This Mitchells Plain man went from being a cleaner to a sous-chef at one of the country’s top restaurants.
Ebrahiem du Toit has flipped the script on his life story and showed that nothing is impossible if you believe.
The young man who grew up in Tafelsig recalls a dark time in his life where he was serving drugs on the streets instead of food.
“Growing up wasn’t easy, my mother was a prostitute and my daddy was apparently shot dead,” he tells the Daily Voice.
“I lived with my grandma, and I remember a time when I went to school and all I could think of was our home life.
“There wasn't even food to take to school, so I started selling drugs to better our lives.”
Du Toit said he found himself tussen die vier hoeke at the age of 17 after he was arrested for drug possession.
But after his two-day stay in prison, he started to clean up his act“
"My friend told me about the Test Kitchen and said I must at least try to speak to them and explain why things are the way it is.
“I then got a job as a cleaner in the scullery at the restaurant and worked my way up to be recognised because I wanted to change.”
He says his childhood memories of hunger pains, and seeing how food brings people together in the restaurant is what inspired him to become a chef.
“My boss then blessed me and sent me to the culinary school in Observatory and I eventually became the senior sous-chef.”
Ebrahiem says he loves cooking huiskos like bredies and lang souse, so that he can share it with the less privileged.
The married father of two, who currently works at the Test Kitchen in Johannesburg, said even though the next step in his career would be head chef, his heart desires to open his own business where he can teach kids like himself about the food industry.
“I want to invest time in my people and try to create opportunities for the people that come from backgrounds like mine, there is more out there.”