‘The Modern Nanay’ shares her recipe for success

RAZZLE-DAZA - Pat-P Daza - The Philippine Star
�The Modern Nanay� shares her recipe for success
Connh Cruz, more popularly known as ‘the modern nanay,’ began her ‘influencer journey’ during the 2020 pandemic lockdown to keep herself productive. She uploaded videos of herself cooking using her own recipes. To her surprise, the number of followers she had kept growing exponentially. To date, she has over 5.5 million Facebook followers and seven million TikTok followers.

She is a certified content creator who has over 5.5 million followers on Facebook and more than seven million followers on TikTok. She is Connh Cruz, more popularly known as “the modern nanay,” the term she herself coined to emphasize that she’s a cook who uses modern kitchen appliances and gadgets to be more efficient.

Connh began her “influencer journey” during the 2020 pandemic lockdown to keep herself productive, uploading videos of herself cooking using her own recipes. To her surprise, the number of followers she had kept growing exponentially. And even though she was connecting with thousands of admirers because of her simple and authentic dishes, she enrolled in the Center for Asian Culinary Studies in 2022 to improve her cooking skills. Little did she know that what was once just a hobby would become quite the lucrative business venture.

Prior to becoming a content creator, she helped her husband Sol Cruz run their meat shop business. Unfortunately, the pandemic happened, shutting down schools and restaurants. With no one to supply meat to, their venture — like so many others — was on the brink of bankruptcy. And when the situation was further aggravated by African swine fever (ASF), she and her husband shut down the meat shop and switched to real estate and engaging in build-and-sell. They bought properties in Malabon (where they hail from), Quezon City, and even farmlands in Zambales to develop them.

Connh said that real estate is less stressful compared to operating a meat shop, which was so time consuming that she was thinking about it 24/7. With the shift, she became master of her time. She even built a studio in her home and shoots her video content there Mondays to Fridays. Each weekday, she uploads one recipe and a video, a process that takes around four hours from start to finish.

But more than being a content creator, she is a doting mom to five kids, including two stepchildren (aged 27 and 26) and three children aged 18, six, and one. Connh happily shares that this year, their family is celebrating many milestones: a daughter recently celebrated her 18th birthday with a debut party, the one-year-old was christened, a son will turn seven, and a stepdaughter is getting married in October! “Ang daming gastos,” she quips. 

Though Connh’s husband and kids are very happy for her social media success, they are all camera shy and would rather be off-camera. But they do look forward to eating out together and especially enjoy hotel buffets since they all love to eat and cook. In fact, Connh has enrolled her two daughters in culinary school.

When she is done with family obligations, Connh goes to the spa for a bit of self-pampering and relaxation, away from the public eye. After all, she is quite recognizable.

Her followers range from Gen Z-ers to mothers. She noticed that when she uploads videos on restocking, the ones who react are mostly Gen Z-ers. But when it’s a cooking video, the ones who comment are moms. 

Connh first realized she had a knack for cooking way back in 2015, when she was a member and administrator of the Facebook group “iFoodala Foodies,” which had over 100,000 members. Then as now, she had no reservations about sharing her recipes with their exact measurements with others. And she will not lend her name to a recipe unless she’s proven that it’s delicious.

And now, with her enviable social media following, Connh continues to not only share her recipes, but encourages others to build a “negosyo” from them. This was the case with the pares of Diwata, which she shared specifically for those interested to open a pares restaurant or stall.

For this magnanimous modern Nanay, the recipe for success is not only about sharing her love of cooking, but using that delicious knowledge to help improve the lives of others as well.

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