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Street Foodz Naija 3: Chef Scholastica cooks her way to fame, fortune

By Guardian Nigeria
22 October 2022   |   4:03 am
Scholastica Joseph has emerged winner of the third edition of Street Foodz Naija, a cooking reality show produced by FoodBay TV. Chef Scholastica, as she’s fondly called, beat five other finalists to become the first female winner of the competition.

Wins N10m Cash, N10m Worth Of Prizes
Scholastica Joseph has emerged winner of the third edition of Street Foodz Naija, a cooking reality show produced by FoodBay TV. Chef Scholastica, as she’s fondly called, beat five other finalists to become the first female winner of the competition.

Sponsored by Peak Milk, La Casera, Tiger Beer and Metropolitan School of Business Management, the grand finale of the show, which held at the Muri Okunola Park, Victoria Island, saw Chef Scholastica smile home with the grand prize of N10m cash, and N10m worth of prizes, including training at the Metropolitan School of Business Management, United Kingdom; all expense paid trip to Dubai and culinary scholarship at HBM.

Meanwhile, the first runner-up, Abraham Nwanuah (Chef Blue) got N5million cash, while the second runner up Eze Lilian Nneka (Chef Lily z) was presented with N3million cash.

“It’s so unreal,” excited Chef Scholastica said in a chat with reporters after her emergence, adding, “My friend told me about it and encouraged me to apply. I wasn’t serious at first, but when I applied and got selected, it was mind-blowing; it is the most educational show,” she quipped.

On how she feel being the first female to with the competition, the Akwa Ibom State native said, “I’m so excited. This is so unreal. I cannot express how I feel right now; I still feel like I’m dreaming,” she enthused.

She continued: “My creativity level, having participated in this show, is so high; I cannot even express it. Right now, I’m thinking about the training; I will go for it in Dubai. I’m going to get more knowledge so I can run my diner.”

Recalling how she got into cooking, she said, “My mum and I were chased out of the house by my step father, so I had to rely on selling food to survive. I used to sell food bowls; I started doing that when I was between 16 and 17. So, I had to get UNILAG diploma form and that was how I was able to pay my fees. The days I didn’t have lectures, I will take more orders to pile up money. That’s how I was able to pay my fees, and get a better accommodation.”

Speaking at the event, the CEO of Maxima Media Group, owners of FoodBay TV, Femi Ogundoro, said the vision behind Street Foodz Naija is to put Nigerian street foods on the global map.

“Street Foodz Naija is pretty much about celebrating superstars like the contestants that we had on this show this season. Trust me, Nigeria is blessed. The journey has been very interesting; they have also been able to justify why we are doing what we are doing here today. You also need to be an ambassador for African food; be proud of it anywhere,” he charged the contestants.

On the effort by FoodBay TV to reposition Nigerian dishes for the international market, he said, “We’re not asking for a seat at the table anymore; we’re constructing our own table. We’re not going to be looking at the foreign media to dictate what we do with our food anymore; we will tell them how to feel about food and how to see it. But it starts with you and I understanding who we are as a people. We are Nigerians. Let’s take pride in what we have, in who we are as a people. Let’s not be ashamed of our jollof rice.”

Ogundoro, who believes Nigeria can compete favourably on international level through our street foods, said, “We’re celebrating burgers, we’re celebrating tacos, shawarma, but we need to do more with our stuff. We need to do more with our Agege Bread and Ewa Agoyin, and that’s what FoodBay TV is all about. Let’s make it exciting enough, let’s educate people about it and then put African food on the world food map.”

Hosted by Do2tun and Elozonam, the grand finale was spiced with musical performances by music artistes, including Eloswag of Big Brother Naija.

It would be recalled that the auditioning for the Street Foodz Naija season 3 kicked of in Abuja for the Northern region. The event, which was spiced with musical performances by The Cavemen, picked six contestants. From Abuja, the show moved to Enugu, where another six contestants were selected.

Like in Abuja and Enugu, the Lagos audition paved the way for 19 contestants to battle for six slots available in the region. They were all given 20 minutes to prepare any food of their choice on the spot. The judges — Chef Fregz, Toyin Lawani and Noble Igwe— alongside the host, Elozonam, had tough time pruning the number down. In the end, six chefs were selected to join the other 16. Singer Crayon, who treated guests to the best of his repertoire, wrapped up the evening.

The 18 for this season include Abraham Nwanuah Chijindu, Ajasa Balikis Tomilayo, Alimi Ayo Rukayat, Amina Nwakaego Nwabuezeh, Chisom Ann-Indira Achara, Eze Prince Chinecherem, Ezechi Chinenye Racheal, Eze Lilian Nneka, Gerald Ekpenyong and Halima Umar Atana. Others are Iluobe Ofure Happiness, Jennifer Edoziem, Kalu Chinenye Ukpai, komolafe Janet Oluwabukola, Nelson Edegbai Ogun, Odunze Sonachukwu Grace, Omobonike Emuze, Scholastica Joseph and Olushola Elijah Davids.