Ten of Gauteng’s best chefs will be participating in Slow Food’s much anticipated Serengeti Eat-In which takes place in Kempton Park on Saturday, March 25. They are Adele Stiehler-van der Westhuizen (Prue Leith); Adrian Vigus-Brown (Melrose Arch Hotel); James Diack (Coobs); James Khoza (Sandton Convention Centre); Kalpesh Hansjee (Michelangelo); Klaus Beckmann (La Luna); Matthew Foxon (54 on Bath); Rocco Verster (Emoyeni); Shanei Dinna (Hyatt Regency) and Shane Smit (Jamie’s Italian).
They will each prepare a different cut of an Nguni carcass making use of the entire animal from nose to tail. The animal has been sourced from Victoria Dzowa who farms indigenous Nguni cattle near Magaliesburg. Nguni cattle are registered by Slow Food as an Ark of Taste breed, one which is threatened by industrialisation and is of particular cultural importance in South Africa.
For many years, Slow Food has been on the front line concerning meat consumption and animal welfare. In 2015 Slow Food launched Slow Meat aimed at promoting the work of small-and medium-scale producers who work with respect for animal welfare and at raising awareness about better, cleaner and fairer consumption habits. By eating nose-to-tail, Slow Food hopes to encourage consumers to reclaim the value of these underutilised cuts of meat and show greater respect for the animals and humans that brought them to the plate. Shopping for less-known cuts also keeps artisanal butchers and the farmers they work with in business.
The Serengeti Eat-In – which runs from 10am until 5pm – takes place at the Serengeti Golf & Wildlife Estate and includes an Earth Market where 40 Slow Food producers will be present to showcase and sell their produce. There’s everything from organic veggies and charcuterie to chicken and egg suppliers. Nguni artwork, hides and clothing will also be on sale. There will also be live music in an event for the whole family.
Tickets are R335 and include five randomly selected coupons, each for a different plate of Nguni beef as well as one ticket for a secondary (offal) cut. You will also receive full membership to Slow Food for a year. (If you are already a member the cost is R295). Children pay R75 which comprises an Nguni beef burger, hand cut fries and a juice. There will be a full cash bar featuring Vrede en Lust wines and craft beer.
At the end of the chefs’ cook-off, diners will be asked to vote for the dish they enjoyed most by awarding their favourite chef a gold ticket. (All chefs took part in a blind draw, prior to the event, to select the meat they will be preparing as well as choosing organic produce from Slow Food’s Soweto 10 000 Food Gardens project).
Tickets can be booked on www.quicket.co.za.
The Serengeti Eat-In takes place at the Serengeti Golf and Wildlife Estate situated on the R25 (Bapsfontein Road), off the R21 Highway in Kempton Park.
Slow Food events for this year include:
Serengeti Eat-In – Saturday, March 25
Slow Meat (focus on game meat) Karoo Food Festival, Cradock Eastern Cape – Saturday, April 29
Durban Eat-In KZN – Saturday, July 29
Soweto Eat-in – Saturday, October 7
Slow Food is a global, grassroots organisation, founded in 1989 to prevent the disappearance of local food cultures and traditions, counteract the rise of fast life and combat people’s dwindling interest in the food they eat, where it comes from and how our food choices affect the world around us.
Since its beginnings, Slow Food has grown into a global movement involving millions of people in over 160 countries, working to ensure everyone has access to good, clean and fair food. Slow Food believes food is tied to many other aspects of life, including culture, politics, agriculture and the environment. Through our food choices we can collectively influence how food is cultivated, produced and distributed, and as a result bring about great change.
Slow Food envisions a world in which all people can access and enjoy food that is good for them, good for those who grow it and good for the planet.
Their approach is based on a concept of food that is defined by three interconnected principles: good, clean and fair.
GOOD: quality, flavoursome and healthy food
CLEAN: production that does not harm the environment
FAIR: accessible prices for consumers and fair conditions and pay for producers