Hilda Effiong Bassey, popularly known as Hilda Baci, has made history by officially breaking the record for the longest cooking marathon (individual), as confirmed by Guinness World Records. The talented 26-year-old Nigerian chef cooked for an incredible duration of 93 hours 11 minutes, surpassing the previous record of 87 hours 45 minutes set in 2019.
Hilda’s marathon cooking session took place from Thursday 11 May to Monday 15 May, during which she prepared over 100 pots of delicious food. Although she aimed for a 100-hour record, a slight miscalculation during one of her rest breaks resulted in the deduction of nearly seven hours from her total time.
To achieve this extraordinary feat, Hilda meticulously planned a 35-item menu as a guide for each meal she cooked. Her team ensured a steady supply of ingredients throughout the marathon to keep her going strong.
The record-breaking cook-a-thon captivated millions of people, both in Nigeria and beyond, as they followed Hilda’s progress via an Instagram live stream. The overwhelming support crashed the Guinness World Records website for two days due to the enormous influx of traffic.
Throughout her marathon, Hilda adhered to strict rules, including the requirement to have at least two items being prepared or cooked simultaneously. While a sous-chef assisted with prep work and kitchen cleanup, Hilda took sole responsibility for all cooking tasks.
The significance of Hilda’s record extends beyond personal achievement. She aimed to showcase Nigerian cuisine on a global platform and inspire young African women to pursue their dreams. Her passion for her craft and determination to push her limits were evident throughout the remarkable endeavor.
Hilda’s cook-a-thon garnered support from prominent figures in Nigeria, including Vice President Professor Yemi Osinbajo, Lagos State Governor Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu, and award-winning singer Tiwa Savage. Furthermore, Hilda invited the public to savor her freshly cooked meals and donated any leftovers to the Festus Fajemilo Foundation, emphasizing her commitment to feed the less privileged.
Having graduated with a sociology degree, Hilda embarked on a culinary career, drawing inspiration from her mother, Lynda Ndukwe, also a chef. Her talent and dedication led to hosting a television show and emerging victorious in the Jollof Face-off competition, representing Nigeria.
Now, Hilda Baci can proudly add the Guinness World Records title to her list of achievements, solidifying her status as a culinary trailblazer. Congratulations to Hilda for this incredible accomplishment!