Chef Lucia Mthiyane loves cooking and baking! We got up close and personal with the White Star and celebrity chef who spoke to us about her first love and everything else in between.
Tell us a bit about yourself, background and family upbringing
I was born in Umlazi in a family of five – three girls and two boys. I was once a high school teacher and I moved to joburg to pursue my singing and acting dreams, not knowing that eventually food would play a major part of my life. As a result I have been a White Star and Pravda vodka ambassador and they support all my events.
How did you get involved with food?
My friends encouraged me to give cooking classes eight years ago and I have never looked back.
What made you pursue being a chef as a profession?
It’s the passion I have always had for food plus it creates a lot of opportunities like food editorship and in radio.
What are your qualifications for your profession? And where did you obtain them?
I’m proud to say everything I know about food is self taught.
How many years of experience do you have as a chef?
What is your signature dish or style?
Salmon with white star spinach fritters. I love sea food, salads; basically healthy cooking is what I thrive on.
What is your favourite food?
Sweet and sour fish curry.
Top 3 dishes that you recommend this winter?
1. Lamb knuckles stew
2. Oxtail and dumplings
3. Butternut soup
Your top 5 favourite restaurants?
4. Taco Zulu
If you were to cook with a famous person on your cooking show, who would it be?
I would cook with Julius Malema. He is funny and he has a bubbly personality and I would like to pick his brain a bit.
Butter, fresh cream, plain yoghurt, cheese, champagne
Which food is your ultimate weakness?
Any type of curry, I can’t resist.
Do you prefer sweet? Or sour foods?
Sour rather, I’m a savoury girl.
What is that ultimate dream that you still want to fulfil and turn into a reality?
Having my own restaurant, a cook book and a travelling cooking show.
Which chefs do you look up to?
I love Barefoot Contessa, Jamie Oliver and locally, Siba and Dora Sithole.
If you were not a chef, what other career path would you have followed?
I would have been a pilot, I’m fascinated by flying!
What advice would you share with young people who are looking to follow in your footsteps?
Follow your dreams and do what you are passionate about.
How can people get in touch with you for bookings and queries?
My PR agency I work with is Eclipse PR [email protected]
Keep up with Chef Lucia Mthiyane on social media.