Awards for SA's culinary queens- Siba and Zola

Food & Drink

Local culinary queens and cookbook authors Siba Mtongana and Zola Nene came out tops at the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards hosted in China.

The awards, which are known as the Oscars of the gastronomy world, were founded in 1995 by Edouard Cointreau and honour the best food and wine books in the world.

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Siba Mtongana is not only the host of a popular cooking show on the Food Network on DStv, she recently won international awards for her first cookbook. Picture: Tracey AdamsZola Nene came second in the category of best TV chef book in English for her cookbook Simply Delicious.
Picture: Ayanda Ndamane

This year, the awards received entries from over 200 countries.

Mtongana, who’s cooking show, Siba’s Table airs on the Food Network (DSTV channel 175) and has a best selling self published book My Table, took home the TV: International Food Show Woman Award and the Prestige Award: Special Award of the Jury.

“The highlight was winning the prestige award for my cookbook My Table, which is a country recognition and the only one from the continent to receive that honour,” she said on her social media pages.

“Just being at the ceremony was an amazing experience and I’m delighted My Table has received the recognition it has. Watch this space for more exciting developments.”

Zola Nene, resident chef on SABC 3’s weekday morning show, Expresso, won the award for TV (English) Celebrity Chef and came second in the category of best TV chef book in English for her cookbook Simply Delicious.

When asked how she felt about the experience, Nene said: “… it was all very dramatic, but so very exciting. I'm ecstatic with the result; and to think I came to China to represent South Africa in one category and ended up receiving two awards? I can’t say it enough, I'm just thrilled!”

As part of her tour of China, by invitation of the Embassy of South Africa, Nene will travel to Beijing to host a South African food festival where she will be prepare three menus created specifically for the event.

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