Local news

Well-known Lowvelder PappaChef enters Culinary Olympics in Germany

Pieter Malan hopes that the eight dishes he will present at the Culinary Olympics will secure him a medal.

Pieter Malan, a well-known and much-loved chef in the Lowveld, will be participating in the 26th annual International Exhibition of Culinary Art (Internationale Kochkunst Ausstellung) IKA/Culinary Olympics.

The competition is scheduled to take place at the Messe Stuttgart in Germany.

Malan is set to depart for Stuttgart on January 30 and will showcase his culinary skills on February 6.

Pieter Malan platting a dish at Fiesta Royale Hotel Group in Ghana.> Photo: Supplied/ Pieter Malan

Competing in the culinary arts division, he plans to present a total of eight dishes, each containing a complex combination of over 96 elements.

Currently residing in Ghana, Malan won’t be accompanied by his family on his journey to Germany. Nevertheless, he has dedicated each of his West African cuisine dishes to his sons, Zion, Samuel and Albertus.

Pieter Malan preparing a dish at Fiesta Royale Hotel Group in Ghana.> Photo: Supplied/ Pieter Malan

According to Malan, his kelewele crème brûlée is dedicated to Albertus, embodying the dish’s fun and bold characteristics. The guineafowl dish with yam and a deconstructed waayke represents a new start in his life, reflecting the strength and fearlessness of Zion. His hibiscus and coconut flower will be dedicated to Samuel, mirroring Samuel’s complexity, intelligence and out-of-the-box thinking.

Also read: PappaChef en bekendes kattemaai en kook in die kombuis

Malan’s culinary journey commenced at the age of 12 when he worked as a waiter at the Spur in Middelburg. His passion for the culinary industry blossomed during this time. In 2019, he participated in kykNET’s Kokkedoor cooking competition, securing third place with teammate Ralph Farmer. The Kokkedoor experience led to his own food show, PappaChef, broadcasted on 21 community radio stations in South Africa and Namibia.

Pieter Malan in the kitchen at Fiesta Royale Hotel Group in Ghana.> Photo: Supplied/ Pieter Malan

In 2017, he opened The Blue Print Restaurant in White River, winning the Eat Out Mercedes-Benz Best Everyday Eateries Award.

Elected as the regional chairperson of the South African Chefs’ Association in Mpumalanga in 2021, Malan currently serves as the executive group chef for the Fiesta Royale Hotel Group in Ghana.

The South African Chefs’ Association said that due to the severe economic impact of the lockdown and the strain it placed on sustaining the culinary team, the association couldn’t send its 2020 bronze-winning culinary team to participate in IKA 2024. Therefore, Malan took the initiative, entered, qualified, and will compete at the Olympics as an individual.

Grateful for the support from the hotel group he works for, he acknowledged their sponsorship, proudly representing both South Africa and Ghana under the Fiesta Brand.

Also read: Kook saam met Pieter

Pieter Malan in the kitchen at Fiesta Royale Hotel Group in Ghana.> Photo: Supplied/ Pieter Malan

Malan’s culinary creations aim to educate diners, guests, future chefs and retail about product longevity. Despite African food not being commonly perceived as luxurious, Malan believes it offers sustainable and economically friendly options.

His goal as a chef is to make African cuisine appealing and contribute to poverty alleviation, drive sustainable solutions, and guide consumers toward better decisions. Expressing hope for a successful outcome, Malan aspires to return with a medal.

During his holidays, he plans to open a pop-up restaurant for a few nights in the Lowveld, bringing a taste of his culinary expertise to the region in the company of his family.

Back to top button