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Hilda Bassey, Nigerian chef, cooks for 100 hours in world record attempt


Steph Busari/CNN

Nigerian chef, Hilda Bassey, cooks for 100 hours in an attempt to set a world record.


Nigerian chef Hilda Effiong Bassey has become a national sensation after cooking non-stop for 100 hours in an attempt to set a world record.

The chef, known on social media as Hilda Baci, started cooking on Thursday and continued until Monday – creating more than 55 recipes and over 100 meals designed to showcase the best of Nigerian cuisine in the marathon cooking session.

The Guinness World Records Committee still needs to confirm that all their criteria have been met and whether Bassey will become the record holder.

The record to break – 87 hours and 45 minutes – was set in 2019 by Indian chef Lata Tondon, who sent a message of support to Bassey during his attempt.

Bassey told CNN she was motivated to attempt the record because she wants to put Nigerian food on the map.

“Nigerian cuisine is the best out there,” she said. “The more recipes spread, the more people will be willing to try it. Nigerian food is such a comfort food,” she added.

Despite the lack of sleep throughout her cooking tour in Lagos, Bassey remained in high spirits and could be seen dancing and waving to her fans who turned out in droves to support her.

One man, Uduak Obong, told CNN he took an overnight bus journey, traveling hundreds of kilometers to reach the venue in Lagos.

“I drove 12 hours to be right here to support my sister, my friend. She’s just amazing,” he said.

Enioluwa Adeoluwa, a media personality who also served as MC for the cookathon, told CNN: “Whenever a Nigerian does something, we all come out to show support… We’re super excited. She’s doing an amazing job.”

“She opens the door to the African food market and shows all the youths out here that if you can dream it, you can achieve it,” said actor and Nollywood star Damilola Ogunsi.

Celebrities including musician Tiwa Savage and local politicians visited Bassey during the cooking challenge.

Bassey told CNN she almost gave up on the first day, but after beating the previous record, she decided to aim for 100 hours.

“The first day was the hardest. I was ready to give up after 6 hours. I feel like a miracle happened and somehow I got to this. The support has been incredible,” she said.

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