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Our top 4 must-tries by Zola Nene

Zola Nene is a household name in the culinary world. Impress your friends with 4 of her yummy recipes.

Pulled pork shoulder 

Serves 6-8 • Total time 4 hours


1 Tbsp ground cumin 
1 Tbsp ground coriander 
2kg boneless pork shoulder 
5 spring onions, chopped 
3cm piece fresh ginger, sliced 
1 green chilli 
¼ cup brown sugar 
2 cups apple juice 
1 cup water 
2 Tbsp olive oil
Salt and milled black pepper 


  1. Preheat oven to 160°C. 
  2. Mix together the cumin and coriander, then rub all over the pork. 
  3. Transfer the meat to a roasting dish. Add the spring onions, ginger, garlic, chilli, sugar, apple juice and water. 
  4. Drizzle the pork with olive oil and season. Roast uncovered for 4 hours or until the pork is fork tender. 


Roast leg of lamb 

Serves 6-8 • Total time 1 hour 20-30 minutes


2kg leg of lamb, bone in 
Salt and milled black pepper 
4 cloves garlic, crushed 
2 sprigs rosemary, chopped 
Handful fresh mint, chopped 
1 lemon, zested and juiced 
¼ cup olive oil 


  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C. 
  2. Place the lamb into a large roasting dish and season generously with salt and pepper. 
  3. Mix the garlic, rosemary, mint, lemon zest, lemon juice and olive oil and rub this all over the surface of the lamb. 
  4. Roast the lamb, uncovered for 1 hour and 15 minutes. If you like your lamb a little more well done, leave it in for an extra 20-30 minutes. 
  5. Leave lamb to rest, wrapped in foil, for at least 20 minutes before carving. 

Aromatic Greens 

Serves 4 • Total time 10 minutes


2 large bunches Swiss Chard 
¼ cup olive oil 
1 clove garlic, thinly sliced 
½ tsp chilli flakes 
1cm piece fresh ginger, cut into matchsticks 
2 tsp cumin seeds 
2 tsp black mustard seeds 
Salt and milled black pepper  


  1. Wash the Swiss chard thoroughly in clean water, then remove the stalks from the leaves and roughly chop the leaves. 
  2. In a cold pan, add the oil, garlic, chilli flakes, ginger, cumin and mustard seeds, then place over heat and allow to warm up gently and sizzle until the aromatics release their flavour. 
  3. Add the chopped leaves and stir until they are wilted: the water from washing the leaves will create enough steam to cook the greens sufficiently. Season to taste. 


Honeycomb cream pancakes 

Serves 4 • Total time 1 hour


For the honeycomb

100g castor sugar 
¼ cup golden syrup 
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda  

For the pancakes

280g cake flour, sifted 
2½ cups milk
½ cup water 
2 large eggs 
30ml sunflower oil  

For the filling

2 cups cream 
¼ cup icing sugar 
1 tsp vanilla extract  


  1. To make the honeycomb, line a baking tray with baking paper or greased foil.
  2. Place the sugar and syrup in a saucepan and stir to mix. Do not stir it again but allow it to gently melt over low heat. 
  3. Once dissolved, bring it to a simmer for about 3 minutes until it turns the colour of map syrup, then remove from the heat whisk in the bicarbonate of soda and allow the mixture to froth up. 
  4. Tip the mixture onto a lined baking tray and allow it to set. Once set, bas it into small pieces. 
  5. To make the pancakes, combine the flour, milk, water, eggs and oil in a bowl. 
  6. Heat a lightly greased non-stick frying pan and then ladle enough batter to make a thin layer. Lift and tilt the pan to spread the batter evenly. 
  7. Cook until bubbles appear on the surface and then flip over and cook on the other side for a minute. Slide the cooked pancake onto a plate and keep warm under a tea towel while you make the rest. 
  8. For the filling, combine the cream, icing sugar and vanilla extract in a bowl and whisk to soft peaks. Fold in a large handful of the crushed honeycomb. 
  9. When ready to serve, spoon some filling onto each pancake and either fold in half or roll up like a cigar. 

Words by: Chad January
Photography: Zhann Solomons

Also read: Zola Nene reflects on milestones and latest award

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