All things Red

Baked figs and Blue cheese

Baked figs and Blue cheese

I am still in my red phase, or fig phase, don’t know which, which started with the red Afghan carpet I bought. I need very visually stimulating food and things around me and that is not a phase, it is just how it is.

I just put the blue cheese in the sliced figs with a sprig of thyme and baked at 180 until soft and gooyy. Green grapes and baked figs made a great salad in what is a hot summer in Cape Town.

Baked figs and ice cold green grapes

Baked figs and ice cold green grapes

Red post or not, this blue fig one will go to the Cheese, Please! April challenge featuring the blues.

Cheese Please!Blog Challenge

Cheese Please!Blog Challenge

We are doing short over-night road trips over weekends to the wine farms and surrounds to clear the brain and I always pick up fresh produce and cheeses along the way. I wish we had time for a longer break but alas, it will not happen now.

Ataraxia Wine Farm, Hemel&Aarde Valley

Ataraxia Wine Farm, Hemel&Aarde Valley

Figs will always remind me of the huge fig tree in front of our house when I started my school years in George, Eastern Cape. There was often a big juicy red fig in my packed lunch, which even then I could not wait to get my teeth into. Strange if you think that others had sweets or crisps and I wanted fruit, strange kid indeed. I am still strange, come to think of it.

Figs, Feta & Capers

Figs, Feta & Capers

This fig salad was made with baby spinach, sun-dried tomato feta and capers(my latest craze).

Baked Ricotta&Beetroot Pots

Baked Ricotta&Beetroot Pots

The funny red concoction happened when I adjusted my baked Ricotta Vegetable Pots Recipe to make baked beetroot and ricotta pots. Dark, deep red. Oh, and of course I added vintage cheddar to the beetroot mix. Great combination. Instead of pouring the ricotta mix over oven baked beetroot(drizzled with balsamic cream), I mixed the beetroot and ricotta mix with added vintage cheddar in a mixer to form a paste and then baked it in individual ramekins. Do NOT forget to put the lid on the mixer…ahem…uh, okay it took very long to clean the kitchen……

Random Photo:

Good night Cape Town

Lion's Head Cape Town

Lion’s Head Cape Town

Roast lamb and farewell lunches

I prepared a farewell Sunday lunch of sorts today.

“Of sorts” because every lunch and dinner these past weeks had that farewell feeling of meals with meaning and meals with a brick in my throat every time I see me daughter’s face, who is yet again leaving for a year’s working stint overseas.

Excited for her and she is doing exactly what I would have done but still, oh but still…..the mind understands but the heart is not on the same page.

She had a list of favourite things to eat and meals to have when she returned from Chile last year and the same list is repeating itself for the “I am leaving again” list and then some! This time the destination is South Korea and I have absolutely no idea if she will find some of the ingredients there, or all, or nothing but she is leaving armed with a few favourite handwritten recipes to try on her own there in the faraway lands.

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On the menu:

  • Roast lamb in apple and white wine sauce- the recipe is that of Nataniel, a well known foodie and cook in South Africa and he made it on his television program Die Nataniel Tafel. See http://www.dienatanieltafel.co.za
  • Pumpkin fritter with caramel cream sauce- yes we did not hold back on the sugar today….my son eats these for desert he loves it so much
  • Green beans with red pepper, onion and feta
  • Green salad followed by chocolate mousse
  • Music on the go- golden oldies

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Pumpkin Fritters with creamy caramel sauce

1 cup cold cooked pumkin (any variety)

1 cup flour

1 egg

1,5 teaspoon baking powder

25 ml sugar

2 cups vegetable oil-to deepfry the fritters

Mix the ingredients together and fry spoons full in oil over medium heat until cooked through-drain on kitchen paper

Caramel Sauce:

Boil over medium heat until thick

2/3 cups cream

25 ml butter

2 teaspoons vanilla essence

1/3 cup sugar

Pour over the fritters.

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Leg of Lamb with apple and white wine sauce

2kg leg of lamb-season with salt and pepper to taste

250 ml apple juice

180 ml white wine

1 grated apple

1 onion-diced

2 table spoons flour

salt and pepper

fresh thyme

Seal the meat in a pan and therafter lightly fry the onion in the pan juices.

Put the meat in a casserole, pour over the wine and apple juice and add salt and pepper to taste again. Add grated apple and fried onions and a few sprigs of thyme and bake for 3 hours covered on 150 degrees Celsius.

Remove the leg of lamb from the casserole dish and place in an open dish for 30 minutes in the oven. Pour the juice/sauce in a saucepan, thicken with the flour to make a thick sauce.Taste the sauce and season (if necessary) to taste.Serve with the warm carved meat. Thank you for this recipe Nataniel!

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