I am a big fan of reality television shows, so a reality show in the form of a cooking competition is right up my alley. The second season of kykNET’s Kokkedoor, the very popular locally produced Afrikaans reality show, ended a few weeks ago when Johnny Hamman and Elsa Buys were crowned as the winning team.
As far as I can gather Kokkedoor is derived from the French words “coq d’or” which means golden rooster. The owner of a golden rooster had to be wealthy to afford such a prized item and was revered as an important person or the ruler of the roost.
What makes Kokkedoor so unique is that it is so much more than just a cooking competition – it is a celebration of our heritage, i.e. understanding why and where recipes were born and how they made it onto our plates. It revives the nostalgia of ‘onthoukos’ (heritage food) and it applauds the creativity of ‘kinkelkos’ (innovative food).
During the show, ten “Onthoukokke” are teamed up with ten ‘Kinkelkokke”and they compete for the title of the best “onthoukok”/“kinkelkok” combination in South Africa. When a contestant enters, he/she will need to specify if he/she is an “onthoukok” or a “kinkelkok”. “Onthoukokke” are home cooks who do not have formal training and professional experience. They use tried and tested recipes passed down to them by their mothers, grandmothers, etc. to cook traditional food. They are chosen for their knowledge and skills as a home cook and their passion for “onthoukos” or heritage food. “Kinkelkokke” are qualified chefs who have experience in a professional kitchen or restaurant. They are chosen for their technical skills and on-the-job experience to come up with new innovative ways to jazz up traditional favourites. The idea is that the two types of cooks inspire each other by bringing the old and the new together in a harmonious effort.
The show is presented by Mariëtta Kruger and the judges are food experts Nic van Wyk and Hetta van Deventer-Terblanche. The show is filmed in the picturesque town of Prince Albert in the Western Cape (pictured below).
Be sure to look out for the Kokkedoor recipe books in leading book stores.
Sources: www.kokkedoor.dstv.com; http://www.princealbert.org.za