far breton – baked custard with rum and prunes

far breton – baked custard with rum and prunes

Far Breton

Baked egg custard has been baked for centuries across the world. The Portuguese make their irresistible pasteis de nata while the French seem to have endless window fronts packed with egg custard pâtisserie.

Today I want you to introduce you to Far Breton, perhaps the most delicious baked custard I have had in a very long time. It hails from Brittany in France and was originally eaten by farm workers for lunch. What gives this treat such a unique taste is the combination of the rum and plums in the tart. I got the recipe from The Art of French Baking and the technique used, is most interesting. You first mix the flour and egg together and then add the sugar, milk and rum. Try it … its easy and scrumptious.

Far Breton
(Recipe from The Art of French Baking)
250 g pitted prunes, soaked overnight in water
butter to grease the tart pan
125 g plain flour
large pinch of salt
4 eggs, large
100 g caster sugar
1 litre milk
200 ml rum

Preheat the oven to 180 °C. Grease an ovenproof dish with butter. In a large bowl, mix the flour and salt. Add the eggs one by one, mixing thoroughly to create a smooth batter. Whisk the batter to introduce air into it. Add the sugar, then the milk. Stir in the rum. Drain the prunes, add them to the mixture and pour into the dish. Bake for 40 minutes or until brown. Serve either hot or cold.

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pandoro #christmas tree #trifle

pandoro #christmas tree #trifle

This year my Pandoro Christmas Tree Trifle will stand proud just like the Statue of Liberty right in the centre of my festive table – between the gammon, chicken and potato salad.

Pandoro Christmas Tree Trifle

I recently visited Miki Ciman at her La Botegga Deli at the Italian Club in Cape Town and she shared this very traditional Italian Christmas treat with me. Now, Pandoro is baked in a special star-shaped mould. When sprinkled with confectioners’ sugar, it has the appearance of fallen snow on a mountain.

The two of us took the Pandoro out of its box before decorating it with Miki’s crème pâtissière, a glass of sherry and fresh berries. The transformation was this most magnificent Christmas tree trifle!

Bellisimo, lovely and easy to make.

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Visit Miki at the Italian Club
If you have not yet paid a visit to her deli at the Italian Club – put it on your to do list asap.   Miki is “old school” and she still makes all her pasta, cookies and other specialities by hand. She sits diligently each day preparing fresh gnocchi by hand in her deli. She also sells the best Italian fare from handmade mozzarella to charcuterie and a range of other products from her homeland.

Want to learn how to make cheese, pasta, gnocchi or salami?
Contact Miki at : 021 511 5956 (ask for La Botegga Deli) or 083 391 5792

Lovely Miki!

Lovely Miki!

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Pandoro Christmas Tree Trifle

1 large Pandoro
175 ml sweet sherry (or liqueur of your choice )
500 ml lemon crème pâtissière
fresh berries
icing sugar, for serving

Carefully cut Pandoro horizontally into 6 slices. Place the largest slice on a serving platter. Sprinkle over the sherry and spread a thick layer of crème pâtissière over. Top with the next largest slice, angling it so that the points of the star do not align. Repeat with sherry and crème pâtissière with the remaining layers. You can now place in your refrigerator until later. Just before serving put a lot of berries on top of the trifle, push some berries in on the sides of the cake. Sift icing sugar over the top and enjoy!

Miki’s lemon crème pâtissière
Makes 500 ml

40 g plain flour
100 g caster sugar
large pinch of salt
300 ml milk
4 egg yolks
zest of one lemon, thinly slice strips (not the white bits)
20 g butter

Sift the flour, sugar and salt and set aside. Beat 60 ml of milk and egg yolks. Scoop the flour mixture in and beat until smooth. Heat the remaining milk and lemon over low heat until it just starts to boil. Remove lemon peel and discard. Pour a third of the hot milk into the egg mixture and mix well. Throw everything in the heated milk and stir well. Stir constantly until the mixture thickens. Cook for one minute. Stir in the butter and mix well. Remove and let cool completely before using.

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white chocolate chip gingerbread cookies

white chocolate chip gingerbread cookies

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Christmas just is’nt Christmas without gingerbread cookies! This no-fuss recipe is all thanks to that wonderful Australian foodie, Donna Hay. All that you need to do with this dough is roll it into little balls, pop them onto a baking tray, flatten them slightly with your fingers and zip them into the oven! Simple and easy.

I added some delicious white chocolate chips and this make these treats so irresistible that you will find it difficult not to eat them all up yourself. The reason for this is that the white chocolate turns into a kind of silky caramel. But be warned, the cookies are rather hard when you bite into them…so have it with a glass of milk or a refreshing cuppa tea.

Donna’s styling was so gorgeous … so I did about the same. I love it!

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white chocolate chip gingerbread cookies
 
Author:
Serves: 30
Ingredients
  • Makes 24
  • 125g unsalted butter, soften
  • 90g brown sugar
  • 230g golden syrup
  • 375g plain flour
  • 5 ml bicarbonate of soda
  • 10 ml ground ginger
  • 100g white chocolate, chopped
Instructions
  1. Preheat your oven to 170°C. Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat for 6–8 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl, until the ingredients are pale and creamy. Add the golden syrup, flour, bicarbonate of soda and ginger and beat until the mixture comes together to form a smooth dough. Fold the chocolate through the mixture. Roll tablespoons of the mixture into balls and place on large, lightly-greased baking tray lined with non-stick baking paper. Flatten slightly and bake for 12-15 minutes or until golden. Allow to cool slightly before transferring to wire racks to cool completely.

 

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#gifting: asparagus + herb bouquet

#gifting: asparagus + herb bouquet

I had to get a gift for my foodie friend, the lovely Errieda Du Toit. But what do you buy for this extraordinary friend and food soul sister of mine? … So I decided to make a fresh asparagus and herb bouquet that she can re-use. I took the fresh asparagus spears, arranged them in a beautiful glass bowl and then took some fresh rosemary, sage and mint out of my garden. I love it. It is gorgeous, fresh and different … ideal birthday or Christmas gift.
Happy Birthday Errieda! SONY DSC

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Christmas cake on the #braai – the #ExpressoShow way

Christmas cake on the #braai – the #ExpressoShow way
How insane and fabulous is this? A delicious Christmas cake on the #braai. PS: All images taken with my mobile phone

How insane and fabulous is this? A delicious Christmas cake on the #braai. PS: All images taken with my mobile phone

I love cooking on Expresso Morning Show (live TV is my thing) and I LOVE the whole team from Paul (the talented producer & director) to Zola (innovative chef and stylist), Stephanie (the super stylist) and then the lovely down to earth but so energetic presenters Elana, Ewan, Graeme, Katlego, Leigh-Anne and Zoë. Not forgetting Ruan that gives me my coffee fix every morning, the dedicated cameramen, Lucian the vivacious floor manager / director and those brilliant make-up artists! They are like family to me, they make me really happy and I hope that I bring a ray of sunshine into their lives.

The recipe calls for beautiful seasonal fruit

The recipe calls for beautiful seasonal fruit

Anyway, the other day Zola gave me her recipe to make. She said: “Anél, I want you to bake a cake… on the fire.” My first reaction was that of odd disbelief (really?)… I nearly choked on my morning coffee but then I kinda fell in love with the idea. And now … I think it is genius! Zola’s recipe is perfect for a Christmas cake on the fire. It is made with seasonal cherries and apricots and with a dash of cream and it is a real festive treat.

Zola Nene the goddess of the Expresso kitchen. This #braai cake is her invention.

Zola Nene the goddess of the Expresso kitchen. This #braai cake is her invention.

Cooking with one of the hottest guys in South Africa is one of the perks ... just saying. But ladies he is a very nice guy too!

Cooking with one of the hottest guys in South Africa is one of the perks … just saying. But ladies he is a very nice guy too!

The way the two of us can carry on! Love you Elana, mother of Esther Beth.

The way the two of us can carry on! Love you Elana, mother of Esther Beth.

Beautiful inside and out here she is ... the HOT Leigh-Anne Williams. Today as gorgeous as a fresh apricot.

Beautiful inside and out here she is … the HOT Leigh-Anne Williams. Today as gorgeous as a fresh apricot.

Kat I had to steal this pic from your facebook. Why dont I have a pic with you? I don't know, but this man is one of the most talented MC's, TV presenters, singers and what he touch turns into gold. Watch the space. Here he is getting up to no good with Elana.

Kat I had to steal this pic from your facebook. Why dont I have a pic with you? I don’t know, but this man is one of the most talented MC’s, TV presenters, singers and what he touch turns into gold. Watch the space. Here he is getting up to no good with Elana.

Graeme is another hottie on the show. He has an infectious laugh and we have loads of fun when we braai together!

Graeme is another hottie on the show. He has an infectious laugh and we have loads of fun when we braai together!

Zoe is the latest addition to Expresso. What a beautiful, warm and lovely woman. You rock!

Zoe is the latest addition to Expresso. What a beautiful, warm and lovely woman. You rock!

Me braaiing outside the Expresso studio .... and having lots of fun

Me braaiing outside the Expresso studio …. and having lots of fun

We can do absolutely nothing without Lucian. He organises the cameras, the lights, counts us down. All in all one of the nicest and friendliest guys I know.

We can do absolutely nothing without Lucian. He organises the cameras, the lights, counts us down. All in all one of the nicest and friendliest guys I know.

Ruan is the first person you see in the "green room". He manages the people before they go on set. The sweetest guy, more of a model I say (you will recognise his face on some TV ads) - and he makes a mean coffee!

Ruan is the first person you see in the “green room”. He manages the people before they go on set. The sweetest guy, more of a model I say (you will recognise his face on some TV ads) – and he makes a mean coffee!

TIPS FOR BRAAIING CAKE ON THE FIRE: Do remember that your braai coals must be of medium heat – otherwise this cake is going to end up something of a charred creation. All you need do is make a gap for your pot to nestle the pot in-between the coals. Do not put the pot directly on the coals. Then once on the fire place around 5 to 6 coals on top of the pot lid.

Christmas cake on the #braai - the #ExpressoShow way
 
Author:
Ingredients
  • 60 ml Demerara sugar
  • 60 ml maple syrup
  • 60 ml butter
  • 8 ripe apricots, halved and pitted
  • 200 g pitted fresh cherries
  • For the sponge
  • 120 g butter, softened
  • 120 g Demerara sugar
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 2 eggs
  • 175 ml plain yoghurt
  • 160 g cake flour
  • 5 ml baking powder
  • 5 ml bicarbonate of soda
Instructions
  1. Heat braai coals to medium heat. Grease a medium-sized cast iron pot very well with Spray and Cook. Grease the 60 ml butter onto the bottom of the pot then sprinkle 60 ml Demerara sugar over this and drizzle with 60 ml maple syrup. Arrange the apricots (cut-side down) on top of the syrup then place the cherries in the gaps in and around the apricots. Make the sponge by creaming together the butter, sugar and lemon zest. Whisk the egg together with yoghurt. Sift together flour, baking powder and bicarbonate soda. Fold dry and wet ingredients alternately into the creamed butter and sugar. Spoon the batter carefully onto the fruit then cover the pot with the lid. Make a gap amidst the coals and nestle the pot into the gap. Place some coals on top of the lid then leave to cook for 45 minutes. To check to see whether your cake is cooked insert a skewer – if it comes out dry, your cake is baked. Remove from the coals and allow it to cool for 10 mins in the pot before turning it out upside down. Serve with a dollop of plain cream mixed with vanilla.

 

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#crunchies with walnuts

#crunchies with walnuts

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Crunchies are one of South Africa’s favourite biscuit treats. Let’s be honest there is nothing quite like a crunchie with your cup of tea or coffee! You can also crumble these biscuits over ice cream for dessert or dip it in a sherry if you want to be a bit naughty. This time I added some walnuts to this biscuit mix and I am sure it will be a real winner this festive season.

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Crunchies with walnuts
1 L ( 4 cups ) oats
750 ml coconut
375 ml sugar
250 ml walnuts, chopped
250 ml flour
2.5 ml salt
5 ml cinnamon
250 ml butter
37.5 ml honey
10 ml baking soda, dissolved in 62 ml milk

Preheat your oven to 180 °C. Mix the oats, coconut, sugar and walnuts together. Sift the flour, salt and cinnamon together. Stir the oats mixture into the flour mixture. Melt the butter, add the honey and leave it to cool slightly. Dissolve the baking soda in the milk and mix with the butter mixture. Add to the dry ingredients and mix well. Press the mixture onto a greased baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes. Take out of the oven and cut immediately into blocks. Leave biscuit squares in baking tray until the have cooled completely.

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The Top 10 restaurants in South African announced

The Top 10 restaurants in South African announced

The Top 10 restaurants in South Africa were announced yesterday at the 2015 Eat Out Mercedes-Benz Restaurant Awards.

The Test Kitchen did it again, taking top honours among South African Restaurants as the Restaurant of the Year for the fourth consecutive time. Scot Kirton of La Colombe won the coveted title of Eat Out S.Pellegrino Chef of the Year.

Restaurant of the Year_Luke Dale-Roberts of The Test Kitchen with Claudia Walters of Mercedes-Benz and Abigail Donnelly of Eat Out.

Restaurant of the Year_Luke Dale-Roberts of The Test Kitchen with Claudia Walters of Mercedes-Benz and Abigail Donnelly of Eat Out.

Franschhoek-based restaurant The Tasting Room at Le Quartier Français was recognised for maintaining the highest level of service with the Service Excellence Award for the second year running and also took third place in the Top 10.

Restaurant nr 3 and Service Excellence Award winner,  The Tasting Room. L-R: Morne Wessels, Eleanor Kerwan, Margot Janse, Gerald van der Walt_Harry Rawana, Gregory Caci

Restaurant nr 3 and Service Excellence Award winner, The Tasting Room. L-R: Morne Wessels, Eleanor Kerwan, Margot Janse, Gerald van der Walt_Harry Rawana, Gregory Caci

The Nederburg Rising Star Award went to Carmen Muller of The Tasting Centre at Rupert & Rothschild in Franschhoek for her promising talent, and the Wine Service Award for a top sommelier was won by Lloyd Jusa of Five Hundred at The Saxon in Johannesburg. Greenhouse at The Cellars-Hohenort received the Boschendal Style Award.

Boschendal Style Award Winner, Peter Tempelhof of Greenhouse

Boschendal Style Award Winner, Peter Tempelhof of Greenhouse

Says Eat Out Editor and Chief Judge Abigail Donnelly: “It’s been a phenomenal judging season with seemingly endless opportunities to enjoy fantastic food. South African dining really is of a world-class quality – I am honoured and humbled to have experienced such excellence this year.”

The 2015 winners are:

1. The Test Kitchen
2. La Colombe
3. The Tasting Room at Le Quartier Français
4. Greenhouse at The Cellars-Hohenort
5. Five Hundred at The Saxon
6. The Restaurant at Waterkloof
7. Restaurant Mosaic at The Orient
8. Terroir
9. The Pot Luck Club
10. Jordan Restaurant

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three-cheese-pull-apart-and-share-bread

three-cheese-pull-apart-and-share-bread

I made this “pull apart bread” (a recipe adapted from Zola Nene) and just loved it. It is perfect for a picnic and to share with friends … whenever and where ever!

Three-cheese-pull-apart-bread

Three-cheese-pull-apart-bread


Three-cheese-pull-apart-and-share-bread

(Adapted recipe from Zola Nene)
250 ml grated cheddar cheese
125 ml grated mozzarella cheese
125 ml grated Parmesan cheese
180 ml mayonnaise
large handful mixed fresh herbs , chopped
500g ready-made bread dough
flour for rolling the dough
30ml olive oil
5 ml Maldon or course salt

Preheat the oven to 180 ° C. Grease a 23cm x 23cm pan (you can also use a regular cake pan). Mix the cheese, mayonnaise and fresh herbs together. Divide the dough into twelve balls and the cheese mixture into twelve parts. Sprinkle flour on the table and press each ball with the palm of your hand into a flat circle +- 1cm thick. Create a hollow in the centre of your flattened dough for the cheese mixture. Fold dough in half and roughly pinch the edges. Form a ball of each, pinching under the dough spheres. Pack in tin. Brush the top of the bread with the olive oil, cover with cling film then leave to rise in a warm place until doubled in size. Remove the cling film, sprinkle with salt then bake for 30 – 45 minutes until the bread is cooked through. Once baked, remove from the tin and pull bread pieces apart to serve.

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the best #artichokes with a parmesan filling

the best #artichokes with a parmesan filling

Last Saturday, when four lovely artichokes found their way into my market basket, I had to call my Italian mamma , Miki Ciman for her wise advice and to get some tips on how the Italians prepare this vegetable delicacy. In her strong and unmistakable Italian accent she told me…” “Do not complicate ‘tha’ cooking of ‘tha’ artichoke, my darling. ‘Cooks’ it slowly and with ‘tha lôve’. ‘Maka ‘tha’ stuffing with ‘tha’ parmigiano, ‘tha’ parsley and ‘tha’ breadcrumbs. Pull ‘tha’ leaves carefully apart and stuff the breadcrumbs in between. Simmer in salty water and ‘tha’ olive oil. Serve with ‘tha’ lemons and your best olive oil. ‘Delizioso’!”

So here it is… stuffed artichokes … the real deal.

The best artichokes with a parmesan filling
4 artichokes
150 g parmesan cheese
100 g white breadcrumbs ( + – four slices of white bread )
a large handful of parsley, finely chopped
30 ml olive oil
pinch of black pepper
750 ml water
5 ml salt
45 ml olive oil
for serving
fresh parsley , finely chopped
To serve
Maldon salt
fresh lemons
olive oil

Cut the stem of the artichokes down to 2 cm in length. Place the artichokes in cold water for an hour. Cut the hardest leaves off at the bottom. Mix the parmesan cheese, bread crumbs, parsley, black pepper and olive oil. Divide the filling into four portions. Take each artichoke and pull the leaves gently apart. Press the filling everywhere between the leaves and in the middle of the artichokes. Place the stuffed artichokes in a pot with water, salt and olive oil . Put lid on and simmer slowly for 75 minutes. Fill the pot with more water if necessary. Serve with parsley, olive oil, fresh lemon juice and Maldon salt.

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#boerewors #braai #pie – super #lekker

#boerewors #braai #pie – super #lekker

*I took all the images with my mobile phone*

*I took all the images with my mobile phone*


I made this delicious boerewors braai pie on Expresso this morning. The recipe is the brainchild of Stephanie Louw (food stylist on Expresso). Suzelle inspired her but she made it her own by adding the holy trilogy braaibroodjie flavours: tomato (pesto), onions and cheese. Then she added another SA favourite – braaied boerewors! Its super-super lekker and so easy to make.

Graeme Richards getting ready to make the boerewors braai pie with me

Graeme Richards getting ready to make the boerewors braai pie with me

Boerewors braaibroodjie pie
(Recipe by Stephanie Louw)

500g boerewors, braaied, keep in its coil
1 pk puff pastry, defrosted
125 ml tomato pesto
½ onion sliced, sautéed with 1 chopped garlic clove
10 ml smoked paprika
Salt and pepper
125 ml grated cheddar
125 ml feta, crumbed
Olive oil for brushing

Braai the boerewors and set aside to cool. Prepare some coals – not too hot – the same that you will use for making braaibroodjies. Roll puff pastry out. Spread pesto on one half, then top with onion and garlic mixture. Place boerewors on top, season with salt, pepper and smoked paprika. Top with cheeses. Fold one half over the filling and pinch to close. Place on a braai grid and close gently. Do not latch it. Cook over the coals for 15 minutes, turning regularly. Cut into wedges and serve

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candy-striped #beetroot + apple #salad

candy-striped #beetroot + apple #salad

candy stirpe beetroot salad

I looovvvveee crunchy food and this salad is perfect for a hot summers day. It not only tastes fabulous but it looks spectacular too. Delicious and easy to make.

Candy-striped beetroot and apple salad with walnuts and basil
candy-striped beets (you don’t have to peel it)
apples, peeled and cored 

walnuts, chopped 

basil leaves

mandolin slicer
Dressing 

15 ml Dijon mustard

45 ml white sherry vinegar 

62.5 ml good olive oil 

2.5 ml salt 

large pinch black pepper 



Slice the beets and apples thinly with a mandolin slicer. Stack or arrange the beets and apples on a plate. Sprinkle chopped walnuts and torn basil on top. Mix the dressing ingredients well and sprinkle over the salad.

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whole #chicken pie – 16th century tudor style pie

whole #chicken pie – 16th century tudor style pie

This is a chicken pie with a difference. Something quite unusual. I took all the ingredients of a chicken pie and placed these under the skin of the chicken. I then baked the chicken whole – under a blanket of puff pastry. It is easy, yet delicious and very 16 Century – A real Tudor style pie.

Whole Chicken Pie

Whole Chicken Pie

Whole chicken pie
1 whole chicken, 1.3 kg
250 g mushrooms, finely chopped
30 g butter
125 g bacon, chopped
1.25 ml ground cloves
10 ml fresh thyme
salt and pepper
15 ml olive oil
a pack puff pastry, thawed
1 egg, beaten
String
Aluminium foil

Preheat the oven to 190 ° C. Fry the mushrooms on high heat in butter until brown. Remove from the heat and add the chopped raw bacon, cloves and thyme. Season with salt and pepper. Loosen the chicken skin with your fingers – also the skin of the thighs and wings. Insert the mushroom and bacon mixture everywhere under the skin of the chicken. Rub olive oil all over the chicken. Season the outside with salt and pepper. Cover the wings with foil. String the wings and thighs together. Bake in oven for 35 minutes. Remove the foil and string and let the chicken cool for 15 minutes. Place the puff pastry over the chicken. Press and softly close the pastry on the sides. Brush with egg yolk and bake for another 40 minutes until golden brown. Rest for 10 minutes and then let the Tudor festivities begin.

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#pork sausage #bitterballen – easy rugby world cup snack

#pork sausage #bitterballen – easy rugby world cup snack

I love these easy pork sausage bitterballen. They are crispy, delicious with Dijon mustard, and just even grander with a refreshingly cold beer.

Pork sausage bitterballen

#pork sausage #bitterballen - easy rugby world cup snack
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Snack
Cuisine: Dutch
Serves: 30
Ingredients
  • 400 g pork sausages, meat pushed out of casings
  • 30 ml olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, grated
  • leaves of a fresh sprig of thyme
  • 75 g butter
  • 85 g flour
  • 225 ml full cream milk, hot
  • a pinch of nutmeg
  • juice of half a small lemon
  • 1.25 ml salt
  • 1.25 ml black pepper
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 125 g breadcrumbs
  • oil for deep frying
  • Dijon mustard
Instructions
  1. Fry the meat in oil for 7 minutes, or until brown. Use the back of a fork to loosen the meat in the pan. Add the garlic and thyme and cook for another minute or two. Remove from heat and cool. Place the butter in a saucepan and melt over low heat. Remove from heat and add the flour. Stir until the ingredients have become a smooth paste. Place the butter and flour mixture back on the stove and slowly add the hot milk. Constantly stir to prevent lumps. Keep stirring until thickened. Stir in the nutmeg and lemon juice. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Add the meat, mix well and leave to cool completely. Divide the mixture into golf ball sized balls. Dip the balls first in the egg and then in the crumbs until all the balls are well coated with crumbs. Deep fry in oil at 170 °C until golden brown. Drain on paper towels. Serve immediately with Dijon mustard… and of course a cold beer!

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Homemade Spur #chicken wings with that famous #durky sauce

Homemade Spur #chicken wings with that famous #durky sauce

Chicken wings with durky sauceI love Spur’s chicken wings, but the person who loves them more than me, is my 84-year old mom. When I take Babs out for lunch, there is just one place she wants to go: “Spur, my child for those irresistible chicken wings.” It is an easy choice and one that I do not mind because the triple combination of the crisp, fatty chicken skinned wings dunked in that delicate Durky sauce with its blue cheese creaminess makes me weak too.

Homemade durky sauce

So the other day we decided to make our own. Our first stop however was the Spur around the corner – armed with pen and notebook and our detective taste buds. We had to decipher each of the ingredients before we made our own attempt at these moreish wings. After dipping and dabbing we came to the conclusion that making the wings and the blue-cheese dip was the easy part. Something more tricky was the Durky sauce. After many test tastings and conferencing between ourselves, we worked out that garlic flakes, onion, vinegar, sugar, red pepper, paprika and a dash of salt were the fundamental elements of this sauce.

blue cheese sauce chicken wings

With our clandestine operation complete, we headed home with list in hand to test out our version of these wings and Durky sauce. After multiple attempts, I think mom and I came up with a version that could stand its own – albeit a homemade version of those famous Spur wings.

Homemade buffalo chicken wings
Serves 3-4 as a starter
12 chicken wings, cut in half at the joints
fine table salt
oil for deep frying

Blue Cheese Sauce
125 ml mayonnaise
125 ml sour cream
100 g blue cheese (crumbled)

Durky sauce
140 ml vinegar (white)
350 ml water
1.25 ml chilli powder
2.5 ml tabasco sauce (optional)
10 ml garlic flakes
15 ml onion, diced into small blocks
15ml sugar
5 ml salt
3ml paprika
2.5 ml maizena

Wings: Season the wings with salt. Deep fry in oil until golden brown. Remove from oil and drain excess oil on some paper.
Durky sauce: Mix all the ingredients in a pot and bring to the boil. Simmer for 5 minutes. Allow to stand for about an hour so that the garlic flakes can flavour the sauce.
Blue cheese sauce: Mix all the ingredients together.

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#beer-battered #fish + onion rings

#beer-battered #fish + onion rings

Beer battered fish

There is little in our culinary world that comes close to a ‘just out of the pan’ fried fish. Whenever I get the aroma of freshly fried fish I am automatically transported back to one of my most unforgettable meals. I was twenty, standing alone on the quayside of the Bosphorus River in Istanbul. It was my first overseas trip, it was Christmas day, I had bronchitis and was feeling desperately alone and dreadfully homesick … until I came across a boat filled with Turkish fisherman, unloading their catch. At the back of their boat, they were braaiing fresh fish and selling this on a bread roll with onion rings and a beer. A few minutes later I was munching on this simple meal and all of a sudden, I was lonely no more. I shall never forget that day, nor the happiness I suddenly felt sitting on a bench, eating a simple take-away.
onion rings in beer batter
I recently made my own beer-battered fresh fish and onions. It is a simple recipe. Take one cup of self-raising flour, 1 cup of beer and a large pinch of salt and voila! There you have it.

Just so you know I did not place the onion rings in ice before tossing them in the batter – as the batter tends not to stick properly… the trick with the batter is to ensure that all your ingredients are dry before dipping it in the batter.

Fish and onion rings in beer batter
Serves 4
250 ml self-raising flour
250 ml beer
2.5 ml salt
4 hake pieces, patted dry with a paper towel
2 big onions, peeled and sliced into rings (not washed nor placed in ice)
Oil for deep-frying
Maldon salt
1 lemon
4 bread rolls

Mix the flour, beer and salt. Dip both the fish and the onion rings in the beer batter to ensure they are well coated in batter, fry until brown and crisp. Sprinkle with Maldon salt and add a squeeze of lemon juice. Serve on a freshly baked bread roll with an ice-cold beer. Enjoy!

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