The lazy makoti’s guide to the kitchen by Mogau Seshoene – reader impression

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Title: The lazy makoti’s guide to the kitchen
Author: Mogau Seshoene
Publisher: Quivertree Publications
ISBN: 978-1-928429-13-5

This reader impression was written and sent to LitNet on the writer's own initiative.

The front cover of The lazy makoti’s guide to the kitchen, a Gourmand World Cookbook Awards winner and number one bestseller, drew my attention right away. Striking a relaxing pose on a kitchen countertop while cradling a glass of red wine, a beautifully coiffured lady smiles charmingly at the camera. She is dressed in a little black dress and a frilly red and white apron. She looks relaxed and in control – the perfect model for a cookbook that is hailed as an answer for many inexperienced cooks (the lazy makoti means “the lazy daughter-in-law”) who find the kitchen a daunting place.

Dorah Sitole, late chef, food writer and cookbook author, writes in the foreword:

It is every makoti’s wish to be a kitchen goddess, and there’s nothing as special as having your own instructor holding your hand – even more special to have her cookbook at your beck and call. It covers all the basics and features recipes that every cook should know.

Mogau Seshoene, a trendsetter and go-getter who made the Forbes 30 under 30 list in 2016, is the author of the very popular The lazy makoti’s guide to the kitchen – a user-friendly, easy-to-follow cookbook featuring quick and easy recipes with ingredients from the pantry.

Model and TV personality Matapa Maila Rikhotso has no doubt that “if you want your kitchen charm to be permanently on fleek, then this recipe book is definitely for you” (10). Thembisa Mdoda, also a TV personality, agrees that The lazy makoti’s guide to the kitchen is “a stunning collection of everything that is South African; a true melting pot of African and modern” (11).

Paging through the cookbook, I have to admit that it is a very attractive book with beautiful photography and an understated yet elegant layout. Seshoene’s sparkling personality bounces off the pages. It’s easy to see why she’s Instagram-famous and has thousands of foodie followers. She obtained a diploma in culinary arts in 2016 from the Culinary Training and Innovation Academy and trained under Chef Werner at the Saxon Hotel in Johannesburg. She also took part in the Mandela Washington Fellowship at the University of Wisconsin, Stout, in the US. She founded the Lazy Makoti, offering a series of cooking classes, as part of her dream to preserve South African cuisine and heritage.

The lazy makoti’s guide to the kitchen comprises ten chapters and 168 pages. I list each chapter below and give three recipes per chapter.

“The morning after” – No-crust mini quiches, Spicy chicken livers and Banana bread

“What’s for supper?” – Pilchard cottage pie, Creamy herby chicken and Seafood paella

“The weekender” – Dressed corn, Caramel popcorn and Flower ice cubes

“Winter warmers” – Butternut soup, Bone marrow and split pea soup and Roasted red pepper soup

“Khumbul’ekhaya” – Sorghum breakfast porridge, Tinga and hardbody chicken and Mopani worms

“Seven colours” – Tender lamb shanks, Sticky pork belly and Sunday peach and passion fruit trifle

“Side affair” – Classic potato salad, Chickpea and bean salad and Couscous, peach and baby spinach salad

“Leftover remix” – Butternut fritters, Chakalaka shakshuka and Curry pie pots

“Cheat day” – Peppermint crisp cake, Salted caramel and apples upside-down cake and Peached pear trifle

“Taste of Africa” – Fried rice with shrimp, Banana madazi and Fried plaintain (cooking banana)

If you’re on a hunt for a cookbook that leads you through kitchen basics and teaches you foody tips, tricks and fresh ideas, look no further. You can get your copy of The lazy makoti’s guide to the kitchen here.


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