Gingerbread Goodness

Gingerbread Goodness

It’s that time of year, the festive season. Luckily for us, we are sitting in the heart of summer, so we are spending our days basking in the sun on the beach, sipping on copious amounts of cocktails, cooling down with granidilla ice lollies and fulfilling our appetites with fresh sushi or lemon drenched garlic prawns. 

  

So why gingerbread? This recipe, to me, means that everyone can gather around the kitchen counter, cookie cutters in hand, and bake, then go slightly crazy by grabbing a piping bag and releasing their inner Picasso. These can then be devoured during the evenings, or gifted to kids at a shelter! 

I think you should wake up everyday and be thankful for family and friends that you hold dear, but this time of year, we tend to get all emotional about being home, cooking feasts and spending time with the ones that we hardly see! Having fun with this recipe will give you that much needed family time, that you wouldn’t generally get to spend together, because…life! 

  
  
Fair warning, this recipe needs to refrigerate overnight, so make a batch and plan when you are going to have a baking session! They keep fresh for 1 week in an airtight container.  

Gingerbread Biscuits

  • 3 cups of flour 
  • 4 tsp of ground ginger
  • 3 tsp of ground cinnamon 
  • 1 tsp of baking powder 
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg 
  • 1/4 tsp fine salt 
  • 3/4 cup of soften unsalted butter 
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar 
  • 1/2 cup of golden syrup 
  • 1 egg 
  • 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract 

Mix the flour, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and baking powder in a large bowl. 

In a mixer, add your butter and sugar to the bowl, with the paddle beater attachment, beat on medium, until creamy and fluffy! Add the egg, vanilla and golden syrup, mix to incorporate. Starting on the lowest speed, gradually add the flour until well mixed. Take the dough out the bowl, and shape into a ball,  flatten this slightly and wrap with plastic. 

Pop into the fridge and leave to rest overnight. 

Preheat your oven to 180C 

Grease your oven trays well. Starting my softening the dough with your hands, and then roll it out to about 1cm thick. Cut out your shapes (gingerbread men or what ever shapes you wish) 

Bake for 8 to 10 minutes until the edges are slightly golden 

Remove from the oven and leave to cool on the trays before transferring them to wire racks to cool completely. 

I used vanilla royal icing and added red and green food coloring, with the addition of edible silver balls to add some sparkle, but go wild and don’t be limited to how you can decorate your biscuits! 

   
  

   

Have the best festive season! 

Bananarama! 

Bananarama! 

There’s no real write up about this recipe. I had ripe bananas in the fruit bowl that I needed to use…I’m also a firm believer in the power of chia seeds, and I love walnuts…presto, a recipe was born. 

  
Banana loaf, for me, makes me reminisce about moments spent, on a Sunday, in my grandmothers kitchen, where she made the most amazing banana loaf and muffins, adding dates, Brandy and obviously loads of love, to her recipes. They were moist, delicious and lathered in butter, it was moments of pure bliss. Alas, I was never able to get the recipe out of her, and I try my best to recreate it every now and again. (Failing, but still resulting with yummy bakes) 

   
    
    
 

Banana, Chia and Walnut Loaf

  • Servings: 1 large loaf
  • Print
 

Ingredients 

1 1/2 cups of flour (GF or ordinary) 

2 tsps of baking powder 

1/4 tsp of salt 

1 large egg 

2 TBSPS of soft butter 

1/2 cup of brown sugar 

1/3 cup of chia 

1/2 cup of walnuts 

3 large bananas 

1/2 cup of milk or almond milk 

1 TBSP of cinnamon

Method  

  • Set your oven to 180C and grease a large loaf tin 
  • In a mixing bowl, add the egg, butter, sugar, milk, nuts and 2 bananas. With a paddle attachment, mix these together on a medium speed. 
  • In a seperate bowl, mix you flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and chia. 
  • Once your wet mix is done, start adding the flour mix bit by bit. Keep adding until all the flour mix is done, and give it a quick blast on high, just to make sure all the mixture is properly incorporated. 
  • Place into your greased loaf tin, and top with the remaining banana, cut in half. 
  • Bake for 45-60 minutes, depending on your oven speed. 
  • I drizzled warmed honey on the top of the loaf as soon as I take it out of the oven. 


 

RMB WineX 

RMB WineX 

  
It’s that time of year again, so don’t forget to get your tickets for the most anticipated wine show in South Africa. 

Starting on Wednesday 28th and running until Friday 30th October at the Sandton Convention Centre, it is THE wine show to attend! It’s reached its 16th year, and it promises to have the greatest selection of wines under one roof!! Get ready to know the difference between your Merlot and Cabernet while mingling with winemakers and the Jozi elite.

  

Things to look forward to this year include, broadening your knowledge with the Art of Wine, while viewing the displays of various artists, and performances from the Johannesburg Youth Orchestra. 

From Allée Bleue to Zonnebloem, winemakers will present wines selected for the discerning Gauteng audience. To enhance the wine experience, guests should attend one of the Table Talk Pop-Up roundtable tastings with winemakers! 

 
You won’t go hungry with the array of wine-friendly food products on show – olives, imported cheeses, Wagyu beef, nougat and chocolates and the Mastrantonio Piazza will provide a sit-down menu and ‘food on the move’ deli items.  

In support of the Eco Mobility Festival hosted by the City of Johannesburg in Sandton during October, plan ahead to get there via the number of transport options on offer as alternatives to parking in the neighbouring parkades. 

Who, what, how, when? 

Venue: The Pavilion, Sandton Convention Centre, Maude Street, Sandton

Time: 17h00 to 21h00 each night

Bookings: Book all tickets and packages online via http://www.computicket.com or call 0861 915 8000. Use the “Print at home” facility for easy access to tickets.

Tickets: Via Computicket and at door. 

Getting there and home – watch the press for updates or visit WineX closer to the time for all the options:
· Catch the Gautrain and walk to the Sandton Convention Centre

· Park and Ride sites

· Public transport

· Uber: partnered with WineX as Everybody’s Private Driver to transport wine lovers safely and in style via registration with the smart phone app. 

   
 

The Sanlam Handmade Contemporary Fair

The Sanlam Handmade Contemporary Fair

It’s that time of year again, the Johannesburg days are warmer, the nights are beautiful, and I feel that rooftop markets should become a regular affair. In steps the Sanlam HMC, albeit for only a weekend, is really a wonderful break from having to mission to City center to get the taste of a market. Set on top of the Hyde Park Corner shopping center, its hard to imagine that you are actually walking in what is effectively a parking area. 

This year, they made more use of the space and completely transformed the concrete slab into a beautiful area, filled with the country’s top designers, chefs, restaurants, wine farms and all things unique showcasing their gorgeous products, amazing wine and mouthwatering foods.

  

It’s now in its 5th year, and is really a first of its kind, as its aimed at being a boutique outdoor Fair, featuring the “best of local” – which ranges from Ice Creams, to Craft Beer, freshly pressed juices, and delicious hamburgers.

If you are lucky enough to gain entry to the Sanlam VIP area, you will sample wines from Black Elephant, that are based in Franschoek Valley, and gorgeous cheeses, charcuterie and also, the amazing team of chefs, which cover the “Chef’s of the City” installment, creating gorgeous canapes and snacks.

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A few of my favorite finds this year

Paul’s Homemade Ice Cream (The nicest human that makes Ice cream)

Dear Rae Jewellery

Oneiric Wines (Their Merlot is PHENOMENAL)

The Block Shop

Alexander’s Band

Ballo

The Counter (Because Meg and Ian)

And that’s just naming a few. There are over 100 Exhibitors and a range of products to choose from!

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Making life easier. 

Making life easier. 

I’ve heard it all before. “I don’t have time!” “I’m not a chef…” “It’s just too much effort”. Guys, let’s move on shall we. 

The Pantry Box has come to your rescue. A fool proof, “anyone can make this happen” service. With their amazing recipes, you get to be adventurous in the kitchen and bring out your “Gordon Ramsay” without breaking too much of a sweat, or throwing a pan.  

  

Each Monday, the guys over at Pantry Box, make sure that your order is delivered straight to your door. It’s easy enough, and takes your under ten minutes to figure out your choices which gives your four meals, the recipes for those meals, ALL the ingredients, that are all numbered to correspond with the recipe, also, they are all pre-packed, pre-weighed, separately sorted (are you getting the point?) making it SUPER EASY for you. (No more complaining!!)

   
 
The quality of the ingredients in the box, are awesome! The vegetables are fresh, and stay fresh, the meat and chicken are all vacuumed packed and keep well for the week in the fridge. 

  
The delivery happens in a box that is kept cool and the entire process can not be easier (see how many “easy” terms I’ve used) 

The meals are packed with flavour, the recipes are easy to follow and they have an amazing selection on their website. 

What I love most, is that the recipes are sooooooooo different and are going to give you that little inspiration that’s needed to fall inlove with the food you are cooking and eating! 

  
It will work well for couples or a family, and everyone can have an opportunity to cook a meal (albeit that they are not under 13 and in diapers), the boxes feed up to 6 people. 

Also, as a side note, the have amazing themed “Dinner Party” boxes which serve up to 12 people…EASY!!!!!!!!! 

Availabile in Jozi for now, it’s sure to become a hit! 

❤️🍴

A bunch of corndogs 

A bunch of corndogs 

So when last did I post a recipe guys?! It’s been ages! So the quickest corndog batter…if you are not familiar with corndogs, you must be living under a rock. (Love you under your rock though) 

 

Corndogs are an America fun fair staple, call them a classic if you must! Easy food, served on a stick, so it’s portable, and it’s bursting with flavor! 

This can be a quick Friday night dinner with a bunch of friends, or even an after school lunch for the kiddies. 

Corndogs

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups of Semolina 
1 1/4 cups of plain white flour 

1 TBSP of baking powder 

1/4 tsp of salt 

1 egg, beaten 

1 1/2 cups of buttermilk 

1/2 cup of plain milk 

1 TBSP of oil 

1 TBSP of honey 

10 Hot dog sausages 

10 skewer sticks 

Vegetable oil for frying (about 2L) 

Method 

Heat your oil to 180C 

In two bowl, mix your dry ingredients in one, and your wet ingredients into another. 

Add the wet to the dry and mix well. 

You will have a thick, almost cake batter like dough. 

Pour your mix into a jug, the process here is to have a jug that’s slightly bigger that your sausages, so that it’s easier to dip once they are skewered. 

Skewer your hot dogs. 

Make sure your oil is heated, and start by dipping the first skewer. Take care to get all of the sausage covered with batter. 

Slowly place each skewer into the oil, and gently bob them so that you work then around, so that the batter fries evenly and doesn’t blister! (I really hope this makes sense) 

Fry until deeply golden! 

Serve with tomato sauce and mustard!!!!! 

   
    
   
❤️🍴


Glamorous Foodie Nights Out

Glamorous Foodie Nights Out

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Let’s observe this photo. OK. Done? This is the beautiful Charmaine Mampe Ramalope aka The Glam Foodie. I have the biggest girl crush on her, also, this blog post is probably going to be such a gushing session, so please just excuse me. There is nothing more attractive, than a woman that is completely “put together”. Flawlessly gorgeous, exuding confidence, but remaining humble, and just an all round sweet heart. Yes, she is that glam! 

I attended her first #GlamFoodie Wine and Dine evening about two weeks ago, at Aarya Restaurant in Johannesburg. Aarya is Chef Deena Naidoos baby (MasterChef SA Season 1 Winner) , which is situated in the heart of the bustling Monte Casino, and part of the Tsogo Sun Group. Glen Carlou Wines, also played a part in the evening and we were all given a slight education on the farm from the wine maker, Arco.23

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The menu of five courses, was paired with varieties of blends from Glen Carlou, and each perfectly balanced with the delicious food that came out of the kitchen. We started the evening with a trio of canapes, paired with the Unwooded Chardonnay, with its crisp fruit intensity, it was a pleasant surprise. Our starter was Scallops with a creamed risotto, drizzled with a thick prawn bisque (I need the prawn bisque in my life all the time), which went down well with the Classic Chardonnay. The next two courses of Quail and Lamb Rack, paired well with the Merlot and Gravel Quarry Cabernet (The Cabernet is PHENOMENAL) The food was delicious, the Quail, served on a Wild Mushroom Parcel was heavenly, and the Lamb Racks Shank and Spinach Thimble, was filled with flavor and was mouthwatering.

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Moving onto dessert, which was paired, as you might of guessed with a dessert wine. I generally don’t do dessert wines, I find them to be overtly sweet and, for me, they some how take away from the tastes of the dish. To my surprise, The Welder Natural Sweet Chenin Blanc, was deliciously smooth on the tongue, and not grossly sweet, served with A Creme Brulee, Panna Cotta and Creamed Lemon Curd.

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We walked away from the evening, full of amazing food, good wines, a little more knowledge about Glen Carlou, and a new appreciation for Deena and his team. I really do take my hat off to him. I know how hard it is to run a kitchen, and how easy it is to mess it all up, but his passion and intensity for what he does, shines through and is wonderfully translated to his food and the amazing buzz in his kitchen.

Charmaine is the perfect hostess, constantly around and filtering herself to all the tables. You can see that these Wine and Dine evenings, are going to be supported and will grown as the word spreads.

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Follow The Glam Foodie SA on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to keep up to date with the next Wine and Dine evenings, that will be happening in and around Johannesburg.

Be sure to book and secure your seat, as these are bound to be amazing.

Photos used with permission of The Glam Foodie SA

Photos taken by Collin Makhubela

Eat. Sleep. Repeat. 

Eat. Sleep. Repeat. 

  

What happens when you gather a group of people passionate about food, put them at one table, and give them welcome drinks of Patron and 4 wines to taste? Absolute fun, laughter and some chaos. Add a sprinkling of good food, live music, and some education on wine, it becomes an evening that can only be memorable. 

   
 

Hello Joburg Magazine and  iL Giardino were the perfect hosts, to another wonderful Hello Recommends dinner. 

A fun filled evening, with some new faces at the table and some very familiar, we shared gorgeous wines, lovely food, and conversation. Exchanging ideas, jokes and our most recent “foodie” stories. 

  
iL Giardino, located at 44 Stanley, Milpark, is a little gem, tucked between the hustle and bustle of Johnnesburgs concrete jungle, dripping with character and beautifully decked out, with wooden tables, fresh flowers and wrought iron finishes. You feel like you are sitting in an square in Italy. The Room, which is just off the courtyard, is a function venue that caters more to your private parties or those moments when the Spring skies open up and decide to storm. 

All in all, the venue is beautiful and the food is hearty, filled with flavour and fresh. They also boasts their own range of olive oils, which are delicious and add a punch to any salad or pasta. 

The wine tastings are going to be hosted every month, so be sure to follow them on Facebook and Twitter to be updated with these events. 

   
    
 
   
 
If you are in Johannesburg, and you haven’t downloaded the Go Hello App, what are you actually waiting for?? It’s FILLED with information and oozing with all the things you need to get through your day. 

Also, because they always bring the laughter, these two. 

  
Steven (The Joburg Foodie) and Jade (Jade

❤️🍴

 

Ok, cauliflower. Ok. 

Ok, cauliflower. Ok. 


Has anyone taken note of how versatile the cauliflower is? I have. I’m also sure that due to the Banting craze, most foodies, chefs and home cooks have started using this very underrated vegetable. 

So the basic principles of gnocchi apply here, what I tasted was nothing that would scare you away from making it, and due to the flour and egg additions, the cauliflower almost looses its flavour completely – which is a good thing for people (kids…or some grownups) that tend to not be vegetable eaters.

I also urge you to actually make a batch of either the sweet potato gnocchi or this recipe, as once you’ve mastered the technique, it’s the easiet side to any meal…or even just on its own, and it’s not as complicated as you might think.

Gnocchi is also famously brilliant sautéed in butter with fresh sage leaves, so the frills of trying to figure out a sauce or anything to go with it, is not something that needs to be overly thought of!

It’s simple food, that when made correctly, is amazing. That’s why I love it.

Cauliflower Gnocchi

  • Servings: 4 Big portions
  • Print

  • 550g of cauliflower (about 1 big head), processed finely in a food processor.
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 1/2 – 2 cups of gluten free flour and extra for kneading
  • 1/2 tsp of salt
  • 2 tsp of baking powder
  1. In a microwaveable dish, heat the cauliflower for 3 minutes on high. In a clean dish towel, squeeze out the excess moisture, with a tongs (see picture below)
  2. Add the eggs to a large bowl, with the cauliflower, 1 1/2 cups of gluten free flour, salt and baking powder.
  3. Mix until the dough comes together, add more flour as needed – until you can form a ball.
  4. Transfer to a floured surface and knead, dusting with flour when needed, leave to rest for about 1o minutes.
  5. Prepare a pot of water with salt and olive oil, place this on a high heat and bring it up to the boil.
  6. Now divide your dough into about 12 equal pieces, roll out each piece to start cutting you gnocchi.
  7. Start cutting your gnocchi pieces and get a helper to fork them for you. The indentations help keep them pretty, but also lap up flavors and sauces.
  8. Once you have all your gnocchi cut and prepared, drop the gnocchi into the boiling water (in batches) and once they start bobbing to the surface, transfers them to an oiled oven tray, or directly to your sauce.


  

The above plate is a basic Neapolitan sauce, with peas, Parmesan and fresh pea shots.

This plate is portabellini mushrooms, black truffle oil, peas and broccoli.

❤️🍴

Cinnamon Goodness

Cinnamon Goodness

Not the healthiest recipe that I’ve posted, but it sure is delicious and filled with loads of cinnamon yumminess! 

Also, Joe asked if we can make them, he has me wrapped around his little finger, so I was game! New recipe, my best recipe tester/helper…how could I say no?! 

  
Cinnamon rolls, are fairly easy to make and if you have bread making knowledge, you could probably do it with your eyes closed! These are very basic and this recipe is a simple one. You can add raisins, chocolate chips, or even dried fruits to give it extra dazzle, but I’ve kept these filled with cinnamon, sugar and butter! 

   
    
    
 

Cinnamon Rolls

  • Servings: 10-12 rolls
  • Print

  • 1 packet of instant yeast (10g) 
  • 1 cup of milk 
  • 1/2 cup of butter (halved) 
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt 
  • 3 cups of flour 
  • 2 TBSP of cinnamon 
  • 1/4 cups of sugar + 1 TBSP (divided) 

Method 

  1. Set your oven to 180C 
  2. In a sauce pan, add your milk and the first butter half. Bring to heat until the butter has just melted. Do not boil the milk. Remove from heat and transfer to a bug mixing bowl. 
  3. Once the milk and butter mix is tepid, sprinkle your yeast over the liquid and give it a stir, leave to stand for 10 minutes, this helps activate the yeast. 
  4. Now add the 1 TBSP of sugar and salt. Give this a quick stir. Next add 1/2 cup of flour at a time, keep incorporating the flour, until you get a rough ball of dough. 
  5. On a clean surface, knead your dough for about 10 minutes (give it loads of love) Transfer the dough into a lightly oiled bowl and over with cling. Leave to rest for at least 1 hour or until I doubles in size. 
  6. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough, into a thin rectangle and brush with the remaining butter and sprinkle with loads of cinnamon sugar.  
  7. Roll it up, baby! 
  8. Cut into 10 equal pieces and place them into a grease baking dish, leaving space in between them for the second rise. Cover in cling and leave to prove for 15 minutes. 
  9. Brush with any remaining butter and bake for 20-25 minutes until slightly golden. 
  10. EAT 

  
Side note : I made a very quick sour cream frosting, well not so much a frosting, more like a sweetened sour cream. 

1 cup sour cream : icing sugar to taste 

This helps keep it slightly healthier! 

❤️🍴