From cooking food to cooking hits Anele “Dladla Mshunqisi” Dladla, 28, rose to fame earlier this year when he featured on DJ and producer, Benny Maverick’s single titled Memeza.
But that is not where it all started; Dladla Mshunqisi has been setting dance-floors alight, shouting his gimmicks since 2009, just for the fun of it and to entertain people.
He is also heard on Spirit Banger’s Washa Mlilo and Distruction Boyz’s latest offering Omunye, both dance floor fillers. But that is not the only thing he is good at – he’s a whizz in the kitchen too.
Straddling the worlds of the culinary arts and the entertainment industry, Dladla said cooking and music are things driven by passion, of which he has loads.
Born in KwaMashu and currently residing in Durban North, he fell in love with cooking at a very young age.
When I paid him a visit at his home, he was making macaroni and cheese, coleslaw and a green salad. He was wearing his white chef’s jacket and because he wants the best of both worlds, a pair of headphones around his neck.
“I was nine-years-old when I started loving cooking. My mother likes cooking so I would always help her in the kitchen until I was 12-years-old when I would toil in the kitchen and started cooking for the whole family.”
At 16, he started working for ServePro, a hospitality and events management company in Durban North, where he later became the head cook of the company.
“I worked during my high school years at ServePro. Initially it was just for fun and to gain more experience at cooking.” After finishing school in 2011, he started his own food company, Amathiba Catering and Enterprise.
“With the knowledge, experience and the drive I received at ServePro, I managed to also open up job opportunities for people and the youth, and also trained children on how to cook”, he said.
Dladla said he loves cooking pasta and curry dishes. “My signature lies in curry, be it chicken or beef, and pasta. I love boerewors pasta, cheese pasta and vegetarian pasta served with salads.
"I’m a person who is always keen to learn new things in the kitchen and I’m attentive when someone is cooking. I try to also keep up with the latest trends in the food scene.
"Cooking is one business I will always invest in. As much as I’m known for the music now, it’s not something that I wanted to be known for, it just happened. But I love the food industry more than the music industry,” he said.
When there is no time to have a home-cooked meal, Dladla enjoys any pasta or lasagne dish from Tasha’s.
He said he hopes to one day have a restaurant where people can come and enjoy his food, while also being entertained by the gimmicks he’s become famous for.
Dladla said that his music career will take off next year. “I will be releasing my first single next year and also feature in more songs. There are so many musicians approaching me, wanting to work with me. The only thing stopping me is having time to work with everyone.”
That’s a good problem to have.