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'Cooked' spills the beans on SA's restaurateurs

This is a must-have book for all foodies.

You get the story behind the people that create the food you love and find out how the establishments you frequent came about.

It is a great read with recipes ranging from the simple, such as the piccalilli hot dogs and Habanero chicken gizzard cone, to recipes for chiffon cake and smoked springbok with pickled walnuts and creamed cabbage.

Cooked in South Africa showcases 47 chefs and aims to show the many diverse influences that our restaurateurs, chefs and foodies have been exposed to that makes their food/restaurant what it is.

All proceeds from the sale of the book will be donated to children living with disabilities.

 Beatrice Holst is one of the chefs featured in Cooked in South Africa.

She is the owner of raw vegan eatery, Raw and Roxy.

Holst started her business in a tiny room with just R2000. She has been on Bree Street in Cape Town for a year.

Originally from Copenhagen, Holst settled down in the Mother City about four years ago and started her eatery out of necessity - there simply wasn't a place for raw vegans like her to go eat out at.

In the simplest terms, being a raw vegan means that you do not consume food and products of animal origin, your diet consists of raw fruit and vegetables.

Raw vegans do not consume food that has been heated over 40C.

Holst maintains this is because nothing in nature grows at a temperature higher than that.

Food cooked at a higher degree is essentially "dead". These foods then have an adverse effect on your body.

She claims that within six months of starting the lifestyle, her arthritis was cured. Her hot flushes - which are normally caused by menopause - also stopped.

"I had arthritis, menopause, cancer and used reading glasses when I was in my early 50s. And I didn't do anything but this, now it's almost 10 years later and I have nothing. I don't even use my glasses anymore."

Holst is adamant that her raw vegan lifestyle can do the same for others. She is certainly not the only one who sees the merits of it.

People from all walks of life visit her restaurant daily. She gets her local customers mostly from word of mouth and her international clients normally find out about her business online.

She revealed that a famous international director had frequented her establishment daily.

Holst not only runs the restaurant, she creates all the dishes herself.

She's no stranger to the food industry. She ran a catering company in Los Angeles, US, where she served food to rock stars and movie stars alike.

"I go home and study a lot, we taste every single one [dish] that goes out. It's a lot of heart and quality control that goes into it. Everything is well thought out and flavour intensive."

Holst said that people are often surprised at how tasty her desserts are. They are made without dairy or sugar.

Newcomers to her restaurant can ask for a tapas style platter to taste all that is on offer. Her lasagne is a bestseller. For "pasta" she uses baby marrow and she makes "cheese" from nuts. The recipe for the dish is featured in the book.

She teaches classes on removing parasites from your intestines and how to detox properly. She also says she teaches people how to get rid of cancer.

 Holst remarked that a lot of businesses in South Africa copycat.

She found this perplexing, yet she was not deterred by it.

"You have to keep one step ahead," she said.

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