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Celebrated chef Lesego Semenya loses battle against Covid-19

Chef Lesego Semenya loved cooking for people who understand and appreciate food. Picture: @Lesdachef/Twitter

Chef Lesego Semenya loved cooking for people who understand and appreciate food. Picture: @Lesdachef/Twitter

Published Jul 12, 2021


Award-winning celebrity chef, cookbook author and TV personality Lesego Semenya has died.

In a tweet on Monday afternoon, the family revealed that the beloved chef had passed away. He was 39.

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The chef, who used the moniker @Lesdachef on his social media profiles, had revealed that he had tested positive for Covid-19 on his social media profiles and was updating his supporters on what was happening.

His last tweet was on Friday, July 9.

Barely two weeks have gone by since Chef Lesego Semenya was breaking down the impact of the lockdown on restaurants and now he is no more.

Semenya was already a celebrated chef in the culinary industry, but he shot to fame after his tweets about food and cooking tips went viral on social media.

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His blog was also popular, as were the elaborate cakes he created for his clients, sharing them with his followers on social media.

He built a loyal following who hung onto his every word when it came to all things food, restaurants and the culinary industry as a whole.

He freely shared tips on cooking - everything from basic food to fine dining. He also explained the history of spices and other condiments, broke down the debate about Wagyu and other types of beef and was also open about the struggles that black chefs face in the industry.

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JUDGES Neill Anthony, Lorna Masego and Lesego Semenya on ’Top Chef SA’.

It was his openness and charm that saw him being cast on SABC3’s Top Chef in July 2016. He also recently co-hosted and judged Mzansi Magic’s Celebrity Masterchef, which recently won an SA Film and Television Award.

He also bagged a book deal, and his book, Dijo, became a best-seller. It was due for another print run.

The Prue Leith Chefs Academy alumnus was honoured by his alma mater in February last year, for inspiring culinary excellence.

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