Double Ticket Give Away for The Cape Town Festival of Beer

It seems that Beer has been on everyone’s lips for the past few months.  In September we had National Braai Day, and where there is braai there is beer.  In that same month Yuppiechef announced that they were in bed with The League of Beers and sang the praises for craft beer, all of which – even as a n0n-drinker – I wholly agree with (read their article here).

Then there was October, and with that came the Oktober Bierfest.  Which, if this was an investigative journalism piece, I would tell you why the Cape Town Bierfest was held in early November.

 

I passed the location of the Cape Town Bierfest event a number of times that weekend (Newlands Brewery is situated almost exactly half way between my house and my parent’s house)...

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Let It Be (My Food Philosophy)

A recent encounter with a business venture has left me thinking a lot more than usual about why I choose to work with food.  I use the word ‘encounter’ because it was brief – in just 3 weeks I learned about the type of chef I am not.

It turns out that I am a food snob.  Even if I make a simple homely lasagne, I want it to be the best d*** lasagne possible.  I want to use the best quality mince, the juiciest tomatoes and preferably make the lasagne sheets from scratch.  I want to cook the meat sauce for hours to develop the flavour.  I want to create a luscious bechamel sauce and top it with real parmigiano-reggiano.

I work with food because I love to work with great food.  In my corporate and private catering, I strive to use the freshest and highest quality ingredients available...

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A Hard Day’s Night

Bedtime on Friday… And the end of week 3 at the corporate kitchen.

Waking up at 4:40am, prepping and delivering my corporate breakfasts, rushing to get lunch on the go at the kitchen, fetching my son from school, shopping in the evening and processing a lot of admin late into the night has been both exhilarating and exhausting. Just last night, I had my son in tow, supermarket shopping and then doing a bakery collection at 8:30pm. “Dinner” at our house was a bowl of DasMuesli and vanilla yoghurt – thankfully the owner of DasMuesli dropped off a sample packet of his delicious luxury muesli yesterday, which served as our emergency meal last night. I’ve ordered DasMuesli for my corporate breakfast clients – once you’ve tried this muesli, you’re not likely to ever buy anything else.

Today we l...

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Freshly Blogged – just one more sleep!

I postponed the day I moved house to complete the first challenge of Freshly Blogged in some kind of orderliness.

At the time, I was convinced that I’d have the distraction of Freshly Blogged for that first challenge and, if the odds were forever in my favour, perhaps one or two challenges more. For months before Freshly Blogged started, I’d been preoccupied with finding a more suitable rental property. Now with that for the most part sorted out, it was time to move on to the next project. Corporate breakfast deliveries aside, there wasn’t much catering on a regular basis going on – Cape Town had already moved into it’s winter hibernation.

And so it began, out of nowhere Freshly Blogged struck my life like a bolt of lightening...

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A Day in The Life

The Food Crew grew up this week. We’re now in an office block in Salt River, with a kitchen overlooking Cape Town’s harbour and city. I haven’t had a chance to look out the window long enough to check if you can see the mountain. When I have a moment to breath, I’ll let you know.

I was taken on to the balcony yesterday and shown the ‘mind garden’ – a collection of potted plants and herbs, which is a staff initiative. I was thrilled to be asked to use the herbs in my cooking – and today my potato wedges were scented with freshly picked rosemary from a 4th floor balcony in the city.

My camera hasn’t come out of my bag since we’ve been in our new premises. I use the term ‘we’ lightly – the lady who I was hoping would be my assistant decided today that working in a kitchen was not for her...

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Win a Personal Chef Experience

My current entry in Pick n Pay’s Freshly Blogged Competition has got me feeling all loved up – I want to share that love.

I’m lucky enough to have a family home in one of the most beautiful parts of Cape Town and I would like to invite you to have me cook for you there.  The place is Misty Cliffs, it is situated between Kommetjie and Scarborough, bordering on nature conservation estate.  Have a look at my current recipe on Freshly Blogged and let me know what you think by commenting on the recipe – http://freshlyblogged.co.za/recipe/valentines-dinner/ – a wonderful relaxing lunch experience could be yours to celebrate Valentine’s Day next year.

A beautiful view for your personal chef experience!

If you would like to win a Valentine’s Day celebration lunch for 2 people at a private home in Misty Cliffs all you have to do is leave...

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Spicy Lentil and Beetroot Soup with Oriental Dried Fruit and Onion Chutney

I’m not really sure what I snacked on before the lovely Nina Timm sent an interesting looking package to me last week.  The box contained Moir’s Cream Crackers, Fairview Erik’s Goat’s Cheese Gouda and a jar of Oriental Dried Fruit and Onion Chutney.  Slowly but surely that package has been sustaining me over the past few days while I’ve been plodding through admin duties.

A delicious oriental dried fruit and onion chutney and very tasty goat's gouda cheese!

A delicious oriental dried fruit and onion chutney and very tasty goat’s gouda cheese!

Determined not to finish every bite of deliciousness before using at least one product in a culinary way, I simply topped a bowl of Spicy Lentil and Beetroot Soup with plain yoghurt and Nina Timm’s Oriental Dried Fruit and Onion Chutney.  I’ve never used chutney as a soup garnish before, but it worked!

The Spicy Lentil and Bee...

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September’s “I Made It” Challenge

And in other news… I am honoured to be chosen by Tandy Sinclair of Lavender and Lime to host this month’s
“I Made It” Challenge.

The Challenge that I’m both excited and apprehensive to present is the intimidating (to me at least) and classic dish, Cassoulet.

Many moons ago, I invited my cousin for dinner. I asked him what he’d like me to make. He told me that he absolutely loved Cassoulet. I pretended to know what he was talking about, as us seasoned cooks are supposed to have a encyclopedic knowledge of all things culinary. It sounded French, so I turned to the guru of French cooking, Julia Child.

Upon finding the recipe in Mastering the Art, I found out that Julia Child’s recipe for Cassoulet is 3 pages long, and you could feed hungry people for week’s on the cost… Needless to say, I th...

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Freshly Blogged – The Final Countdown!

This week we submitted our challenge 9 dishes for Freshly Blogged, leaving just two more challenges ahead of us.


With the end in sight, win or loose we must part with Freshly Blogged. It’s been the most incredible journey of growth I could ever have dreamed about. I’ve worked alongside some fabulously creative food bloggers, entering a unique inner circle and learning so much. I’ve pushed the boundaries of my own cooking, challenging myself to cook-out-the-box and surprising myself with new flavours, techniques and the sense of pride you achieve when you do something well.


My goal was to write about Freshly Blogged weekly, expanding on my inspiration, detailing techniques from my recipes. In reality, I didn’t expect to get further than the first 2 challenges...

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Meaty Moments – Freshly Blogged Challenge 2!

Happily no-one in the challenge has been chopped yet – but I still feel incredibly lucky to be in the competition 🙂

At first, this week’s challenge looked starkingly simple.  Who wouldn’t make a stew and dumplings when given beef shin, a Knorr Stock Pot and beef suet to work with?  The room for playing came in the form of a PnP soup mix.  As easy as it would be to throw all the ingredients of the pack into the stew and come out with something delicious, I wanted to have something more on the plate than a hearty stew.  It had never occured to me to buy the soup mix and use it for anything else than my nourishing whole free-range chicken soup...

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