Cooking up inspiration: David Boyter and Glen Bo

David Boyter and Glen Bo
I have a confession…I have become a food groupie! Is that even possible? I guess it’s not surprising knowing my track record with all things food. After meeting the owners of Durban’s new comedy club come bistro restaurant “Camden”; David Boyter and Glen Bo have become my new muses of inspiration.

These two guys have so much enthusiasm, and pursue their passions with “just do it” attitudes; in my mind, I think they are the best chefs to start off Stuffed-Feeling’s new “Cooking up inspiration”. Their journeys into food are so different; David’s food revelation came during his Grade 10 Bio exam, where he decided to drop out of school and go straight into hospitality studies. He studied at FET College, and after graduating, continued his studies and learning at Valley of a Thousand Hills. He interned at Aubergine, under Chris Black; who David insists played a big part towards his experience and laying the foundations in his career. “When I studied at a Valley of a Thousand hills, I also learnt a lot from Chef Dixie, who is a wizard in cooking,” says David. Glen soon followed that comment with; “When you meet Chef Dixie; it’s like meeting Gandalf!” Glen on the other hand, has a different story; his careers into hospitality, comedy and anything else he has been passionate about, all happened through him “trying it out” and realising he was actually good at them. Glen’s always been keen to learn practically from people and is very hands on with everything he takes on. His first experience of having people pay for the food he cooked was when he was managing a Gastro pub in the UK, and they needed a chef for the night; Glen got stuck in the kitchen, and from there he continued to pursue his passion for cooking.
Despite their different journeys, their families have always been big into cooking. David’s earliest memory of food, was when he was a baby sleeping in the middle of the kitchen while his Mom baked and cooked around him. One of his favourite family meals is his Mom’s pizza; freshly made dough, different toppings and the time and effort put into each pizza. Glen’s childhood memories are of him helping his Dad at potjiekos competitions; his Dad’s potjies are one of his favourite family meals, along with his Mom’s lamb knuckle stew (which is engrained as one of his childhood food memories).  
Glen and Dave met vicariously through other people; but the telling moment of their budding friendship and partnership started when David ran The Heritage (in Hillcrest) and asked Glen to do a show. They soon realised how similar their work ethics were; they both worked hard, had similar ideas and found it easy to trust each other. Soon after this gig, Glen came back to David with the idea of Camden. Starting this journey hasn’t been smooth sailing and one of the biggest challenges they’ve encountered are people with no souls, a lot of “stupid people” and the general disregard for restaurateurs. They both advise; when you start your own restaurant, it is extremely intense; you have to be consistent, be timeous and always execute the best. One of their highs, since starting Camden, was having Eat Out critics give them great reviews and enjoyed every morsel served.
It is evident from their experience, that whatever you choose to do, you should put everything into it and follow your passion. They share; “It is important to stay authentic and true to yourself; you don’t have to give up your day job to pursue your passions. If you’re passionate about cooking, cater for small events, sell your food at the Saturday markets or just get satisfaction out of the food you cook for your family and the people you have over. These small acts are you living out your passions.” No matter how hard it gets when you are pursuing a goal or even your passion, David says; “I’ve never stopped; don’t stop, get up and just keep going. It does get tough, but you just have to pull through.”

Quick questions:

  •  If you are not working, what are you doing?
David: I am a professional BMX rider; it’s one of my other passions.
(David will be running an event on Saturday, 23 August at Freedom Trails, Assagay (Hillcrest), where the main event will take place in the evening, bands will be playing, comedy shows will take place and picnic baskets will be made – there is something for everyone).
Glen: I enjoy digital and social media, I write a lot, listen to music, but most of all I enjoy sitting back watching a great series.
  • What is your favourite meal to make:
David: Low GI bread toasted with crunchy Black Cat peanut butter, honey cashews and honey.
Glen: Steak with a red wine port reduction, my Moms sweet potatoes and green beans.
  • Favourite kitchen appliance?
David: My cast iron pan
Glen: My food processor and butcher knife.
  • Motto in the kitchen/in general?
David: If it is too hot, get out – you need to suck it up in the kitchen.
Glen: For comedy: DBK – Don’t be kak!
         For the kitchen: Sear and crunch – everything needs to sear and my Dad always used to say everything needs a little crunch.
  • Who is your chef hero?
David: Chef Dixie from Valley of a Thousand Hills and Chef Chris Black from aubergine.
Glen: My Dad; he was a chef in the army and he is the most critical of my food, most of my highlights of my life are cooking with him at the potjiekos events. The other hero is Gordon Ramsay.
  • Complete the sentence: I believe food is…
David: The mood to every soul.
Glen: an art form you can consume and it ends up consuming you.

Recipe from David and Glen

Fresh Pasta
600g Bread flour
6 eggs
10ml Salt
  • Make a well with the flour and salt. Crack the eggs and pour them in the middle of the well.
  • Use your finger and mix the egg into the flour moving your finger in a circular motion from the inside of the well, out into the flour; mixing the ingredients in this manner until in a dough consistency.
  • Knead the dough quickly until firm and flour is kneaded through.
  • Rest in the fridge for an hour.
  • Roll out with a wine bottle/rolling pin/ pasta machine (set 3) until thin.
  • Cut into tagliatelle.
  • Boil in salted and oiled water for 3 minutes or until el dente.
  • Throw blob of butter, basil pesto and season with salt and pepper to taste.
1 Red Pepper
10ml Vodka
10 Basil Leaves
20 – 30ml Olive Oil
50 – 60g Parmesan
20ml Lemon Juice
  • Roast the red pepper in 180 degree oven for about 15 minutes.
  • Once the red pepper is roasted and soft, pop it in a food processor, along with the basil leaves and dash of vodka.
  • Blitz it together.
  • Add the olive oil, while blitzing the ingredients together.
  • Finish off with lots of grated Parmesan cheese and squeeze of lemon juice.
  • Pour into a glass jar and keep refrigerated.
  •  Note: fresh pesto keeps for about a week.