South Africans have been cooking more since the lockdown, survey says

Business Insider SA
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  • An independent survey conducted by Pick n Pay revealed that the lockdown not only resulted in a baking craze, but saw more people develop an interest in cooking.
  • The survey included 1,000 correspondents, with 90% saying they became more interested in making home-cooked meals since the beginning of the lockdown.
  • 93% said they have been experimenting with new recipes.  
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Not only did the national lockdown made bakers out of almost everyone, but it also motivated South Africans to get creative with their cooking, trying out new recipes to improve their skills or to just add something new to their repertoire.

This was revealed in an independent survey conducted by Pick n Pay – which is this year's title sponsor of the popular TV series MasterChef SA – aimed at determining how much people enjoy being in the kitchen and experimenting with recipes.

The survey, which included 1,000 respondents, showed that people indeed developed an interest in making home-cooked meals, especially during the lockdown.

"The start of lockdown sparked a passion in trying new recipes as people had to stay home and were unable to visit their favourite restaurants.

"We initially went through the baking craze but noticed an appetite among customers experimenting with different fresh foods," said Group Executive: Marketing at Pick n Pay Andrew Mills.

Of the 1,000 respondents, 93% said they enjoy experimenting with new recipes, with popular TV shows such as MasterChef being the source of inspiration. Ninety percent said the beginning of the lockdown forced them to cook more home-cooked meals.

According to the findings, the most common reason for experimenting with new recipes was mainly to improve cooking skills (32%), wanting to try new dishes or food (26%), and the desire to make delicious food for friends and family (18%). The remaining 11% were just looking to escape the boredom of cooking the same thing.

"While visiting a restaurant is always a treat, it seems South Africans do agree that nothing beats a delicious home-cooked meal, especially when shared with family and friends," says Mills.

Here's what else the survey revealed:

  • The general pattern is to try new recipes weekly (30%)
  • Whenever inspiration hits (30%)
  • Once or twice a month (24%)
  • Nearly one in 10 of the survey’s respondents said they experiment with new recipes daily

Mills says Pick n Pay retailers are seeing more foodies visit stores to get fresh ingredients on their journey from being a home cook to a "master chef".

"This year's MasterChef SA season has been really exciting because it included many locally inspired recipes and twists so South Africans had the opportunity to 'learn new tricks' to turn simple dishes into an exciting food experience," said Mills.

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