Home All Things Food FOOD Karishma’s perfect Heritage Day – sharing curry with her family in Durban

Karishma’s perfect Heritage Day – sharing curry with her family in Durban

Karishma Ramdev is the only Top 10 Miss South Africa finalist representing KwaZulu-Natal at the 2020 Miss South Africa pageant which takes place on Saturday, 24 October.

A qualified doctor, Ramdev talks about her delight at the fact that she will be spending Heritage Day back in Durban and tells us about her Miss South Africa journey the second time around.

How you will be spending Heritage Day?
I’m flying to Durban after such a long time away and will be spending the day with my family. I am so excited to see them.

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What does the day mean to you?
I feel it’s a day where our entire rainbow nation can celebrate our different cultures. Coming from an Indian community, I’ve grown up surrounded by the warmest people who will go above and beyond for anyone they know and I am so proud to be a part of it – not to mention the food we make is out of this world.

What would be your perfect Heritage Day meal and who would you share it with?
I would choose a mutton curry with melting potatoes and basmati rice. My mom Komla is the queen of curries and there is nothing that equates to that meal when she makes it. I would share it with my family and friends – it makes me so happy when people look forward to eating curries.

Being a Top 10 finalist has now sunk in, has the journey been what you expected? What has surprised you?
Having been a finalist in 2018, I had an idea of what to expect from the competition but this time round has been beyond my wildest dreams. We have done so many things that I wouldn’t have even have thought of – lunching with Rolene Strauss and having sundowners with Amy Kleinhans. We visited a school in Khayelitsha and spent time with the children. I learnt so much about communities outside of my own and I’m so grateful for the opportunity, as these experiences have changed my life more than I could have possibly imagined.

How has Cape Town been and what have you been up to?
Cape Town has been spoiling us with amazing weather and the most beautiful scenery. I have been feeling so relaxed these last few days listening to the ocean. We have been shooting some amazing things, sightseeing, watching sunsets and eating incredible food.
We visited Robben Island and it was an incredibly moving experience, one that I don’t have words for. What I will say is that I feel so proud to be a South African.

Is this a first visit for you and/or what are your impressions of the Mother City?
No, it’s not my first visit but every time I come here, I always think about how I can’t wait until I get to come again. I’m a person who loves beautiful scenery and Cape Town gives me exactly that with the right amount of city life so I LOVE it here.

You are now really getting to know your fellow competitors – any funny stories or anecdotes about them that you can share?
Oh wow. Yes, we have had many laughs together, many heart to hearts and have made memories to last a lifetime. I love Aphelele’s laugh, Busisiwe’s calm and collected nature, Chantelle’s eyes, Jordan’s heart, Lebogang’s freckles, Melissa’s smile (oh my word), Natasha’s bubbliness, Shudufhadzo’s work ethic and Thato’s humour (she makes me laugh every day)

Anything else you would like to add?
This has been the most memorable experience of my life and I feel like I’ve learnt everything I wanted to but I’ve received even more than I ever expected or dreamt of.

Miss South Africa 2020 will be crowned at a spectacular and entertainment-packed event – which takes place in Cape Town on Saturday, October 24, from 17h00 – and which will be screened live on M-Net and Mzansi Magic and streamed for an international audience.

Miss South Africa is presented by Weil Entertainment in association with M-Net, Mzansi Magic, Sun International, Brand South Africa and the City of Cape Town.

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Karishma’s Mutton curry 



1 kg mutton

Sunflower oil – enough to cover the bottom of the pot

2 cinnamon sticks

2 cloves

1 elachi

½ tsp fennel seeds

1 star anise

¼ tsp cumin seeds

8 methi seeds

½ tsp mustard seeds

6 curry leaves

1 large handful of fresh coriander leaves

1 large onion – chopped into small pieces

3- 4 potatoes (cut into halves or quarters)

3 tomatoes

1 heaped tbsp of mixed ginger and garlic

Salt to taste

2 Tbsp chilli powder

½ tsp turmeric powder

½ tsp cumin powder

¼ tsp coriander powder



Put stove on medium to medium heat; add the sunflower oil to the pot

Add all the spices – cinnamon sticks, cloves, elachi, fennel seeds, star anise, cumin seeds and mustard seeds and fry until they start crackling.

Add onions and braise until translucent

With the onion, add half the curry leaves.

Take pot off stove

The add the ginger, garlic, masala and turmeric (be careful not to burn your masala as it will ruin the base of your curry!)

Add the mutton and the salt and then put the pot back on stove and allow it to cook for two minutes for the meat to brown.

In a blender, blitz the rest of the curry leaves together with the dhania and tomatoes and then add to the pot

Add the cumin powder and coriander powder and cook for 45 minutes adding boiling water whenever the curry reduces into a thick mixture

Add the cut potatoes into the pot after 45 minutes (I chop mine into quarters and microwave it for 6 minutes in hot water before adding in order to cook quicker)

Allow to continue cooking until the potatoes are soft and any excess water has evaporated and the curry has reduced into a thick gravy.

Granish with chopped fresh coriander

Eat with freshly made basmati rice or roti.


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