Crown The Brown: Sherona Naidoo – The SlayCook SA
Crown The Brown: Sherona Naidoo a.k.a The SlayCook SA. 23 year old Sherona from Durban knows how to cook up a storm while bagging an entire degree! Our very own Slay Cook Chef is currently in her last semester studying a BSC Environmental Science. Being a foodie, Sherona has a dream of someday opening her own restaurant!
We love the magic, Sherona creates in the kitchen and she has shared many of her delicious recipes with her foodies online! We just cannot get enough and wanted to know more about this insanely talented SlayCook! Here is what Sherona shared with us.
Slay Cook SA! What a name, what a brand! A platform for us all to become masters in the kitchen! What inspired you to start this magnificent page?
I started cooking at a late age I suppose, mainly because I felt very intermediated by the idea of actually being in the kitchen and the fear that I might fail or it may turn out to be a total mess! However, as I slowly started to learn to cook by experimenting with different techniques, flavors and spices, it really felt amazing! I felt like I could do anything in the world and i really wanted to share that experience with other’s who felt the same way I first did.
I also wanted to change the perception around cooking as the concept of cooking is generally associated with ‘laid back stereotypes ‘ hence the name SlayCook came to mind, something modern, sassy and inviting!
You seem to be quite handy in the kitchen! When did you start cooking and what do you enjoy most about making such delicious dishes?
Funny Story, I actually only started cooking towards the end of 2015 and before that I was an absolute disaster in the kitchen, i could barely make cheese toast without causing an explosion!
I personally find joy in the way people react to my food. I love cooking for others and making people happy through their love for food.
I’m sure a lot of people would like to know more about the Cook behind the page! Who is Sherona and what do you do for a living when you’re not making our mouths water with those delicious meals?
Firstly I would just like to say thank you to everyone for the amazing support in the past few months! So as much as I love to be called ‘The Slaycook’ my real name is Sherona Naidoo, I am 23 years old from Durban Kwa-Zulu Natal and my weaknesses are soji and chicken biryani.
When I am not creating magic in the kitchen I am trying to bag that degree, I am currently in my last semester studying towards a BSc in Environmental Sciences. My dream in life is to someday start my own restaurant so I could share my food with everyone.
What is your favourite dish to make and why?
Masala Chicken Biryani. Biryani has always been closed to my heart and is the main reason I attend functions. At the end of 2016, I had become very ill and had to go for surgery, my first words coming out of the anesthetic was of course, I want chicken biryani! i mean who doesn’t love Biryani!
What dish do you find most challenging to make and what cuisine would you hope to learn to incorporate in your daily cookbook someday?
I think the most challenging dish i struggled with at first was Chowmein, I don’t eat Chinese food so it was slightly difficult to cook something without knowing what it is suppose to taste like however i eventually learnt how to thankfully.
I would definitely like to incorporate more Asian dishes, I love experimenting with the different flavor palettes in the Asian cuisine.
Do you have any cooking tricks or tips that you can share with us?
1. When following a recipe you don’t have to be 100% accurate, go with your gut, if you don’t have a certain ingredients don’t panic, just substitute it with something similar that you have in your kitchen and remember to have fun!
2. Know your spices! This helped me a lot when i started to cook as spices are an important part of cooking and understanding the aromatics they add to a dish will enable you to create better dishes.
3. Don’t add too much of spices! sometimes too many spices can cause conflicting flavors which can result in your dish being ruined, keep it simple.
4. Cook with love, the secret ingredient is always love!
What are some of the misconceptions people have when it comes to cooking certain dishes or cuisines?
I think most people especially our youth avoid cooking because they feel the process is difficult and sometimes the amount of ingredients required for a recipe can be overwhelming. Sometimes people also assume that cooking curries are very difficult which is absolutely not true!
Your platform is helpful and insightful. I can’t wait to make some of those delicious foods! What is the most requested dish that people suggest online?
The most requested dish I have received on the SlayCook page was butter chicken. I think most people struggle with butter chicken as there are way too many methods and recipes out there.
What does the future look like for SlayCook in a few years time?
The goal of starting the SlayCook page was to inspire young people to get into the kitchen and change the stereotype around cooking.
I hope that in a few years time I would have mentored and encouraged many people to produce home style meals with ease. I also have a desire to start one on one cooking classes next year to assist those who are still overwhelmed and help them create delicious meals.
What’s your daily mantra and what advice do you have for others trying to learn how to cook ?
Cooking with love, provides food for the soul. No one is born a great cook, one simply learns by doing. So don’t be afraid to use your hands as your hands are your first and best kitchen tool! Happy cooking.
is definitely doing more than just cooking up a storm! An aspiring chef working towards her dream while bagging a degree! What an adventure. The SlayCook
brings us the heat and the best recipes worth trying. For all the foodies out there, be sure to follow Sherona’s platform on instagram @theslaycooksa
! Lets dig in!
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