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South African celebrity chef Lentswe Bhengu-Mafoko has died

South Africa is mourning the passing of renowned Chef Lentswe Bhengu-Mafoko, who passed away on March 1, 2023. The family of the late chef announced his passing and requested privacy during this difficult time.

In a statement released on Twitter, the family wrote: “It is with great sadness that we acknowledge the untimely passing of our beloved son and brother Lentswe Bhengu-Mafoko, fondly known to the media and his culinary family as Chef Lentswe.”

South African celebrity chef Lentswe Bhengu-Mafoko has died

Sources close to the family have confirmed that Chef Bhengu-Mafoko passed away on Tuesday evening at Sandton Mediclinic in Johannesburg after a short illness. However, the nature of the illness that led to his passing has not been disclosed.

Chef Lentswe Bhengu-Mafoko was born and raised in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. He discovered his passion for cooking at the age of eight and went on to graduate from the Culinary Academy in the Cape Winelands. He quickly became one of the most celebrated chefs in the country, known for his unique blend of emotion and fine dining.

He was a sought-after chef, cooking at food festivals, events, and expos across the country. His talent and passion for cooking led him to host a popular TV show titled “Africa on a Plate.” He was also set to launch a cookbook of the same name next year, which had been highly anticipated by his fans and followers.

The passing of Chef Bhengu-Mafoko has shocked the nation, and messages of condolences have been pouring in for his family. Many have taken to social media to express their grief and pay tribute to the late chef, who touched the lives of many with his culinary skills and infectious personality.

Chef Bhengu-Mafoko’s unique approach to cooking, which blended emotion with fine dining, was widely appreciated by food enthusiasts across the country. His ability to create innovative dishes that showcased the diversity and richness of African cuisine made him a beloved figure in the culinary industry.

Despite his success, Chef Bhengu-Mafoko remained humble and grounded, always willing to share his knowledge and experience with aspiring chefs. His passion for cooking was contagious, and he inspired many to pursue their dreams and reach for the stars.

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The passing of Chef Bhengu-Mafoko has left a void in the culinary industry that will be hard to fill. His legacy will live on, however, through his cookbook and TV show, which will continue to inspire future generations of chefs and food enthusiasts.

The loss of such a talented and passionate chef is a reminder of how fragile life can be and how important it is to cherish every moment. As we mourn the passing of Chef Bhengu-Mafoko, we are reminded of the impact that he had on our lives and the many lives that he touched through his passion for cooking.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of Chef Bhengu-Mafoko during this difficult time. May his soul rest in peace, and may his memory continue to inspire us all.

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South African Chef opportunities

South Africa is a country with a rich culinary history, influenced by a variety of cultures and cuisines. As a result, the food scene in South Africa is diverse and exciting, making it an excellent place to work as a chef. In this article, we will explore what it’s like to work as a chef in South Africa, including the culinary scene, job opportunities, and the challenges that come with working in the industry.

Culinary Scene in South Africa

South African cuisine is a blend of different influences, from the indigenous people to the Dutch, British, Indian, and Malaysian cultures that have all left their mark on the country’s food. Traditional South African dishes include braai (barbecue), biltong (dried meat), bobotie (minced meat with spices and fruit), and boerewors (sausage). These dishes are often accompanied by chakalaka (spicy vegetable relish) and pap (porridge made from maize meal).

In recent years, South Africa has seen an explosion of new and innovative restaurants that have put the country on the global culinary map. Cape Town, in particular, has become a foodie destination, with a thriving restaurant scene that attracts locals and tourists alike. Many of these restaurants focus on using locally-sourced ingredients and incorporate traditional South African flavors into their dishes.

Job Opportunities

As a chef in South Africa, there are many job opportunities available. The most common places to work are in hotels, restaurants, and catering companies. There are also opportunities to work as a private chef for wealthy families or to start your own restaurant or catering business.

One of the unique aspects of working as a chef in South Africa is the emphasis on training and education. The South African Chefs Association (SACA) offers a variety of training programs and certifications to help chefs improve their skills and advance their careers. Additionally, there are a number of culinary schools throughout the country, including the prestigious Capsicum Culinary Studio, which offer formal training programs in cooking and hospitality.


Working as a chef in South Africa comes with its own set of challenges. One of the biggest challenges is the long and unpredictable hours. Chefs are often required to work late nights, weekends, and holidays. Additionally, the industry is highly competitive, and chefs must constantly be adapting to new culinary trends and techniques to stay relevant.

Another challenge facing chefs in South Africa is the high cost of ingredients, particularly for imported items. This can make it difficult for restaurants and chefs to offer high-quality dishes at affordable prices, which can impact business profitability.


Working as a chef in South Africa can be an exciting and rewarding career path. With a diverse culinary scene and a growing demand for quality food, there are many opportunities available for chefs. However, it’s important to be aware of the challenges that come with working in the industry, such as long hours and high costs. With the right training and determination, however, a career as a chef in South Africa can be fulfilling and successful.

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