Recipe For Grapefruit Cordial

I love how one word can have so many meanings! Being cordial means amongst other things being pleasant. When I deal with suppliers I try to be as cordial as possible. What makes me wonder, is why some people ignore polite emails when they are actually complaints. I recently took on a new product range but my clients were unhappy with the products and asked me to not stock this range of body products any more. The Beautiful Earth products were to replace The Victorian Garden range I was no longer stocking. My customers were unhappy with the shampoo but as I would rather stock one range of body products I decided to not stock any of their products. When I sent them an amiable email telling them my customers were complaining about the products, they did not ask me what the complaint was. They merely replied saying they would take me off their data base. I found that so strange, but as I had only placed one order with them I left it at that. But when I told a supplier I have been dealing with since 2009 that my customers were complaining about the consistency of her product range I expected some sort of response. Better Earth has been a regular supplier of household products and I love using them as I love the ethos behind the company. But, my complaint has been met with silence. Kerry has not emailed me back or called me to find out more about the complaint. As I needed to supply my customers with products they are happy with I turned to Earth Sap who do both body and  household products. I can only hope my relationship with them will be more than cordial. Now, let us turn to the noun which means a sweet fruit-flavoured drink. This grapefruit cordial is not too sweet and is extremely refreshing.

Grapefruit Cordial Recipe For Grapefruit Cordial

Grapefruit Cordial

Grapefruit Cordial

Mix this not too sweet grapefruit cordial with soda water for an extremely refreshing drink.

Ingredients:

  • 125mls water
  • 100g sugar - I used fructose
  • zest of 1 grapefruit
  • 250mls grapefruit juice
  • 5mls citric acid

Method:

  • Place the water and sugar into a small sauce pan
  • Over a medium heat, stir the mixture until the sugar has dissolved
  • Bring to the boil and leave to bubble away for 5 minutes
  • Add the zest and the juice and bring back to the boil
  • Leave to simmer on a medium heat for 20 minutes
  • Remove from the heat and add the citric acid
  • Strain into a sterilized glass bottle
  • Leave to cool before storing in the fridge

Cooks Notes:

Use with soda water at a ratio of 5:1. Add a tot of Campari for a cocktail.

http://tandysinclair.com/grapefruit-cordial/
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Tomate Et Chocolat, Nevers

We spent two nights in Nevers before heading out to the countryside to spend two days driving around the Burgundy region. We chose to spend our last night back in Nevers as we wanted to catch an earlier train to Paris than we had originally planned. We chose a different hotel and close to where we were staying was the very quaint looking Tomate Et Chocolat. The owner started off being quite abrupt but once we told him we were from South Africa he became quite pleasant. We chose the Domaine Dupré Bougogne 2008 wine which was very light and slightly acidic with cassis on the nose. Our amuse bouche were crispy toasted baguette with white sardines.

Tomate Et Chocolat Tomate Et Chocolat, Nevers

Tomate Et Chocolat

We both had the Moules de bouchet to start. The mussels came from Mont-St.-Michel which we have visited and they were fantastic. I had a very tasty steak done blue for my main course which was served with a vin rouge, and brilliant vegetables. Dave had the same vegetables with his fish main course which was served with a pesto de sésame. I am going to try and make this at home.

Our Meal Tomate Et Chocolat, Nevers

Our Meal

Dessert was listed on the menu as le cheesecake au citron vert and both Dave and I commented that they did not use the French for cheesecake. It was very smooth and full of lemon. Dave had the carpacio d’orange which was served with a very minty glace. Dave had an espresso to end which was served with biscuits.

Desserts Tomate Et Chocolat, Nevers

Desserts

Contact them on +33 (0)3 86 69 05 63 and reservations are highly recommended.

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Recipe For Candied ClemenGold Rusks

ClemenGold recently held a competition which entailed submitting recipes to them and they would decide on a winner. I did not expect to win anything as I did not come up with a special recipe, but I did want to show my support for a brand that has previously supported me. I chose to make candied ClemenGold rusks as I am still enjoying playing around with rusk flavours and I love having these as my breakfast before gym. ClemenGolds are unique to South Africa and sold at our local Woolworths stores. In your area you should be able to find tangerines or clementines which will give you the same flavour note. If you cannot find either then substitute using oranges. I added fresh raspberries as these are now available all year round from Woolworths, and they are a fruit I love using. After submitting my recipe I was quite surprised to get an email saying that I had won something for my submission. I have a gift voucher from Woolworths to spend on what ever my heart desires. I am saving them up for a special treat for myself as using the money to buy groceries would not be a real reward.

Do you have a rusk flavour combination I should try?

Candied ClemenGold Rusks Recipe For Candied ClemenGold Rusks

Candied ClemenGold Rusks

Recipe For Candied ClemenGold Rusks

The addition of fresh raspberries to these rusks give them a few soft bites of sweetness.

Ingredients:

  • 250g self raising flour
  • 1.25mls baking powder
  • 2.5ms fine salt
  • 88g sugar - I used fructose
  • 30g candied clemengolds, roughly chopped
  • 125g fresh raspberries, cut in half
  • 125g butter, melted
  • 125mls buttermilk
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten

Method:

  • Preheat the oven to 180° Celsius
  • Line a loaf tin with baking paper
  • Place the dry ingredients into a large mixing bowl and mix in gently so as to not break the raspberries
  • Mix together the butter, buttermilk and egg
  • Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and pour in the liquid ingredients
  • Mix gently until well combined
  • Pour the batter into the loaf tin
  • Bake for 45 minutes
  • Remove from the oven and leave to cool
  • Preheat the oven to 40° Celsius
  • Cut into chunks and bake for 3 hours to dry out
http://tandysinclair.com/candied-clemengold-rusks/
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The Boy That Never Was, Karen Perry

The Boy That Never Was opening line: A storm is rising.

The Boy That Never Was The Boy That Never Was, Karen Perry

The Boy That Never Was

I found this book to be well written and a real page turner but I kept on waiting to hear that the boy was merely a figment of Harry’s imagination. Robin and Harry are artists who move to Tangier to capture the light. They have a child, Dillon, and lose him and the book deals with their reaction to the loss and their lives back in Ireland. The end offers a twist one would not expect.

First published in the United States of America by Henry Holt and Company and in Great Britain by Michael Joseph in 2014

ISBN number 978-1-405-91291-4

Paperback – 310 pages

Disclaimer: I was sent the book to review by Penguin Books South Africa. I was not required to write a positive review. This disclaimer is in line with my blogging policy.

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Recipe For Swiss Meringue

It is quite amazing how the same situation can be experienced in two completely different ways. About 4 years ago I went in to our local Foschini department store, which is nationwide, to purchase some perfume. They were selling off all their stock of Cacharel perfume and as this is the only brand I wear, I bought all the bottles that they had. It was only when I got home and unpacked the 5 bottles did I realize that I should have asked them for the tester bottle, which was quite full, as it would no longer serve any purpose. Last month, before we left for overseas I went to a local department store, Friedman and Cohen, to price perfume. They had one bottle left of the Tentation and it worked out to €40 for 100mls. In France, this same bottle cost €80! Last time I bought perfume in France it was way cheaper than what I could get at home, and it came with lovely gifts and a bag full of samples that I am still using when we travel. However, at double the price I was not going to splurge out. I happened to be at Friedman and Cohen for something else this past week, and they still had the one bottle left. Not wanting to lose out on a bargain, I bought it. And, the lovely sales lady gave me the tester bottle (which I had not even seen), without me saying a word! The bottle is nearly full and so I doubt I will have to purchase perfume again in a hurry as my old bottle is still about half full. I was so impressed with the service and from now on, all my perfume will be purchased at this store.

Another thing which impressed me was the Swiss Meringue I made with fructose. Meringues themselves do not work with fructose, but Swiss meringue which is prepared in a different manner worked perfectly, and I was able to indulge in these amazing grapefruit curd tarts.

Grapefruit Curd Topped With Swiss Meringue Recipe For Swiss Meringue

Grapefruit Curd Topped With Swiss Meringue

Swiss Meringue

Swiss meringue is made by first dissolving the sugar over a bain marie, and then whisking it into the egg whites until glossy.

Ingredients:

  • 2 egg whites
  • 85g castor sugar - I used fructose

Method:

  • Put the eggs whites into the bowl of your stand mixer
  • Place this bowl over a bain-marie
  • Whisk by hand until the sugar has completely dissolved
  • Remove from the heat and using the balloon whisk attachment on your stand mixer, beat for 2 minutes on the lowest speed
  • Increase to a medium speed and continue beating for 4 minutes
  • Use to top a lemon meringue pie, key lime pie etc.
  • Place under the grill for 2 minutes to scorch or use a blow torch if you have one
http://tandysinclair.com/swiss-meringue/
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Swiss Meringue Recipe For Swiss Meringue

Swiss Meringue

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The Family Cook Book, Kerryann Dunlop

The Family Cook Book is the first book in the series of Jamie Oliver’s Food Tube books. Kerryann was a student at Fifteen and joined in their first year. She now works in a children’s nursery and says “you don’t need lots of money to eat well – you just need to be clever about how you shop and how you cook” (paraphrased).

The Family Cook Book The Family Cook Book, Kerryann Dunlop

The Family Cook Book

The book contains 50 no-nonsense recipes every household needs and is divided into 5 categories. Before Kerryann gets on to the recipes she shares tips for making food fun, which include getting your children involved and sitting down to eat as a family – something we really believe in. In the breakfast section I am going to try the cornmeal porridge (p28) as it is made with coconut milk. For snacks and quick fixes, which include both sweet treats and healthy snacks, the menemen Turkish style eggs (p50) caught my attention as I love eggs done this way for a special breakfast. It is worth noting that these contain chillies, something most kids do not have a palate for. Batch cooking is a great concept for working mums and the recipes here include roasted tomato soup (p62), cottage pie (p66) and majestical mac ‘n’ cheese (p70). For dinner time there is homemade fish fingers (p86), roast chicken dinner (p88) and salmon and pea risotto (p102) which all show that home made is always best. I will definitely try the griddled courgettes (p108) and the honey and cumin-roasted carrots (p122) from the sides as it is great to have new ideas for the vegetables we eat.

oat and raisin cookies The Family Cook Book, Kerryann Dunlop

oat and raisin cookies

Even though this book was sent to me by Penguin Books South Africa to review, I am not allowed to publish a recipe from the book due to it being an international publication. I did however test the recipe for oat and raisin cookies (p42), substituting the golden syrup for honey and the caster sugar for fructose. I made half of the recipe as only Dave and I would be enjoying this treat and it made 20 cookies. The recipe states it will make 26. We enjoyed the cookies, which were not very crunchy but were very tasty. This is a great book for any new mum, who wants to learn to cook for her family.

First published by the Penguin Group in 2014

ISBN number 978-0-718-17919-9

Paperback – 127 pages

Disclaimer: I was sent the book to review by Penguin Books South Africa. I was not required to write a positive review. This disclaimer is in line with my blogging policy.

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Recipe For Bitterballen

Bitterballen Recipe For Bitterballen

Bitterballen

When translated from Dutch into English, the word bitterballen means bitter balls. I have someone in mind who I would like to give bitterballen to! Recently we were in Paris for a weekend and spent a lovely evening out with a couple who are in their 80’s. The lady who we were with is dignified and ‘proper’ and you will never see her without being suitably attired, even when she is in her pyjamas. She has her hair done once a weak, wears make up and her lipstick and nail polish always match! She is the epitome of what a lady is in my mind, and reminds me of my maternal grandmother. She was telling us that while they were on a trip with a friend, the friend’s wife, and two of the friend’s employees, and their wives she was assaulted. The one employee, hit her across her head. He is in his 50’s I would guess, and in no ways a gentleman. He hit her so hard that her hearing aid fell out and that in itself must have been quite frightening. She asked him why he had hit her and his response was “do you want another klap (smack)?”. I think a man like that deserves his balls hit very hard! And an assault case laid against him. The sad thing is that she will not tell her friend, the persons boss, and she has asked that we do not tell him either. I cannot believe that someone can do something so wrong and the worst thing is, he will get away with this behaviour as she is scared. While I send wishes of bitterballen to him, I must share that bitterballen are not bitter at all. They are meant to be served with a pint of bitters, a type of beer.

A Bite Out Of A Bitterballen Recipe For Bitterballen

A Bite Out Of A Bitterballen

Bitterballen

Adapted from About Food

Ingredients:

    For the meat
  • 10mls olive oil
  • 500g stewing beef, cut into large strips
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to season
  • 1 small onion, peeled and quartered
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 whole cloves
  • A few sprigs of thyme
  • 500mls water
  • For the salpicon
  • 50g butter
  • 50g flour
  • 500mls beef stock (made from cooking the meat)
  • 60g spring onions, sliced
  • 4 x 1.65g sheets gelatine
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to season
  • a pinch of nutmeg
  • 45mls finely chopped flat leaf parsley
  • 15mls Dijon mustard
  • For the Bitterballen (this will do 6)
  • Oil for deep frying
  • 10g seasoned flour
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 65g fresh breadcrumbs

Method:

  • Heat the oil in a large sauté pan that has a lid
  • Brown the beef, and season well
  • Add the onion, bay leaf. cloves, thyme and water
  • Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and cover
  • Leave to simmer for 2 hours
  • Remove the meat and set aside to cool
  • Once cool, cut into small cubes
  • Strain the beef stock and set aside to use for the salpicon
  • For the salpicon
  • Using the same sauté pan, melt the butter over a medium heat
  • Add the flour and mix in thoroughly
  • Leave to cook for one minute
  • Add the reserved beef stock slowly, whisking the entire time to ensure you do not get lumps
  • Add the spring onions and leave to simmer for 30 minutes
  • Place the gelatine into a bowl of cold water and leave for 5 minutes
  • Wring out, and add to the simmering salpicon
  • Mix in thoroughly and then season to taste
  • Add the nutmeg, parsley, mustard and the beef and mix in
  • Adjust the seasoning and then place the mixture into a bowl
  • Cover with clingfilm and leave in the fridge until set - this took me overnight
  • For the Bitterballen
  • Place the oil into a suitable sauce pan and heat to 180° Celsius
  • Scoop out 60mls of the beef and roll into rounds shapes
  • Dip each ball into the flour and then into the egg and breadcrumbs
  • Repeat the egg and breadcrumb stage
  • Deep fry the balls for 50 seconds until golden brown
  • Remove from the oil and place onto paper towel to drain
  • Serve hot, with a cold beer

Cooks Notes:

I am not a fan of deep frying, but baking is not an option with this mixture. I decided to only make 6 bitterballen to make sure the recipe worked. With the rest of the salpicon I made pies.

http://tandysinclair.com/bitterballen/
 Recipe For Bitterballen

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Blog-checking lines: The October Daring Cooks’ Challenge was brought to us by Andrea from 4pure. She introduced us to one of her family favorites which is soon to become one of yours, too. Welcome to the world of Dutch Bitterballen!

Bitterballen Pie Recipe For Bitterballen

Bitterballen Pie

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Recipe For Kale Pesto

If I could have any undercover job in the world I would choose to be a traffic officer. I don’t want the tedious chores like directing traffic, manning roadblocks or speed traps and checking drivers’ licenses. I want to be a real undercover traffic officer, the one in the unmarked car, who stops the idiots on the roads. Every morning I would be able to stop a lot of cars. We travel on a major road into work each day, and the speed limit is 80 kilometres per hour. However, most cars and trucks disregard this and travel at least at 100 kilometres per hour, if not more. I would also be able to stop the trucks and vans that pull into the road without regard for the traffic, and the people who go through red robots. In the afternoons I would stop all the people who do not know how to use a traffic circle. For some odd reason, people assume that if they are on the major road they can just go! Well, I would stop and tell them “no”, that is not how a traffic circle works! So, if you are in doubt about how to go around a traffic circle carry on reading! As you enter a traffic circle remember to look right (if you drive on the left hand side of the road). You always yield to the right. If there is a car to your right then wait for it to pass you, and of course stating the obvious, if there is no car then go! And be decisive. Once you are in the traffic circle you must move. In a small traffic circle indicate as if you were at a normal intersection. In a large traffic circle such as the ones we get in Welkom, or that you find in Paris, indicate when you enter the circle and when you exit. These large traffic circles might have a priority entrance. Also, in a traffic circle where there are two lanes keep in mind that the outer lane as you enter is for turning left and going straight, and the inner lane as you enter is for going straight and turning right.

Now that the traffic lesson is over, let’s turn to a simple recipe lesson. Kale Pesto is easy to make. I have an abundance of kale in my garden which at present is feeding the caterpillars. I am looking forward to a garden full of butterflies soon! I keep changing my mind about where to put my vegetable garden and I have decided to go back to my original plan of having a pavement garden so that I can share my abundance with people who walk past our house. In the meantime, the kale is in the ‘old’ garden and the dogs just love walking through all the plants icon smile Recipe For Kale Pesto

Kale Pesto Recipe For Kale Pesto

Kale Pesto

Kale Pesto

This is an iron rich pesto which is perfect to add to any vegetable side dish you are cooking.

Ingredients:

  • 130g kale leaves, stem removed, roughly chopped
  • 160mls olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 50g Brazil nuts
  • 55g sunflower seeds
  • 55g pumpkin seeds
  • 60mls lemon juice
  • 10mls dulse flakes
  • 5mls Salt

Method:

  • Place the kale and the oil into a food processor and process until smooth
  • Add the garlic, nuts, seeds, lemon juice and dulse and continue blending
  • Add the salt and give it one final blitz
  • Place into sterilized glass jar
http://tandysinclair.com/kale-pesto/
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Recipe For Jerusalem Artichoke Soup

Any time I can learn something about myself is a good time! It helps me become more aware of life around me, and how I deal with it. On our recent holiday to France I realized how much of my life is routine and how that affects me. When we are at home, I like routine. And not just the daily routine I have developed, but the weekly routine I am used to. I am not inflexible and will do things on the spur of the moment, but disrupting my routine is not something I choose to do. When we are overseas, I have no routine. I just go with the flow and do what ever Dave has chosen for that day. I don’t do the cooking while we are away from home so there are no choices for me to make. I can make suggestions, but the cooking is Dave’s domain. This holiday our plans were disrupted and Dave was the one whose sense of routine was affected. He likes to know where we are going and what we are doing every day while we are overseas. He took a morning to sort out travel arrangements and one day was spent driving with only a few stops. It was only after this that Dave finally relaxed and we could spend time taking it slow, not being in a rush and playing tourist. Our holiday was quite exhausting for a lot of reasons and we got home in time for a late lunch after being in airports or in planes for nearly 24 hours. Thankfully a bowl of soup was the perfect meal, and had I had more of this Jerusalem Artichoke Soup that would have been my first choice. It is silky smooth and the perfect lunch time meal.

Jerusalem Artichoke Soup Recipe For Jerusalem Artichoke Soup

Jerusalem Artichoke Soup

Jerusalem Artichoke Soup

This recipe results in a smooth and silky soup full of flavour

Ingredients:

  • 350g peeled Jerusalem artichokes, cubed
  • 500mls chicken stock
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to season

Method:

  • Place the Jerusalem artichokes and stock into a pot
  • Bring to the boil and then reduce the heat
  • Cover and simmer for 15 minutes
  • Leave to cool
  • Purée until smooth
  • Place back on the stove and reheat
  • Adjust the seasoning before serving
http://tandysinclair.com/jerusalem-artichoke-soup/
 Recipe For Jerusalem Artichoke Soup

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St-Sébastien, Nevers

Dave and I found ourselves walking through the old city of Nevers, dragging our suitcases over cobbled stones, looking for the hotel we had booked ourselves into. The French can be so friendly and helpful and while we were being given assistance with the map, we saw a very inviting looking restaurant. We did not eat here on our first night as by the time we had found our hotel we were tired, and ready for something quick and easy to eat. On our second evening in Nevers we decided to eat at St-Sébastien and I think we made an excellent choice. We were served a thicky and creamy and really delicious pumpkin soup as an amouse bouche. The owner told us that he fed his pig all the left over vegetables and last year they had an abundance of pumpkin to feed him. He was slaughtered for the table and only a year later did the owner walk down to his paddock to discover a field of pumpkins. This was definitely a good example of farm to fork.

Wine St Sébastien, Nevers

Wine

We chose a bottle of Château Lacombe Noaillac 2009 (€23) to enjoy with our meal. We sipped on the wine while reading the menu, which is all in French. The wine is light and from a vineyard established in 1834. It overlooks the estuary Gironde in the Bordeaux region. The nose and palate displayed red fruit, especially red currant and there were no tannins.

Starters St Sébastien, Nevers

Starters

The owner willingly helped us translate what we did not understand on the menu. Dave had the croustillant die peids de porc to start which was served cold, in a tasty pastry. The pigs trotters were served with a sauce gribiche. The portion was generous. I had the poivrons rouges pelée to start. The red peppers were chargrilled and served cold with a vinaigrette.

Main Course St Sébastien, Nevers

Main Course

Given that we were in beef country I chose the Tartare de bœuf Français as my main course. The beef was handcut and coarse in texture and had a hint of heat and was served with the most divine potatoes. Dave had the Pave de maigre which is like a sea bass and was served with a fantastic Hollandaise sauce. Hidden under the fish were the most delicious leeks.

Dessert St Sébastien, Nevers

Dessert

Dessert for Dave was the Cafè gourmond salon l’humeur du chef and the selection of little taste treats with an espresso was the perfect way to end a meal. The desserts on the platter that night was a crepe, a choux bun, blackberry sorbet and a fig compote. The sorbet was by far the favourite.

The menu is seasonal and changes daily, sometimes twice a day! Everything is fresh and one can see what drew the owners to purchasing the restaurant as the atmosphere is fantastic. The grand stair case makes a central feature and gives one the feeling of dining in a old establishment.

The plat de jour costs €14.99 for 2 courses and €19.99 for 3 courses. You can find the restaurant at 9 place San Sebastian or call them on +33 (0)3 86 36 26 44

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