Mthabisi Tshuma, Showbiz Correspondent
AN initiative to preserve Ndebele culture artistically, Ikhekhelethu/Our Cake was launched in style on Saturday night at the Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) in Bulawayo.
Ikhekheluthu/Our Cake is a food exhibition which seeks to celebrate culinary talent.
The exhibition saw the cake-eating culture being fused into the contemporary Ndebele way of life with three talented bakers — Mthandazo Nyoni, Ruth Thandekile Ndiweni and Martha Ndlovu — showcasing cakes reflecting Ndebele culture, its norms and values.
Nyoni’s cake was a resemblance of a traditional Ndebele homestead which included the main house, a kraal and isiphala (granary).
Ndiweni’s cake showcased a typical Nguni homestead setup which even had cows to show the myth muscle of a man in the Ndebele land.
Ndlovu portrayed marriages from when one is courting till they have a family and children who move out and are just a stone throw away from the parents’ homestead.
A panel of judges that included renowned poet Albert Nyathi and songstress Novuyo Seagirl adjudicated the cakes.
But before being adjudicated, the participants took time to brief attendees who included arts legend Phathisa Nyathi on the concept they used to bake their cakes. All their presentations were informative and reflected the much-celebrated culture of the Ndebele people from the history till the modern era.
Founder of the concept, Nqabayezwe Ndlovu fulfilled the initiative’s mantra “Come and have a taste” as all who attended tasted the cakes.
After tasting the cakes, Ndiweni was crowned the winner for her astounding creativity. A soul-touching performance by Thandy Dhlana put the icing on the cake.
The event’s programmes manager, Gift Muteletwa said the proceeds from the cake bake off will be given to an old people’s home which they are set to identify.
At the end, the business community was also urged to invest more in arts as it helps in preservation of culture.
Novuyo Seagirl applauded the cultural diversity shown through the cakes and hoped that the initiative grows bigger. — @mthabisi_mthire.