Lerato Panyane from Springs is a chef lecturer at Capsicum Culinary Studio’s Boksburg campus. Panyane will be celebrating her Basotho culture this Heritage Day and having lunch with her beloved gogo who she hasn’t seen for the past six months.
She shares with us what will be on the menu and her recipe for steamed bread.
Where will you be spending Heritage Day?
With my family at my grandmother’s house. I can’t wait for this as we haven’t seen her since March this year – a whole six months.
What does the day mean to you?
It means embracing and learning about our different cultures – where we come from, the food we eat and the clothes we wear; the history behind it all.
How do you define South African cuisine?
Food that our forefathers ate and we grew up eating and were taught to cook. Meat, grains and pulses. It is a fusion of the melting pot of different people and cultures that make up our nation.
What would be your perfect Heritage Day meal; why, and who would you share it with?
It is the food that my grandmother cooks for the entire family each year when we get together on Heritage Day and it’s extra special this year as the Covid lockdown has kept us apart.
Starter: Dipabi (Toasted ground mielies mixed with sugar and salt)
Mains: Malamohodu (tripe) served with pap and moroho (spinach)
Dessert: Leqai (which is an African beer)
Once again, we will gather and eat her food and she will also teach us about her culture and customs and tell us stories of her early years.  
What are your favourite three South African dishes and why?
Lamb stew – with steamed bread to mop of the juices. This is the first dish I learned how to make when I was still a young girl.
Chicken Curry, which reminds me of my late aunt who made the best chicken curry I have ever eaten. I have tried to recreate it a number of times but it isn’t the same.
Samp and beans, the Xhosa dish called umqoshu, which you will find at any black communities’ celebrations or events.


480g cake flour
240g mealie meal
10ml salt
10ml sugar
10g dry yeast
750ml lukewarm water
Mix all the dry ingredients together.
Add the lukewarm water and mix to a soft dough. Knead until the dough is smooth and elastic.
Place the dough down, form into a round and cover it with greased plastic wrap and leave to rest for 10 minutes.
Knock the dough down, form again into a round and place it into a greased round dish.
Knot a cloth around the bowl and place it into a pot of boiling water. Place the lid onto the pot and allow it to boil gently for one hour or until cooked.
Check by using a knife or toothpick and poke in the middle to see if it’s cooked.
Then serve and enjoy with any meat or poultry stew.
And if you want to hone your cooking skills even further then think about Capsicum Culinary Studios internationally recognised and accredited Chef 101 course which you can do from the comfort of your own home. This top international digital learning platform guides users through culinary technique building blocks, giving them the ability to launch themselves into further studies, a career as a chef or to become an amazing home cook. Chef 101 includes 20 cooking courses. To find out more information or to register go to www.capsicumcooking.com and click on ‘Online Courses’.

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