Heston Blumenthal

Some sound advice from my friend Heston:)

“Mushrooms should never be washed / Salting meat before cooking prevents browning / The tenderness of meat is affected by the way in which it is carved / Cooking green vegetables with a lid on will dull their colour / Salt must be added to pulses at the end of cooking / An egg yolk can only emulsify one cup of oil / As meat cooks the juices move towards the centre / Storing tomatoes in the refrigerator ruins their flavour / Fish is ready when specks of white albumen appear on its surface / Flour must always be sieved”

 

Dates

I’m going to use dates this year, they are so delicious and so seldom used. I made this salad for the Sanlam Food Wine and Design and it was a hit! I get dried dates from my local fruit and veg shop, loose and by the kg, but I did use the supermarket block of dates while on holiday in December and they were fine too.

Date and red onion salad:

Roughly slice about two handfuls of dates, mix them up with one thinly sliced red onion, add about 150ml white wine vinegar and leave to marinate for about an hour. Roughly chop about 150g whole almonds, mix them up with some dried chilli flakes, sumac (if you have), salt and extra virgin olive oil. Toss this and the date mix with some peppery leaves (baby spinach/watercress/rocket) and squeeze a bit of fresh lemon juice. You can add some home made croutons to add some crunch. Dish delish:))

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Date Balls

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INGREDIENTS

200g dates – fresh sticky dates
50 grams flaked almonds 
50 grams pecan nuts
a handful of raisins
1/2 a cup of fine shredded coconut
Extra fine coconut for rolling in

Pulsate the nuts in a blender until they are varying in size between crumbs and largeish chunks. Take out the blender and set aside. Take the dates and cut in half, take out the pips and place in a blender and pulsate. Add raisins and pulsate a little more. Now add the raisins and dates to the nuts and mix with your hands. Add enough coconut to stop the mixture from being to sticky. At this point you could add some whole raisins/nuts/cherries/small copped up pieces of dried fruit or dried berries or dark chocolate and then squish/roll into small balls or logs. Place the extra coconut on a large plate and roll the balls/logs in it coating well.

Serve or package in an airtight container and refrigerate until needed.

Chocolate Brownies

Preheat oven to 180. Grease and line a 23 cm square tin. Melt 250g butter with 325g sugar, remove from heat. Sift 90g cocoa, 4 Tbsp flour, pinch salt and half tsp baking powder. Stir in melted butter and sugar, add 4 eggs and mix. Add 125g chopped nuts (I use pecan), I sometimes replace nuts with frozen cranberries (as in picture below), and 200g chopped dark chocolate, mix to combine. Pour into prepared tin and bake for about 25 minutes.

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Beautiful House & Leisure Event

House & Leisure/Handsome Things

handsome things

House and LeisureHouse and Leisure Emma-Jane Harbour from http://www.emmajanenation.com/

House and LeisureSlide4Slide8 Amanda Sevasti http://amandasevasti.com/

House and LeisureHouse and Leisure Jono Hall http://allyoucaneatforfree.wordpress.com/

House and LeisureHouse and Leisure

Last night saw the launch of House and Leisure‘s annual Food Issue and Trends dinner that took place at The Beach in Braamfontein. It was a beautiful evening with gorgeous food by Lara from the Food Goddess.  Thanks for spoiling us House and Leisure.

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We go together

In November last year, House and leisure approached us to work with them on an event for a Mr Price launch. The theme, ‘We go together’, we came up with the following menu and a few pictures we managed to take during the event.

Canapes:
“Cheese and Tomato”
Bocconcinni mozzarella, cherry tomatoes and micro basil on skewers.
“Egg and Bacon”
Rye rounds topped with quail egg and dusted with bacon crumbs.
“Roast beef and Yorkshire pudding’
Rare roast beef served in Yorkshire pudding with horse raddish cream.
“Smoked salmon and cream cheese”
Smoked salmon roses with cream cheese and soy flavoured pearls.
“Cheese and fruit”
Blue cheese tart topped with caramelised fruit.
Mains: Floating dinner:
“Fish n chips”
Fish goujohns with string fries and home made tartar sauce, served in paper cones.
“Bangers and Mash”
Mini home made sausages with creamed potato.
“Bunny and Chow”
Chicken tikka massala served in mini brioche bread bun.
“Mac and Cheese”
Mini pasta shapes served in cream sauce, topped with parmesan.
Dessert:
“Strawberries and cream”
Mini consol jars with fresh strawberries and thick cream.
“Bread and butter”
Bread and butter pudding (made with croissants and white chocolate).
“Chocolate and orange”
Mini short crust pastry chocolate and orange tarts.
ch&t
r&y
s&cc
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straw
choc

Melting Moments

melting moments

Heat oven to 140.

Cream 360g butter with 120g icing sugar. Add 120g custard powder and 360g plain flour, mix till combined. Roll into small balls and flatten on baking sheet with a fork. Bake for about 8 minutes, remove and cool on wire rack. Sandwich together with a mix of lemon juice and icing sugar. Sublime!