Firstly, apologies for going awol in the last few months. But my self imposed sabbatical ended and I resumed work in Jhb.
I’ve been wanting to write about Durban desserts mania from January but in the intervening period, the situations gotten worse. Worse in that there’s new vendors popping up literally every week, I’ve totally lost track of who’s selling what. So, I’ll list the more established ones, which are each worth trying.
Scoop Me s’More:
The brainchild of Fathima Khan, who began making ice cream sandwiches for her sons, before beginning to trade this as it wasn’t offered in the South African market. Scoop has now blossomed into a roaring business and an established brand. Scoop serves ice cream sandwiches, which is basically two cookies joined with ice cream and sprinkled with your choice of treats. Fathima began trading at the Green Hub in Blue Lagoon (which still remains open over weekends) and has expanded to her first full time retail store next to Caminettos Pizzaria in Overport. This is in addition to her presence at many local markets. Ice cream and cookie flavours vary and are all produced by Scoop, so it’s 100% homemade.
Basheerah Motala used to trade under Basheerah by Bliscotti, but despite the name change is a well established presence in Durban. I still recall going for Basheerah’s cupcake making class a good few years ago, when red velvet just came out. (I still use her red velvet cupcake recipe so it’s definitely a winner). Basheerah offers a range of baking products, from her famous biscotti, cakes, mini desserts, to cronuts and churros and chocolate which she often serves up at markets. Her churros are good!
This rather ingenious idea of serving waffles on sticks which can be eaten like ice cream lollies has Fatima Essa as co-founder behind it. It really is easy to eat especially when on the go at a market or picnic, as it eliminates the need for knifes and forks. Fatima also serves up her waffles with various toppings such as strawberries, flake, nutella, fresh cream, m&ms, etc. Waffles on a stick aren’t found at most markets so be sure to follow their social media accounts for pop up venues. We had Wacky Waffles at a family event recently, and I enjoyed creating my own waffle concoctions.
Chilli Chocolate Chefs:
This sister duo of Faatimah and Zainab Paruk are certainly no strangers to the Durban market, and cater both food and desserts to corporate and private events. As I’m focusing on desserts here, will highlight their wide range of cheesecakes (which are sinfully good and include exotic flavours like Baklava and Turkish delights), mini desserts and chocolate brownies. Despite their roaring well deserved success as food caterers, you can still find them at Durban markets. They’ve also brought out a recipe book, called Entertain should you wish to recreate their treats at home.
I remember when Zakeeya Mitha began making and selling macarons from home as a ‘hobby’. Zakeeya dedicated herself to her love of food (by enrolling for a chef’s course) and starting to trade at markets. As with so many home industries, Sugarlicius became a regular feature at Durban’s markets, with Zakeeya’s macarons and macaron ice cream sandwiches proving successful.
Like all of the above, Wicked Donuts is most likely old news to most of you. However, they began primarily trading from I 💚 market, and have recently opened their first retail store in the Pavilion (at the new food court). Wicked Donuts offers a range of donuts with an ever increasing range and if you’re not only after a brand (yes you Krispy Kreme), it’s definitely worth a try for a sinful indulgence.
For Shakes Shake:
This is the brainchild of a group of sisters who decided to enter the relatively untapped milkshake market. Milkshakes are thought up and experimented by the sisters so all milkshakes are original with interesting flavours. They are new to the Durban market scene and still very much in the establishment phase. I’ve not tried these milkshakes yet because they haven’t been regularly operating but I believe this will change soon. Much to look forward to!.
A relatively new option on the scene is Nasreen’s waffles, which unlike waffles on a stick differentiate themselves by being authentic Belgian waffles. They also serve a range of toppings and can be found at various markets, the most regular being the I 💚 market and Rooftop Market. Unfortunately, whenever I’ve popped by they’ve been sold out so I cannot attest to the taste. But if the demand for unbaked waffles (which they also provide) is anything to go by, it won’t disappoint.
You can find each of the above traders on Instagram, where they post details of new products and next trade appearances.
I’m sure there’s a few other new dessert options I’ve missed, being the folk that recently began while I’ve been in Jhb. But, hopefully this summary gives you a good idea of who/what to try over the December holidays. As expected, Durban will be overtaken by both markets and holiday makers so there’ll be ample opportunity to get your dessert fix.
But do remember it’s Summer, so those costumes still need fitting into! 😉
Happy dessert eating!