Valencia Maluleke, our Head Chef, shares her passion...
I love cooking and enjoyed it from a very young age, so when we had to choose subjects in Std 6, I choose Home Economics. My passion for food grew during school years and at a stage I wanted to become a dietician.
Unfortunately it was not possible for me to attend University to study for a Dietician -we were a large family and the necessary funding wasnít there. My brother was the older one and was fortunate enough to have the experience.
That didnít put me down and I enrolled to study at the technical college of Venda. I studied food service management. Iíve been cooking professionally for the last 8 years - it has always been in my blood.
My speciality is preparing meats to a melt in the mouth experience and also deserts and decadents as I feel I can express my passion for food with colour and technical abilities in culinary services.
My best dish is anything I put my heart and mind to. I love working with food and experimenting with flavours, new ideas and recipes.
My family supported me greatly through my journey as a chef. In my community it is the women that must know how to cook and not for it to be considered a career, but I made it work and my family is my rock! I made a success of it and now I am the proud Head Chef of Komtai Tented Lodge, Nkomazi Game Reserve.