David Higgs and J’Something return as judges on ’My Kitchen Rules SA’. Picture: Supplied
David Higgs and J’Something return as judges on ’My Kitchen Rules SA’. Picture: Supplied

Hungry for the win, meet the first 5 teams in 'My Kitchen Rules SA' season 3

By Debashine Thangevelo Time of article published Sep 16, 2021

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After a bit of a break, “My Kitchen Rules SA” is back for a third season.

The cooking reality series, which won a Golden Horn for Best International Format Show, at the 13th South African Film and Television Awards ceremony, sees J’Something and David Higgs return to the judging panel.

Of course, the judges are legends in the culinary world.

Although J’Something’s claim to fame was as a member of award-winning music group Mi Casa, his passion for cooking manifested in him bagging his own cooking show, opening a restaurant, launching his cookbook “Something’s Cooking”, as well as a web series.

Higgs is a chef by profession. Aside from co-owning Johannesburg’s finest restaurants, Marble and Saint, he also released his cookbook, “Mile 8”, and has been a hit with his YouTube cooking channel, “Dave’s Kitchen”.

Given the wealth of experience between the two, there is no fooling their palates on the show.

With Covid-19 keeping most people indoors and cooking up a storm, the competition this year should be pretty stiff.

For those unfamiliar with the internationally-formatted show, the “Instant Restaurant” is the first phase, where the coupled contestants host their rivals, as well as the celebrity chefs, in their home.

The second phase shifts to the “My Kitchen Rules South Africa” headquarters, where they will then be put through their paces, in a series of challenges.

The couple who wow the judges with their culinary skills, will end up walking away with R1 million.

Of course, this season’s contestants are not just talented, they are vibrant, outspoken and, as expected, hungry for the win.

Below are the first five teams competing for the title:

Besties from Johannesburg: Palesa M, 34, and Palesa N, 31.

BFFs Palesa M and Palesa N. Picture: Supplied

Friends for five years, Palesa M is a group executive officer for a media agency, a UN ambassador and founder of an NPO dedicated to empowering youth.

Palesa N is a digital designer. And both of them recently started their own fashion lines.

Both of them have had a long-standing love affair with food. Palesa N’s parents have been in the restaurant business for the past 25 years, and Palesa M’s grandmother taught her everything she needs to know in the kitchen.

While Palesa N has an “old school-meets-modern technique” approach to cooking, Palesa M is steered by her adventurous palate.

Dad and son buddies from Fourways: Brett, 50, and Aidan, 25.

Father and son Brett and Aidan. Picture: Supplied

Brett and Aidan are inseparable. Aside from running an events company together, they play golf and cook together, too.

“He’s my best friend – I was a single dad and the twins have always been with me. We have travelled the world playing golf, and all three of my kids mean absolutely everything to me,” says Brett.

Interestingly, Brett started cooking at the age of six. He went on to run the Air Force kitchen and, when his golfing career ended, he opened two restaurants, where his chefs imparted lots of knowledge.

Aidan loves eating and his favourite meal is pap and brisket, that’s sold on the roadside.

Between the two, they have a winning combination of cook and taster.

Alberton moms: Karen, 34, and Tenille, 39.

Moms Karen and Tenille. Picture: Supplied

They met through their husbands, who went to school together. While Karen is a full-time mom, Tenille is an optometrist.

Both are very optimistic individuals, with a shared love of Asian flavours.

That said, Karen is partial to butter. It’s a staple in almost all her dishes, and she has mastered the art of striking the right balance of sesame oil and chilli.

Given that these two are regular chatterboxes, too, they are will chatting, as well as cooking up a storm.

Globetrotters from Johannesburg: Retha, 30, and Tshepi, 29.

Travelling buddies Retha and Tshepi. Picture: Supplied

Brace yourselves for a heady dose of sassy, energetic, smart, and socially-conscious besties.

Retha, who is competitive as hell, is a self-taught cook. She gravitates towards healthy cuisine. Of course, that doesn’t mean it lacks flavour. That’s where her mastery comes into play.

On the other hand, Tshepi is fond of Meditteranean and Asian dishes.

Fortunately, their specialities complement each other beautifully.

Wife and husband from Bedfordview: Nevi, 48, and Craig, 49.

Husband and wife Nevi and Craig. Picture: Supplied

Although they’ve been married for 12 years, they’ve known each other for 20 years.

He’s the director of a hospitality company and she runs an events business. Given their professions, hosting guests comes naturally to the two of them.

“Craig and I find reasons to bring people and food together.

“Our kitchen is the life and soul of our home.

“Everyone seems to gather there, while meals are being cooked and desserts prepared – or dishes washed,” says Nevi.

“Over the years, we have received countless compliments relating to our perceived talent, entertaining visits and our food creations.

“A few people have suggested that we enter MKRSA and the current timing was perfect,” added Nevi.

“My Kitchen Rules SA” season 3 airs on M-Net (DStv channel 101) from Sunday, September 19, at 6pm.

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