JOHANNESBURG – Transforming basic cooking into an exciting art form is the language of Chef Nono.
Be different – very different. Ulundi-born Chef Nono Mtshali has achieved just that, mastering the art of “people’s cookery” with a unique style and panache of her own.
We are privy to one of her fine dining cookery demos at the International Hotel School in Westville where she is taking her audience through the steps of making a celebration stuffed fillet and a traditional Italian paella, rice seafood and all the bits and pieces that go with it.
While there are some in the audience that seem a little bit uneasy about the idea of using lobsters, king prawns and mussels in their repertoire, Chef Non reassures them that the taste will be in her words “magnificent” and not to be missed.
“I look to push the boundaries a bit in my cooking classes,” she explains during a break in her demo.
“Unless people experiment with different foods, they will never enable to master new skills. And that’s really what it is all about – putting the traditional recipes we all knew as children them to one side – and trying something entirely new.”
At 29, Chef Nono is becoming a popular figure in the South African culinary industry, well known for her no-nonsense approach to cooking and the belief that everyone has the capability of being a good cook – as long as they learn the basics and are prepared to be adventurous. Continue reading…