South Africans are reeling from shock after the family of legendary actress Shaleen Surtie-Richards confirmed her death. The 66-year-old was found dead in a Cape Town guest house this morning.
While details about her death are still sketchy, it is understood that Surtie-Richards was in Cape Town to film on the Afrikaans telenovela, Arendsvlei. The actress had many health problems, including diabetes and asthma.
Surtie-Richards is perhaps most famously known for her role as Fiela in the 1988 film, Fiela se Kind. She also played Ester “Nenna” Willemse for 18 seasons of M-Net’s first hit soapie, Egoli: Place of Gold.
Born in Upington in the Northern Cape in 1955, Surtie-Richards-Richards took South Africa by storm, winning people over with her acting skills and warm personality. What few know about the actress is that she was also a qualified kindergarten teacher, and taught between 1974 and 1984.
Surtie-Richards also appeared in shows such as 7de Laan and Generations, and even hosted her own television show, simply titled Shaleen, on M-Net in 2000.
While many knew her from her television appearances, Surtie-Richards has also graced theatre stages the world over – from South Africa to London – and worked with theatre-makers such as the acclaimed Athol Fugard and Pieter Dirk-Uys.
The actress and television personality snagged 40 accolades in her lifetime, including a Fleur du Cap Award for her 2008 performance in Shirley Valentine.
Shaleen’s Cape Malay curry
We remember “Nenna” with one of her delicious recipes for a Cape Malay curry served in an Argilla bowl.
- 1kg lamb or beef knuckles
- 1 finely chopped onion
- 3 to 4 whole cloves
- 2 to 3 cardamom seeds
- 1 can of whole Roma tomatoes and some juice from the can
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon fine cumin
- 1 teaspoon fine coriander
- 2 to 3 bay leaves
- 2 to 3 teaspoons ground ginger
- 2 crushed garlic
- 125ml coconut milk
- 1 teaspoon fresh, finely chopped coriander leaves
- salt and pepper to taste
- mixed vegetables (optional)
- Place meat in a medium-sized Gourmet Argilla bowl. Mix the rest of the ingredients and pour over the meat.
- Bake at 180 degrees with the lid on for an hour and a half to two hours, or until the meat is tender.
- Serve with rice and garnish with coriander leaves.