The South African comedy scene hasn’t been the same since the late nineties when Chris Forrest began his career. His quick wit and dry sense of humour with an intelligent twist has made him one of the country’s most popular comedians.
We decided it was time to get to know Chris Forrest a little better in an exclusive online Parting Shot. We’re delighted to hear that he’s ‘cooking up’ something new too…
Words: Bronwen Watson
1. Honestly, as South Africa’s first Celebrity Masterchef, are you still inspired to cook?
Since the show, I really enjoy cooking and baking, so I’ve been doing plenty of it. I’ve even started developing a couple of “signature dishes”, which is cool because I get asked to do cooking demo’s now and it’s good to look like you know what you’re doing.
2. Spill the beans – During the show, was there an ingredient that was so foreign to you that you had no clue what to do with it?
All of them…. I think the vine leaves was the ingredient that really had me in a panic. I’d barely tried eating them, never mind cooking with them. I was clueless and did some subtle experiments whilst making the dish – they edited out the batch I put in the oven….
3. What did you decide to make with it?
I made a seafood risotto and served it wrapped in the vine leaves as dolmades, with a hollandaise sauce (which was my first ever attempt at making one, might I add). It wasn’t much to look at, but tasted fantastic, if I do say so myself.
4. Which is more nerve wracking – an invention test on Celebrity Masterchef or a difficult audience?
Give me a difficult audience any day. The pressure that you feel on Masterchef is absolutely huge. The intensity really doesn’t come across on camera. I always used to judge the contestants when they cried on camera, but being there, I suddenly understood completely. Add to that, that I was way out of my comfort zone and it becomes really tough. That said, it was probably one of the more fun things I’ve ever done in my whole life.
5. Being a comedian or a dad, which has taught you more about life?
Wow, great question! I’m going to give an answer that perhaps doesn’t measure up and say both, in different ways.
Being a comedian has given me the opportunity to travel to many places and meet many people, which has taught me a lot about the world out there and the people who live in it, which has changed my perspective completely.
Being a dad has taught me a lot about myself and also made me more aware (and grateful) of everything my parents did for me.
6. Whom or what amuses you most?
As strange (or maybe cliched) as it may sound, I think my daughter. Besides being endlessly, and incredibly, cute, I love to see the world through her eyes and how she marvels at the simplest things.
There are also many comics who I really enjoy, both on and off stage too (too many to mention here).
7. When you feel the need to escape the city, where do you venture out to?
I go out to the Cradle of Humankind a few times a week to ride a bicycle. It’s brilliant, on any given day you might see monkeys, baboons, lions, zebras, warthogs, bison (really), eland, ostrich and a tiger. Besides that it’s great to be out in the open, and being on the bike is really good for thinking and introspection. I also quite like going to Cape Town or the Drakensberg.
8. What’s next on your list of things to accomplish in your life?
I’m going to try to be a good dad and not mess up my child completely. I’m also in the process of mixing my old passion (comedy) with a new one (cooking), by doing a show that combines the two in a way that I don’t think has ever been done before. I’ve joined forces with one of the Masterchef judges – Peter Goffe Wood. Watch this space!