Pizza is a common Italian dish, but when it hit the streets of Kwa-Thema in Ekurhuleni, it took on a new identity.
Mwari Pizza House, which makes pizzas as we known them, has also developed a kota pizza, which is topped with township street food.
Tshepiso Sibisi, who co-founded the pizza house, told Vutivi News that she wanted to capture the attention of township residents.
“Mwari, which is a Shona word for the source of creation, was started in 2018 with two of my sisters because we couldn’t get employment,” she said.
“We decided to sell pizza because we did not want to sell kotas like everyone around and I really like pizza. At the time we didn’t know how to make pizza, so we went on YouTube and learned the basics such as making dough and the types of sauces needed.”
Sibisi said while there were the usual flavours of like bacon supreme, spinach and feta, Hawaiian, and beef, there were also unique combinations that could only be found at Mwari.
“The Kota pizza is a creative way of incorporating kota and pizza,” she said.
“We also have atchaar pizza, which consists of beef and onion with atchaar as a topping. We also use food that township people are used to eating such as mogodu, and we play around with them to bring about a unique experience.”
The aim of the kota pizza was to push the boundaries and give residents a new taste sensation, Sibisi said.
“We sometimes alternate on the toppings, but they are usually the same that you would find in kotas like chips, garlic, polony, cheese and sauces,” she said.
“Here is a place of creativity and that is why we play around with so many flavours and try to come up with flavours that are out of the box.”
Sibisi told Vutivi News that the community was in love with the kota pizza.
“It baffles their minds as to whether we added pizza to the kota or whether we added kota to the pizza, and when the conversation around the mystery reaches its heights there is a lot of positivity surrounding it,” she said.
“It is who we are, and the business represents the township culture where young people must feel at home, and where old people must feel nostalgic.”