The Breede River Valley region is known for its breathtaking scenery, hospitable people and of course wonderful wines. We were there in October for the Wine on the River festival (which I wrote about here) and decided to take a few days off to do a wine road trip.
This dish almost seems Arabic instead of European with the use of sultanas and pine nuts. This is not surprising as Sicily was under Arab rule from 827 to 1061 and Sicilian cuisine was strongly influenced by the Arabs.
Every year mid October we eagerly pack the Land Rover and set off for the Wine on the River festival in Robertson. Held on the banks of the Breederiver you can taste a variety of wines from the Robertson, Ashton, Bonnievale and McGregor areas. We’ve always loved this festival – this year it was a bit of a hit and miss.
Vietnamese caramelised pork belly is a dish traditionally served during Tết (Vietnamese New Year). Pork is marinated in a salty sweet sauce and cooked in coconut juice – Vietnamese comfort food at its best.
“Kook en Geniet” is the most successful South African cookbook ever published. First published in 1951 and over a million copies later, this is the cookbook to use if you are looking for authentic South African recipes. Adrienne received a copy as a gift a while ago and decided to make lamb sosaties.
We’ve had a beautiful springbok loin in the freezer for a while now, just begging to be cooked. I could not decide on just one sauce to make for it, so ended up making four. My choices were a blackberry, chocolate, gin and juniper and whiskey cream sauce.
Here in South Africa we tend to be creatures of habit when it comes to making curry. Chicken, lamb and beef are usually the meat of choice, whether we are making an Indian or a traditional South African curry.
As goat curry is a very popular dish in India, we decided to make a curry with some of the springbok that we have in our freezer. Now I know that springbok meat and goat meat are not the same thing, but finding goat meat in South Africa is a bit of a challenge. To take the fusion food thing a bit further we decided to make a potjie (a traditional South Africa dish cooked in a cast iron pot over an open fire).
Legend has it that in 1574 there was a glassmaker’s assistant in Milan whose nickname was Zaffereno (Saffron). He always mixed a bit of saffron into the colours for the stained glass to make it more vivid. The glassmaker used to joke that he’ll be putting it into risotto next. When the glassmaker’s daughter got married he did just that. The steaming pots of golden rice was a huge success with the guests and it became a classic Milanese dish.
Braciole (or involtini as it is known in Italy) are meat bundles with all kinds of delicious fillings.
Braciole is a beloved Sunday lunch in Italian American households. It is simmered for hours (often with meatballs and/or sausage) in a tomato sauce (called Sunday gravy).
All the recipes for fillings looked so delicious I could not pick just one. I decided to use 3 very different fillings – Braciole 3 Ways!
I have not made nearly enough curries or South East Asian food lately, so Beef Rendang was a good choice for this week’s date night.
Rendang originated in Indonesia and spread to Malaysia and Singapore when the Minangkabau settlers migrated to those countries. This is a slow cooked dry curry, rich with spices and full of flavour.