Nigerian chef Hilda Baci has successfully created a new world record for the longest cooking time after spending more than 4 days in the kitchen. The 27-year-old began the long journey at 15:00 GMT on Thursday and ended at 19:00 GMT when she turned off her cooker.
Hilda tagged the adventure “Cook-a-Thon,” a word coined from the word marathon. She said the journey began five years ago and breaking the record was her biggest aspiration.
“I am glad that I took the bold step to embark on this adventure. I have taken time to prepare for this psychologically and I am proud to finally take on this challenge,” Hilda said at the start of the record-breaking journey. “The cook-a-thon is also an opportunity to tell some of the positive stories that come from Africa through the meals that we make.”
The outstanding chef had planned to cook for 96 hours – exactly four days and end the adventure at 15:00GMT. However, she was persuaded by supporters and friends to make it a round figure of 100 hours. That she did. However, the Guinness World Record said it was still reviewing the evidence before confirming the record.
“We’re aware of this amazing record attempt, we need to review all the evidence first before officially confirming a record,” Guinness World Records stated on its Twitter page.
During the 100 hours, Baci cooked several Nigerian meals, including the popular jollof rice. She also made akara, a popular Nigerian food made from mashed beans. All the meals were handed to invited and uninvited guests cheering the great cook.
According to the rules, the chef could have one assistant at a time and take a five-minute break every hour or the equivalent over several hours. After several hours, she was visibly tired and cold compresses were applied to her head. She also got foot massages during her short breaks, and a Doctor was on the ground to check her vital signs. But her main source of strength was the crowd cheering from the outside and on social media.
Hilda got an overwhelming support
Before the start of the cooking spree, Hilda Baci had asked for the support of Nigerians as she attempts to break a Guinness record. Nigerians of all kinds heard her call and she got more than the support she asked for.
From ordinary Nigerian to top politicians and celebrities visited her during the period. One of the prominent visitors was the Governor of Lagos State, Babajide Sanwolu, who promised to give the chef all the support she needed to succeed.
“Huge congratulations to Chef Hilda Baci on breaking the Guinness World Record for the longest hours spent cooking,” the governor wrote on Twitter. “I had the privilege of visiting and tasting her amazing dishes yesterday. The flavour, passion and dedication she puts into her work are unparalleled.”
The country’s current president Mohamaddu Buhari and president-elect Bola Tinubu also sent messages of encouragement to Hilda while trying to beat the world record. Popular Nigerian musicians were also on the ground to encourage the young chef.
The previous record
Before Monday, Lata Tondon of India holds the record for the longest cooking time with 87 hr 45 mins. The chef created the record on 7 September 2019.
According to Guinness World Record, “Lata is a passionate chef who has worked both in India and London.” She was among the several people that congratulated Hilda for her achievement.