Skip to main content

Ten Year-Old Chefs

If little boys are old enough to have favourite dishes, then they are old enough to cook them.

Mama:  Use that pot to boil this litre of water.

Little C:  Yes mama.

Mama:  This is a small onion.  I peeled it already.  Chop it like this.

Little C:  Yes mama.

Mama:  Chop these three cherry tomatoes.

Little C:  Mama! The water is boiling.

Mama:  Great! Drop one cup of macaroni in the boiling water.  Don’t cover the pot.

Little C: Yes mama!

Mama:  Add a pinch of salt to the boiling macaroni.

Little C:  What’s a pinch mama?

Mama:  Look at my fingers.  See how I pinch the salt?

Little C:  Cool.

Mama:  Here’s another pot.  Add one tablespoon of olive oil.

Little C:  Yes mama.

Mama:  Throw the chopped onions and tomatoes in the olive oil and lower the temperature.

Little C:  Mama, what is a temperature?

Mama:  You must be kidding?  What do you learn in school?

Little C:  Sorry mama.
Mama:  It's O.K.  Temperature is here on this stove. High, medium and low.
Little C:  Thanks mama.

Mama:  This is a strainer.  The macaroni is ready.  Empty it in the strainer. Careful the pot is hot.

Little C:  Yes mama.

Mama:  This is ground beef.  Throw it in the onion and tomato.  Here, add this spice mix. I use it for everything.

Little C:  Yes mama.

Mama:  Sit right here and wait for 10 minutes.

Little C:  Smells good mama.

Mama:  We’ll let the pasta cool a bit then add it to the ground beef.

Little C:  Pasta?  We are cooking macaroni mama.

Mama:  Macaroni and spaghetti are part of the pasta family.  You’ll taste more pasta when we travel to Italy.

Little C:  Italy?  Mama you are the bomb!

Mama:  And I will explode if you burn the food.

Little C:  Sorry mama.

Mama:  Why do your boys call you Little C anyway?  Your name is Cecil.

Little C:  I’m a little chef mama, but I will cook on TV one day.
Teach Little C. about knives and using them safely. Colour is also important.

By:  Nonqaba waka Msimang.


Popular posts from this blog

Black Panther Africa Here and There

Black Panther is about Wakanda a fictionalized country in Africa, but it has delightful snippets of the real Africa.

The movie has tall people, like Kenya’s and Sudan’s sons and daughters. Dora Milaje, the royal guard supervised by Okoye (Danai Gurira) is composed of tall women.Okoye is a common surname or family name in Nigeria, as in Oge Okoye, the actress. There are also scenes where men on horseback are wearing colourful blankets, a common sight in Lesotho, the country surrounded by South Africa.Locals, the Basotho, call these blankets seana marena.The country’s beauty sinks in as one drives from Maseru the capital, up to Leribe and further up the mountains.Great roads too.

Costume design.That’s another snippet about Africa. There is Angela Bassett’s character looking regal, in what is called isicholo in Zulu.Well! it looks like isicholo, a married woman’s headdress. You probably saw the re-mixed version of isicholo in what Beyonce is wearing in the Sorry video. They also speak isiXh…

Black Panther Casting

Chadwick Boseman sure looks like a younger John Kani in Black Panther.That is why the movie won the Best Casting category in my little awards.  Envelope please!

Kani plays King T’Chaka.Boseman is T’Challa, his son.What a striking resemblance.It reminds me of my arrival in New York City some years ago.I used to stare at African Americans because they looked like a cousin, uncle, neighbour, teacher, friend, doctor or someone on the bus. Sure, we learnt about slavery at school, how slave traders stole Africans and how internal wars between chiefs also led to humans being taken to another continent in chains. But being in America, seeing people who look like your world, in Africa, was painful.

“Death is better than bondage.” That is what one character said in Black Panther.Was it Erik Killmonger?I’m not sure but I will double check when I go back.Yes, again.The movie is a cinematic buffet.Don’t talk with your mouth full, as mama would say. We gave the film the Best Casting category for other…

Riyadh and The Hollywood Screenplay

Black Panther is going to be part of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s entertainment history on the 18th of April 2018, when Saudis go back to school.Delete that, make it go back to movie theatres.

It will be the first film, adult Saudis will see after 35 years without popcorn.Public cinema was banned because the country believed that it corrupted the mind. No doubt Black Panther’s gala opening in Riyadh will be attended by the rich and religious, but women will not be wearing gowns that show top and bottom flesh.It’s haram (forbidden). They will be wearing the abaya khalijia and make-up will be picture perfect under the head cover known as the shayla.

It is back to the cinema for Saudi Arabia, but it is also a wake-up call for producers.It is not business as usual in terms of the screenplay.Hollywood and Netflix should throw out the tired dialogue and come up with something original that will be enjoyed by the whole world, across racial, cultural and religious lines. Black Panther, directed…