Chefs on holiday – Sizo Henna

Posted on 10 May 2020

Here’s what Chef Sizo Henna of Blaque Continental Bistro in Bryanston, Joburg, does with his time off.

On holiday I love to just switch off and relax. I don’t have a specific place that I return to but I do love the Eastern Cape, my home province. I adore Kidd’s Beach and Port Alfred. My parents had to save up for us to go on holiday, and sometimes we would go three times a year, which definitely influenced my love of food and exploring different places.

I think everyone should visit Oudtshoorn in the Karoo, especially for the rich lamb which I enjoy cooking outdoors. Once, when camping out there with some friends, we did all our cooking al fresco. I just love the small-town vibes in the Karoo.

My most memorable holiday was in India, in Mumbai’s bustling suburb of Bandra. The food, from the sweetcorn on the street to the dried fish, was incredible. A big portion of the population is vegetarian so naturally the veggie dishes are excellent.

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London, where I trained to become a chef, has to be my favourite overseas destination. I worked in the centre of the city and found the pub culture amazing. We just don’t have that tradition in South Africa, where an establishment can survive for a hundred years. I also got to work under the late Gary Rhodes while there. What he did with British cuisine was inspiring – he revved it up, he reinvented it. My time in London definitely influenced my style of cooking, and I adopted the sort of placid British way of preparing food. Over the years I’ve found my own tune though.

A favourite meal while travelling was in Geneva in a small bistro. I had a tomato-and-smoked-paprika consommé soup. It was so clear and so rich in flavour.

My approach to cooking is classic, I don’t believe in shortcuts. My food philosophy is simple: do a stunning job every time!

 

Blaque Continental Bistro

In Bryanston opened in a flurry of flavour and jazz at the end of 2019. Expect delicious, simple food, prepared well, with expertly paired wine. 076-989-4688

Blaque Continental Bistro is in the Naturally Yours Centre on the corner of Culross and Main Road in Bryanston.

Sizo’s whole-stuffed fish on the braai

On holiday, I like to cook fresh fish, whole, stuffed, and on the braai. I use hake, which I stuff with peppadews, feta, crispy bacon bits and spinach, finished with a drizzle of olive oil of course, and then covered with slices of lemon and red onion. Wrap it in tin foil and bang it on the braai! (Roughly 12–15 minutes on each side.) Unwrap the foil and season with an extra drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkle of salt and a squeeze of fresh lemon.

 

 

This article was first published in the March 2020 issue of Getaway magazine.
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All prices correct at publication, but are subject to change at each establishment’s discretion. Please check with them before booking or buying.

 






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