Cooking in Zulu

Cooking is pheka in Zulu.  Kids eat, play and sleep.  It’s a kids’ thing.  That is why it is funny listening to them bragging about what their mothers and aunts are cooking for dinner.        

Sorry! Putting lettuce in a bowl and adding tomatoes and cucumbers is not cooking.  Burn, burn, burn!  That is cooking.  There must be some heat to nudge things into action.
Phe-ka.  The first part of the verb is pronounced like perk, the second part like the name Kasim.

We-nza-ni ubaba?
What is dad doing?
He is cooking.
We-nza-ni Joyce?
Joyce what are you doing?
I’m cooking.
We-nza-ni uSamantha?
What is Samantha doing?
U-se-khishini.  U-ya-pheka.
She is in the kitchen, cooking.
Pheka i-phalishi.
Cook some grits.
Pheka i-lasagna.
Cook some lasagna.
Pheka i-thanga.
Cook some pumpkin.
U-Thami u-pheka u-peas.
Thami is cooking peas.
U-Arsenio u-pheka i-pasta.
Arsenio is cooking pasta.
U-Sharon u-pheka i-turkey.
Sharon is cooking turkey.
What will you cook?
Ngi-zo-pheka i-sobho.
I will cook soup.
Ngi-zo-pheka i-nkukhu.
I will cook chicken.
I’m still cooking.
They are still cooking.
Nobody cooked, (Imagine kids’ faces)

Nonqaba waka Msimang is the author of Sweetness the novel.


Popular posts from this blog

Mobile Phones and Mathematics

Zulu 24 - Crying

Wallets Credit Card Politics