Friday’s Food Quiz Number 56

My friend PinkPolkaDot has posted this week’s quiz, and here are my answers. If you would like to do the quiz, please pop on over to her blog to let her know.

1. What is “elachi” more commonly known as?

cardamom. I bought some white cardamom in France in the most beautiful bottle.

2. What spices are traditionally in Garam Masala?

cinnamon, mace, cardamom, rose petals, coriander, cloves, cumin, fennel, bay leaves … and to see the rest, click above for the recipe

3. What is bhajias?

Indian sweets

4. To which family does watercress belong?

the cabbage family

5. What are the main ingredients of Halva?

Sesame seed paste / tahini and sugar. I once ate only halva for a few days and experienced my first and last bout of air sickness and I have not had any halva since

6. What is the culinary term for soaking fruit or vegetables in a sugar and alcohol syrup to infuse flavour?


7. What are the ingredients of advocaat?

this reminds me of egg nog at Christmas, so I would guess, eggs, sugar and Brandy

8. Caraway seeds are native to which continent?

Asia or Europe. There seems to be a shortage of these seeds at the moment as I cannot find any!

9 Which country produces the highest quantity of pineapples?

I know it is not Swaziland! I have eaten pineapples all over the far east, Australasia and the America’s and I am going to guess Hawaii

10. What does “to flute” mean?

could it be when you make an opening in the top of a pie and use one of those pie flutes to let the steam out?


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Something Sweet

I love to bake, and usually my weekend baking is the same chocolate cake, or a variation thereof. So, the something sweet challenge is to get me baking something new, something I have not tried before. Please do the challenge, even if you use a tried and tested recipe!

The challenge this week is to bake something spices

If you take part in the challenge please link back to my blog, and leave a comment here that you have done the challenge. A weekly round up will be done each Friday. As usual, there is no end date to the challenge.


Mirimoo has come up with a beautiful spicy pork dish. Cindy made a hearty stew with butternut and short ribs. Mirimoo has also contributed a stuffed gem squash recipe. Mandy has shared with us a family recipe for pumpkin pie.

Don’t forget, if you live in the JHB region, you can win this!


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Maxine May of Dromedaris

12/5/2002 – 10/6/2011

maxi Maxine May of Dromedaris

© maxine may

Yesterday my darling baby we sent you to chase rabbits and hopefully you will be pain free. You were loved from the first moment I set my eyes on you. Every day since March 2004 has been a gift. For that we owe a deep sense of gratitude to Bruce, Brenda and Megan for doing everything they could to save your life, and your leg. You never once complained about having to go for surgery every three days or cried when we changed your dressings twice daily. And in the last 6 months you have not once shown how much pain you must have been in as the arthritis set into you spine so badly that your good leg was no longer functioning.

You had the most amazing temperament and the children have loved your kisses and good nature. You were the best ‘sister’ to Patch and she is bereft that your basket came home without you. I will miss you my nunu’s!

Maxine not only had the most awful spinal arthritis which would have resulted her in not being able to walk within the next two weeks, she also had a tumour near her heart which was pushing the trachea out of position.

Thank you Brenda, Megan and Chantel for taking care of Maxine and to Cottage Vets for trying all you could to see what was wrong with Maxine and especially big hugs to Megan who did the hardest thing yesterday and was there when they put you to sleep. Maxine did not recognize me when I went to say goodbye but I know she knew she was loved right to the end and she will hold a special place in our hearts forever.


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Recipe For Pesto Princess Chicken

One of the sponsors of this year’s Food Bloggers Indaba was Pesto Princess. They offer up the most amazing pesto’s and each one is better than the next. The company ticks all the right boxes for me, and if ever I buy pesto, theirs is the one I go for.  I have taken this blurb off their facebook page:

  • About 10 years ago, Kathleen Quillinan discovered pesto for herself, and tried her hand at it with the help of a 1970′s orange blender from a junk shop. She started selling to friends, small supermarkets and deli’s, and soon had to hunt for factory premises and staff, since there was definitely a more appreciative audience out there for her pesto than for her previous endeavours – that of an opera singer!

I first came across this product when we moved to the Western Cape 10 years ago, and her husband told me the story of Kathleen wanting to be an opera singer – I am glad for my palate that her dream of singing did not come true. One of the lovely products in my overflowing goody bag from the show was a bottle of Red Pesto which is made from sweet red peppers and sun dried tomatoes. I used this pesto to create a dish I could cook in my tagine as I prefer slow cooking chicken to ensure it stays moist.

Pesto Princess Chicken Recipe For Pesto Princess Chicken

Pesto Princess Chicken

Pesto Princess Chicken


  • 15mls olive oil
  • 2 chicken thighs
  • 2 chicken drum sticks
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to season
  • 1 onion, cut in half and then sliced
  • 125g mushrooms, sliced
  • 200g rosa tomatoes, cut in half
  • 15mls olive tapenade
  • 15mls red pesto
  • 125mls white wine


  • heat the olive oil in a thick bottomed pot
  • season and brown the chicken
  • remove from the pot and sauté the onion until soft
  • add the mushrooms, the tomatoes, the tapenade and the pesto
  • put the chicken back in the pot and add the wine
  • allow to simmer with the lid on for 30 minutes
  • then take the lid off and cook for a further 10 minutes to thicken the sauce
 Recipe For Pesto Princess Chicken

PS I really need to pay attention to my background in my photo’s – here you can see the corner of my stove and the lovely Le Creuset Oval Casserole that was gifted to me


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Oak Smoked Red Bell Pepper Chicken

I love new products, which explains why I have a kitchen drawer and cupboard full of lovely goodies waiting to be used. One new (to me) exciting product that I came across last year was the Oak Smoked Red Bell Pepper from the Smoking Shed – a company co-founded by our very own blogger Sam Linsell of Drizzle and Dip. I had used the product very successfully with steak before I decided to come up with a recipe specifically for chicken. Your kitchen will have this lovely smell of oak hanging around, and the flavour the seasoning adds to your food is really fantastic. I would highly recommend that you take the time out to find this wonderful condiment.

c2a9 oak smoked red bell pepper chicken1 Oak Smoked Red Bell Pepper Chicken

© oak smoked red bell pepper chicken



150g yoghurt

1 teaspoon oak smoked red bell pepper

2 chicken wings

2 chicken thighs

salt and freshly ground black pepper for seasoning

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 rashers bacon

2 tomatoes, chopped

½ cup white wine

1 cup frozen peas

1 teaspoon arrowroot


place the yoghurt and the bell pepper into a ziploc bag

season the chicken pieces and add to the yoghurt

seal the bag and gently rub the yoghurt over the chicken pieces

refrigerate for 30 minutes

heat the olive oil in a pot

cook the bacon until the fat has rendered down

remove and brown the chicken thighs – reserve the yoghurt

chop up the bacon and add back to the pot with the tomatoes, yoghurt and wine

cover and simmer for 30 minutes until the chicken is cooked

add the peas and cook until hot

thicken the sauce with arrowroot

Printable Version


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Broad (Fava) Bean and Pea Farfalloni Recipe

I wanted to write a series of recipes to submit to a magazine for consideration and started with the concept of doing pasta recipes. But, in the very month I wanted to send them in, the magazine did a whole series in preparation for the Argus Cycle Tour. Completely having missed the boat on that one, I saved the recipes but once again, pasta was in fashion with the Comrades Marathon. I am going to put my thinking cap on and come up with another series of recipes for the magazine, but in the mean time I will share with you the recipes I jotted down. Fava beans in Italy are known as broad beans here and in the UK and are a vibrant green bean that has to be double podded to enjoy to their fullest. This takes time and effort, but it is well worth it. Medically these beans are quite interesting and so I would recommend that you do not eat them raw. They are rich in tyramine and so should be avoided if you are taking Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors.  However, if you have Parkinson’s disease or hypertension, they are a recommended addition to your diet.

c2a9 broad bean and pea farfalloni Broad (Fava) Bean and Pea Farfalloni Recipe

© broad bean and pea farfalloni

Broad (Fava) Bean and Pea Farfalloni


  • 140g broad beans
  • 15mls olive oil
  • 1 large shallot, chopped
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper to season
  • 1 garlic clove, chopped
  • 140g frozen peas
  • 30mls cream
  • 15mls fresh thyme leaves, picked


  • put the water for your pasta on to boil
  • when your pasta water has boiled, place the broad beans into the water and boil for 5 minutes
  • remove and refresh in cold water
  • now start cooking your pasta as per the packet instructions
  • in a large frying pan, heat the oil
  • sauté the shallot until soft
  • season with salt and add the garlic
  • when the garlic is soft, add the peas
  • add the cream and season to taste
  • add the thyme and allow to gently cook while you pod your broad beans
  • add the broad beans and adjust the seasoning before adding the pasta
  • you may need to add 1 tablespoon of the pasta water to loosen the sauce
 Broad (Fava) Bean and Pea Farfalloni Recipe

I am submitting this recipe to Presto Pasta Nights, which is being hosted this week by Kirsten – From Kirsten’s Kitchen To Yours


 some information sourced from Wikipedia

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Friday's Food Quiz Number 55

It is Monday and I am doing Friday’s quiz posted by my friend PinkPolkaDot. Please see her blog if you would like to take part. Here are my answers:

1. Kimchi is a fermented condiment from which country?

Korean – this is thanks to reading Lara’s blog all about her one year stay in Korea, teaching English

2. Name three Asian greens?

Bok Choy, Choy Sum, Mustard Greens

3. If I talk about Fuerte, Pinkerton and Hass, what am I referring to?

Avocados – in season right now!

4. What is Tahini?

A paste made from Sesame seeds

5. Pad Thai is one of the national dishes of which country?


6. What are the main ingredients of Pad Thai?

rice noodles, chicken, tamarind sauce, bean sprouts, fish sauce, coriander, lime and chillies (I am trying to figure out what I put in my Thai dishes)

7. What is Tamarind?

the tamarind fruit resembles a broad bean pod, and the pulp is used to make tamarind sauce by soaking it in water.

8. What is considered as the three ingredients of the Asian “holy trinity” in culinary terms?

chilli, garlic and ginger

9. What is the main difference between Scotch whiskey and Irish whiskey?

 Whisky or Scotch, refers to whisky produced in Scotland and is barrel fermented in oak barrels. Irish Whiskey (notice the spelling differences) has to be fermented in wooden barrels.

10. Under what circumstances is Panga on SASSI’s green list?

I am still not convinced that SASSI is 100% right with its allocation of certain fishes to specific status’ but for Panga trawl bycatch is considered orange and linefished panha is green.


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Cinnamon Boutique Guest House and Restaurant, Wilderness

We have been to The Wilderness numerous times, and this is the first time we have seen Cinnamon Boutique. It is a lovely house, accessed via a boardwalk over the garden and is tranquil and welcoming. The hosts, Desmond and Johan, are wonderful and amusing. You would do well to book a table here for dinner if you are ever in the area as the setting and the evening will be memorable.

c2a9 cinnamon boutique guest house and restaurant Cinnamon Boutique Guest House and Restaurant, Wilderness

© cinnamon boutique guest house and restaurant

MARCH 2011

We started our evening with a whiskey at the bar, with Desmond asking us how on earth we could drink a single malt from Islay as it is so peaty! After slowly enjoying the warming pre dinner drink, and choosing our wine – De Grendel Merlot 2008, we were shown to our table overlooking the swimming pool.

The wine list is excellent and well priced and has a great ‘by the glass’ option. Our table was adorned with decent cutlery, linen napkins and a tea light that was covered and so did not disturb my vision. Out of a choice of 9 starters priced from R45 – R65 I chose the carpaccio of ostrich fillet (R65) and Dave chose the biltong dusted cheese soufflé (R55). Dave noticed that the biltong was not that evident. After our starters we were given a palate cleanser sorbet.

For our main course I decided to have the creamy garlic mussels (R75) to which Johan was most vocal about ‘how can you eat those things?’ Out of the 10 dishes on offer (R70 – R175) Dave chose the springbok bobotie (R130) which came with a great array of sambals. I did not have to ask for a bowl for the mussel shells which is impressive, even though expected.

The dessert list (R50 – R65) includes a cheese platter which is always a plus sign for me. I however chose the crème brûlée (R50) and was not disappointed.

The service was professional and unobtrusive and I can highly recommend a meal here if you are spending the weekend in this beautiful part of the Garden Route.

As an aside, we were not charged for our whiskey’s and we went back the next day to pay – it was appreciated.

Contact them on 044 877 1324


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Competition – Win These Beautiful Flowers

My Mom, Monica went on a course to learn to make sugar flowers – and I could not wait to get her to show me how to make them. You have to be very patient but I must say the end result was worth having to start over a few times. My one flower was no where near as good as my mom’s, and she has really impressed me with her work.

c2a9 roses Competition   Win These Beautiful Flowers

© roses

You can order flowers or a cake for a special occasion by contacting Monica via email If you live in the Johannesburg area you could win a single layer, 20cm round cake iced and with flowers.

c2a9 sweatpeas Competition   Win These Beautiful Flowers

© sweatpeas

In order to win this you have to participate in one of the challenges I set this month. I will decide who the winner is and let you know. Please just drop a comment here if you do a challenge.


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Regional and Seasonal

The regional and seasonal challenge is based on produce that is in season in the Southern Hemisphere. It was inspired by the volcanic ash disruption to flights in 2010. One of my first aims is to use produce that is in season, and farmed locally. I choose these food items over organic. The bonus to me is if I can find organic produce that is locally farmed.

The challenge for this week is to use pumpkin or squash. There is no end date to the challenge as this is about challenging yourself to make use of a regional and seasonal product, hopefully in a way you have not done so before.

If you decide to take part in my weekly challenge, please link back to my blog in your post and leave me a comment to let me know you have done so. I will do a weekly round up of all posts.

This month I am going to be giving something away to one Johannesburg based blogger – watch this space!


Hayley has provided is with an asian slaw, and a write up on ethically sourced products! Cindy has made meatballs using the spices I set for the ingredient challenge. Hayley has made a buckwheat and butter bean soup. My challenge had the idea of chermoula!


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