing and swimming.

Her message to the youth is “you can be granted all the opportunities in the world, but no one can live your life for you.

“Even when life is unfair, don’t give up on yourself – keep pushing.

“As you go through life keep reminding yourself it’s no dress rehearsal.”

Nqwebu’s book is available at leading book outlets or can be ordered online at www.throughtheey (it will be courier delivered locally or internationally).


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