Keketso bets on tasty mayo to fly

Keketso Sephai
Keketso Sephai
Image: Supplied

The changing seasons bring joy or consternation, depending on what type of season you like.

A few people know that the beauty in the seasons is that wonderful sense of rebirth, sort of like a quarterly makeover.

Fans of makeovers will tell you that there's no better feeling. Everything needs a little tweaking, some polishing once in a while, your favourite can't stay the same forever.

This spirit of reinvention is what sparked a gourmet mayonnaise business idea for Keketso Sephai. At the time she was a trainee chef at the Ritz Carlton in Naples, Florida, in the US.

The 27-year-old decided to add some bacon to a small batch of mayonnaise she'd been making for clients, thus Cook With Keketso gourmet mayonnaise was born.

"I realised that we don't have those types of products back home. I feel I'm more innovative, I wanted to bring things that were not in SA, so that people can taste things that are different," she explains.

Sephai who received her culinary qualification from the Olive Chef School in Bloemfontein, says after the birth of her child she's ready to conquer the condiments sector, by expanding her business.

She also has business interests in catering.

Her mayonnaise products come in a trio of flavours: bacon, herb and smoked peppadew. All three flavours sell as a package at for R195.

Keketso Sephai's innovative spirit as a chef saw her invent tasty mayonnaise products.
Keketso Sephai's innovative spirit as a chef saw her invent tasty mayonnaise products.

Her mayo is egg, dairy and gluten free. It can be used to baste, as a spread for sandwiches and on salads.

"My business is not that known yet. My aim is to grow it and afford to hire maybe two or more people to help. I honestly want to create jobs, to teach people a skill because teaching other people gives them ideas to do something different; it is a good thing."

Sephai is confident her mayo business will take off like a jet, despite the slow start. 

Italian splendor revamped

Veal Tortellini sage and butter sauce veal jus grana Padano pickled shimeji.
Veal Tortellini sage and butter sauce veal jus grana Padano pickled shimeji.
Image: Supplied

The iconic and sought-after Medeo restaurant at the palatial Palazzo in Montecasino recently underwent a revamp.

The eatery boasts a new interior, with sumptuous velvet-covered chairs and springy carpets that invite you to kick your heels off and patter around barefoot, but we advise you not to do this, no matter how tempting it is.

Artwork on the walls features vibrant birds in flight by artist Kirsty May Hall.

The interior design was headed by SA design expert David Muirhead. The new menu offers à la carteoptions that include signature dishes such as octopus carpaccio with potato salad as a starter, sous vide chicken with spinach and goat's cheese roulade, bell pepper sauce, baby potatoes and charred onion as one of the many options for the main course and the signature dessert is apple strawberry crumble with caramel vanilla sauce and cinnamon ice-cream.

MUST TRY : Veal tortellini with sage and butter sauce.

Medeo restaurant at Palazzo in Montecasino.
Medeo restaurant at Palazzo in Montecasino.
Image: Supplied

Rum revival 

Spirits of the past have come back to haunt us in a good way.

In recent years we've seen gin make it from granny's sidebar to the craft breweries of trendy precincts such as Maboneng.

And while you're thinking of new ways to revitalise your gin or yet another Instagram post, the rest of the world is quietly sipping on the next comeback kid, rum.

Yes, rum!

Notorious for being the tipple of choice for the swashbuckling pirates of the Caribbean, this often-ignored cocktail staple is ready for its 15 minutes in the limelight.

In the United Kingdom, rum sales topped £1bn (R19bn) in 2018, for the first time.

SA has more than 10 distilleries crafting the spirit. Rum is, by law, to be made using either sugar or sugar cane by-products such as molasses, and we have plenty of sugar cane in this country.

Single Estate Blackberry Basil.
Single Estate Blackberry Basil.
Image: Supplied

Here are a few recipes, so you can stay ahead of the curve, made with Richland Rum, which was newly launched in South Africa.

Single Estate Blackberry Basil


2 to 3 blackberries

1 to 2 basil leaves

½ oz (15ml) lemon juice

¼oz (7.5ml) Almost Rum pure sugar cane syrup

2oz (60ml) Single Estate Old South Georgia Rum - Chateau Elan Port Cask Exchange

1oz (30ml) club soda


Combine blackberries, basil, lemon juice, and sugar cane syrup in a Richland Rum glass. Muddle.

Fill glass with ice.

Add rum and stir.

Top off with club soda.

Garnish with blackberries and basil.

Richland Coffee.
Richland Coffee.
Image: Supplied

Richland Coffee


1 ½ oz (45ml) Single Estate Old South Georgia Rum

½ oz (15ml) Almost Rum pure sugar cane syrup

6oz (180ml) coffee

1 ½oz (45ml) whipped heavy cream


Combine rum, syrup, and coffee in a warm Richland Rum glass. Float heavy cream on top. Garnish with grated nutmeg.

  • Units of measurement: 1 oz = 30 ml


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