rozanne stevens

The Melody of Africa, it sings in my blood…

I grew up on a Outspan citrus farm in South Africa, in the breathtaking Gamtoos Valley of the Eastern Cape. Our farmhouse was situated high up against the hill overlooking this magnificent valley. It was a picture of verdant green patchwork crops, seamed with the bright red clay that makes the valley so fertile, one enveloped by the heady smell of orange blossoms and jasmine in the balmy evenings after a pulsating hot African day.

Some of my earliest food memories include peeling and eating “naartjies” (clementines) in the orange groves and “Brais” (BBQ’s) in the African heat as well as church fetes with old fashioned games like “egg & spoon races”, pancakes, fudge, Malay curry & rice and jelly & custard.

I am lucky to call the melting pot of cultures that is South Africa home. I have been exposed to Indian, Chinese, Italian, Greek, Lebanese and Malay culture and cuisine, all without leaving the country! Combine with with fabulous local fresh produce and you have the vibrant fusion cuisine that is uniquely South African.

I studied law in college where I was selected by the Cape Wine Academy to lecture in food and wine. This very prestigious educational body trained me in all major world cuisines, wine and viniculture.

I moved to Ireland in 1999 where I retrained as a complimentary therapist. As a family, we have always had a keen interest in diet and emerging nutritional trends. I remember growing a kombucha fungus and sprouting seeds and beans and now 20 years later it has gone mainstream! In 2004 I started my health & lifestyle clinic, Green Living. Soon afterwards I went to teach my Green Living classes in Cooks Academy where I went on to be a head tutor and taught for 4 years. In 2009 I launched my own cookery school and 80/20 Cookery School at Miele was born.

A regular on Irish national radio, RTE for many years in 2007 I began contributing weekly to “Today with Pat Kenny”.

I am very proud to be contributing weekly to — fresh fruits and vegetables are such a critical and delicious component of a healthy diet. I do hope you enjoy my recipes.