Back in high school I had a friend named Thando, we used to spend a lot of time playing and studying at her place because they had a pool and a stunning patio. When cooking chicken they would always reserve the breasts for the dog. They said they were dry and didn’t like them because of that. I used to volunteer cooking the breasts for the dog and would spice them up then dish up a portion for myself. Fast-forward to the future…
While researching traditional dishes from the various cultures in our country I realise there’s a Sotho dish called Tshohlo. Chicken breasts are cooked until they fall off the bone or shredded with a fork. After preparing the dish I immediately thought of Thando’s family and wished they knew of Tshohlo back then. With a bit of creativity, Tshohlo can be colourful, flavoursome and not to mention a great source of protein.
On the other hand, mangos are in season at the moment and during my travels in the Gauteng, Mpumalanga and Limpopo regions I witnessed how widely used Atchar is. Some people take advantage of seasonal availability and make mango atchar at home. Mango atchar or any other type of atchar, adds interesting flavours to dishes and it is mostly served as an accompaniment to a meat dish served with pap, in Kotas etc. When working on this recipe I wanted to capture that essence and the importance of Atchar in South African cuisine and mix it with Tshohlo to result in beautiful mini quiches that match the flavours of the wine. The dish is bursting with flavours from the leeks, atchar, pepper and adding milk and eggs adds creaminess which rounds up the flavours beautifully. Roasted pumpkin seeds add a bit of crunch to the dish.
Foundation Rose is a stunning wine, it’s refreshingly fruity with tastes of berry. It is a wine perfect for a relaxed mood and good times. I wanted a dish that matches those attributes.
The recipe is very easy to prepare and perfect for a Summer day and for those not wanting to spend too much time in the kitchen. Surprise your loved one this Valentine’s Day! They would love it! Enjoy!
Tshohlo and Mango Atchar Mini Quiches with Pumpkin Seeds, paired with Nederburg Foundation Rosé
Serves: 12 to 18
4 chicken breasts
125ml (½ cup) boiling water
2 bay leaves
1 chicken stock cube
15ml (1 Tbsp) canola or olive oil
1 big leek with leaves, chopped
½ red pepper, chopped
1 clove of garlic, chopped
3 tomatoes, peeled and diced
250ml (1 cup) mango atchar
15ml (1 Tbsp) fresh thyme or 5ml (1tsp) dried thyme
2.5ml (½ tsp) freshly milled black pepper, to taste
Salt, to taste (optional)
800g puff pastry
Flour for dusting
250ml (1 cup) full cream milk
For final assembly
30ml (2 Tbsp) dried pumpkin seeds
For more info and wine pairing suggestions, visit www.nederburg.co.za
Follow Nederburg on Facebook (www.facebook.com/nederburg
— Nederburg Wines (@Nederburg) February 2, 2015
Join the conversation using the hashtagh: #NederburgDiscover
Have you been checking out the recipes on the Whatsfordinner facebook page? Two other bloggers, Nina Timm and Alida Ryder have also created delicious recipes using the Knorr Crispy & Tasty Coatings.
Working on this project made me realize some things. For the most part of my career in food I have worked on products, developing the actual product which in this case would be Knorr Crispy & Tasty Coatings. That included putting together product information which will be on the packet as well as the one used in the factory during the manufacturing process. Now, as a blogger I get to use the product to create a recipe as well as interact directly with the consumers, simplify their life in the kitchen which is great!
What does the Food Technologist in me think of Knorr Crispy & Tasty? It is one of those products one must always have in the cupboard. It makes for easy meal preparation and one can always assemble something quickly using the product. What makes it different from other coatings in the market? It yields a soft crumb plus I love that it comes with a Dip Mix, one can get creative with the dip mixes by adding a bit of this and a dash of that.
This is my third recipe and I went for chicken livers. South Africans love them! They are reasonably priced, preparation doesn’t take too much time, they are delicious and versatile depending on one’s creativity. One of the trends in food right now is light meals, meals that provide one with the required nutrients as well as energy. I’m talking about meals that won’t leave you feeling like sleeping afterwards.
The secret for this dish is not to overcook the livers otherwise the dish will be dry. However, the Sweet Chilli Dip will help keep it moist as well as contribute to the flavour of the dish. Lather it as desired! Enjoy!
Crumbed Chicken Fillets with a Spicy Liver Stuffing and a Sweet Chilli Dip
5 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1 packet Knorr Crispy & Tasty Chicken Coating with Sweet Chilli Dip-Mix
125ml (½ cup) milk
For the dip:
75ml (5 Tbsp) plain yoghurt
15ml (1 Tbsp) lite mayonnaise
For the stuffing:
30ml (2 Tbsp) olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
5ml (1 tsp) crushed fresh garlic
2.5ml (½ tsp) medium curry powder
2.5ml (½ tsp) mixed dried herbs
2.5ml (½ tsp) mustard powder
2.5ml (½ tsp) peri-peri sauce
5ml (1 tsp) Worcestershire sauce
5ml (1 tsp) soy sauce
500g chicken livers, rinsed and cut into small pieces
45ml (3 Tbsp) tomato paste
15ml (1 Tbsp) chutney
salt and freshly ground black pepper
Well, the weather is lovely and sunny in most parts of the country. Great weather calls for delectable summer dishes with good wine…
That sound appealing doesn’t it? Now, imagine the thought of having to enjoy some of the wine while cooking.
Every cook worth her salt will tell you never to cook with wine you wouldn’t want to drink. If it’s good for you, it’s good for the pot.
If you can lay your hands on the 2013 Zonnebloem Sauvignon Blanc, you couldn’t do better than to pour a glass for yourself and keep another for your favourite recipe. It will wake up your mouth with a lively rush of fresh, green and beautifully balanced flavours and add depth to your dish.
Cellarmaster Deon Boshoff says the wine has settled into a satiny smoothness and that with a component of bush vines in the blend, it has a very pleasing palate weight. “Just enough body and length for a lovely, lingering enjoyment.”
Sounds easy but did you know that it has been created from as many as 70 individually made wines, sourced from vineyards in Darling, Stellenbosch, not to mention Elgin, Lutzville, Overberg and even Malmesbury, to achieve just the right balance.
Pour a glass and toast the summer with this simple but sensational chicken dish. It is calorie-friendly too! Enjoy!
Roast Chicken Salad with Soy and Sesame Dressing
1,5kg whole chicken
1 lemon, halved
2,5cm knob of fresh ginger grated or cut into match sticks
1/4 cup of white sesame seeds
1 head of cos or butter lettuce or pillow of mixed lettuce leaves
1 firm but ripe avocado
1 bunch of spring onions chopped
1/2 cup of sugar snap beans
1 cup of baby tomatoes
Few sprigs fresh coriander (optional)
60ml Zonnebloem Sauvignon Blanc
3 Tbs sesame oil
3 Tbs soy sauce
grated rind and juice of half a lemon
If you find you need more dressing, just make another batch and keep what you don’t need in this recipe, for your next salad.
Visit the website: www.zonnebloem.co.za
Join the Twitter conversation using: #ZonnebloemCraft
If you are not in Cape Town, let me tell you this….it is COLD! It is raining! My mind is going crazy thinking of Stews, Curries, Potjies, Casseroles, Soups, Hot Chocolate….I’m thinking of a Sticky Toffee Pudding with generous splashes of Custard….Ooolalaaa!
I go to my Instagram, Facebook and Twitter timelines and take comfort in seeing that I am not the only one having these thoughts. My fellow Capetonians are busy indulging in Hearty Soups, Stews with Dumplings, Hot Chocolate, Hot Sponge Puddings, Rusks….I’m dunking my rusk as I write this post. Sisonke!
However, as much as we would all like to prepare fancy and mouth-watering meals for our families, not everyone is lucky enough to afford items like Stewing Lamb or Beef, Ostrich, Kudu etc. The price of food, electricity and other living expenses are forever escalating with no signs of decreasing any time sooner. This does not mean we can’t all enjoy good food. At one point in my life, things were really tough financially but I came out of that situation mastering the art of creating plate scraping and seconds-worthy meals using very few ingredients. It’s all about making the best of what you have. No need to go rob the bank or get a sugar daddy to sponsor you.
South Africans love their meat…My mom will tell you, ifunwa ngumzimba meaning that it’s the body that wants it. If that is you then stock up on grocery items like Chicken Livers, Chicken Giblets, Tripe, Lungs, Chicken Necks, Trotters, Cow Heels, Pilchards etc. These items are all affordable for meat lovers. One can create master pieces using these ingredients just by adding a dash of this and a bit of that…..Just to give you an example, I’ve prepared this very simple recipe below. Chicken Necks are the cheapest items one can ever find yet they are tasty and can be used to create finger licking stews.
Hope yo get to try out the recipe. Please also let us know how you prepare your Chicken Necks. Enjoy and keep warm!
Pot Roast Chicken Neck Stew with Red Wine
3x 400g packets chicken necks
1 small onion
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
5ml medium curry powder
1 small red pepper
1 chicken stock cube
125ml dry red wine (I used a Merlot)
salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
A couple of weeks ago, I spent an evening learning to cook Cape Malay at the Eleven Kitchen Cooking Venue in Woodstock. Who else can teach Cape Malay cooking better than Cass Abrahams?
I got to prepare Creamy Chicken Curry with Roti and that’s not all, I’ve also shared another recipe in today’s issue of the Cape Times, check out the Mzansi Cuisine column in the Top of the Times section. Get a copy and read about my experience attending Cass’ cooking class.
Our country is so rich in culture, history and diversity. I always preach spending more time with the older generation, listening and learning from their experiences. There’s so much that a person can learn from someone who has had a colourful career in cooking and food, locally and internationally. Cass shares her expertise, experience and knowledge at her cooking classes.
One thing, I’ve learnt in my experience in cooking is that, different people can have the same recipe but chances are high that the outcome might be different. Therefore, it is imperative to take advantage of the available opportunities to learn from the legends. I prepared this recipe once again at home and for some reason it was even better than the last time. I think it is because it was my second time preparing it (therefore I had more confidence).
One can learn to cook by following recipes on a magazine, cookbook, blog etc. but nothing comes closer to attending an interactive cooking class.
I would love to hear your opionion, what do you think of cooking classes? Do you ever attend them?
For more info, check out the Eleven Kitchen Cooking Venue Facebook Page
Creamy Chicken Curry with Roti by Cass Abrahams
5 filleted chicken breasts, cut into strips
5ml (1tsp) masala
Salt to taste
2 onions, sliced
10ml (2tsp) Robertsons cumin seeds
10ml (2tsp) Robertsons fennel seeds
1 Robertsons turmeric
10ml (2tsp) garlic and ginger paste
Salt to taste
125 ml (½cup) Bulgarian yoghurt
½ bunch fresh coriander, chopped
For Basmati Rice
1 cup basmati rice soaked in cold water for 5 minutes plus 1 cassia stick and 2 cardamom pods. Cook until done.
Place the hot cooked rice in a medium teacup and press down firmly. Invert on to a plate to form a timbale.
I just want to share one of those random recipes you just put together without even thinking and they turn out amazing! I’m sure you also have one of those……
It was raining in Cape Town yesterday wasn’t it? It was just one of those days…I felt like having something stewy, spicy, quick and easy to prepare just to take care of the cold. Come to think of it I wasn’t even hungry but I was in the mood to cook.
In my freezer, I had these chicken hearts I bought for the Expresso live shoot which never took place due to my accident two months ago. The poor hearts have been sitting there begging to be utilised. It was either that, pork chops or chicken. Yup! I love my meat, besides I have an excuse now…..I need that layer of extra fat to keep me warm.
Anyways, I opted for the chicken hearts. I remembered the Inna Paarman’s Tikka Curry that I bought at the Good Food and Wine Show. Luckily, I have tons Stock Pot…..and for the veggie part I had dried morogo which I bought from a street vendor in Joburg.
I love dried Morogo. I love the concept behind it. Personally, I think its clever and if as consumers we generate a lot of demand some farmer/retailer out there would feel compeled to supply it. Just think about this….wouldn’t it be interesting to buy dried morogo from retail stores all over the country? They are doing it in Botswana. So come on people of Mzansi, let us demand to see our indigenous ingredients at retail stores and its only you and I who could make that demand. We’ve got the buying power! Let’s take advantage of that fact. Farmers, manufacturers and retailers work according to our demand. If we don’t demand they don’t supply. That’s just the nature of the business.
Now back to my dish….. a couple of years ago I got a small packet of dried morogo from a friend in Joburg. She grows some mogoro in her backyard and dries it herself. I remember she warned me not to use too much at once as it doubles in size once cooked. I didn’t heed the warning, I cooked the whole packet at once and it was a disaster. This time around I wanted to just add a bit.
So I made a stew with the chicken hearts, added the dried morogo and made dumplings with bran-rich self-raising flour. The meal took about 15 or 20 minutes to prepare. By the time I was done cooking I was I didn’t feel like eating. I just dished up to taste then packed in a container for my colleagues (my guinea pigs). My meal disappeared as usual. It turned out really good. This one dude from Zimbabwe almost proposed marriage. Hehehe! On a serious note, he went on and on about how good the food was and how rare it is to find a woman that cooks good traditional food. He tells me the Shona people call it Mufushwa.
That was my dinner last night. You owe it to yourself to try out this recipe, therefore, go buy yourself some dried morogo and let me know how it turns out! Enjoy!
Tikka Curry Chicken Gizzards/Hearts/Necks with Morogo and Dumplings Recipe
Serves: 3 – 4
500g chicken hearts, gizzards, cubed chicken breasts
1 red onion, chopped
1 chicken stock pot
1 garlic clove, chopped
4 fresh basil, chopped
A handful of dried morogo
Bran-rich self-raising flour
1 packet (200g) Ina Paarman’s Tikka Curry
30ml (2 Tbsp) tomato paste
Freshly ground black pepper
I have to give props when they are due, the first time I prepared this recipe was one of those days you get back from work and don’t feel like cooking but you are hungry and you’ve got to eat….
For me chicken is one of the easiest items to prepare. I had (still have) a cupboard full of Rhodes canned items which I got as one of the prizes from Dinner Divas. So, I thought, chicken + opening a can = Brilliant Idea! I placed the chicken on a baking dish without adding any seasoning to it, I poured a can of Rhodes Mexican Style Tomato, Onions & Green Pepper relish over the chicken and cooked it in the oven. The end results were seriously amazing.
However, the foodie in me also likes preparing recipes from scratch hence the recipe below, but hey if you feel like a quick meal do not feel like chopping feel free to just open a can.
Now to the interesting part, I prepared this recipe in front of a group of people and a camera for the first time. The aim was to give them an idea of how I really come up with my recipes. Personally, I believe that the best recipes are the ones that are prepared by just having an idea of what you would like to prepare, going into the kitchen, following your gut and letting your senses guide you by tasting your food and adjusting the flavours, colours and textures accordingly. That’s how I came up with this recipe and they got to witness the raw deal. Initially, there was no green in the recipe and the sight of a red and yellow chakalaka wasn’t doing the trick. Luckily, I had mange touts in the fridge and threw in a cup. I like what the role played by mange touts on the appearance. Talk about a sexy looking chakalaka!
While the chicken was cooking in the oven I prepared an Amadumbe Mash (with an interesting twist) and served it with the chicken. I’ll be sharing the Amadumbe Mash recipe tomorrow. We washed the meal down with a good bottle of Chardonnay. Hope you get to try it. Happy Workers’ Day!
±1kg chicken (preferably thighs), skin removed
15ml (1Tbsp) olive /canola oil
1 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 yellow/red pepper, cut into strips
2 carrots, cut julienne
250ml (1cup) mange toute
7.5ml (½ Tbsp) rosemary, chopped
30ml (2Tbsp) chutney (any chutney will do, I’ve tried hot, tomato and chilli chutneys)
15ml (1Tbsp) medium curry powder
15ml (1Tbsp) red wine vinegar
2.5ml (½tsp) salt
2.5ml (½tsp) freshly ground black pepper
Early this morning as I was on my way to the Expresso show studios to present this recipe then BOOM! Out of nowhere, another car comes to my lane hitting my car on the passenger side.
Anyways, I didn’t get to the studio as we had to wait for the traffic officers and take statements…..
Back to the dish….
Today is International Carrot Day and I was asked to prepare a recipe using carrots. I came up with the stir fry recipe below. Carrots are a good source of the antioxidants, good for your eyesight, vitamin c, folic acid and many more….
Personally, I love snacking on baby carrots. Those packets of ready to eat baby carrots were made for me. If they are used in a recipe, I do not want them to lose that crunch.
The recipe I’m presenting uses chicken hearts. For some reason people struggle to get them. I’ve received a handful of emails asking where to get them. Even the guys at Expresso could not get them (I’m told they went to three different stores) therefore I had to go buy them myself. The one place that sells chicken hearts in Cape Town is the Gugulethu Spar. I travel to Gugs whenever I’m looking for items such as chicken hearts, tripe (the green one) or chicken feet. Otherwise, one can always replace them with giblets or chicken livers.
One can also play around with the recipe and add different flavourings as the recipe is quite spicy. I’ve added sour milk, chutney and chicken stock powder to tone down the spiciness and round up the flavours. Flour and water are added to thicken it up.
The dish is perfect for the chilly autumn and winter weather. Last but not least, I’ve paired the dish with Vergelegen Shiraz 2010. Any other good Shiraz will do, it perfectly washes down all that spiciness.
How do you prefer your carrots? Do you like them cooked or raw?
Chicken Hearts, Carrots and Mushroom Stir-Fry
15ml (1T) oil
500g chicken hearts, cut into strips/halves or whole
80ml boiling water
5ml (1tsp) chicken stock
15ml (1T) oil
1 onion, sliced
3 cloves garlic, sliced
5ml (1T) fresh ginger, finely chopped
2 chillies, chopped
10ml (2tsp) curry powder
1 green pepper, cut into strips
3-4 carrots, cut julienne
250ml (1cup) button mushrooms, sliced
3 tomatoes, peeled and chopped
30ml (2T) tomato paste
5 sprigs thyme, chopped
Salt and pepper
30ml (2T) chilli / tomato chutney
5ml chicken stock powder
80ml sour milk
15ml (1T) flour
30ml (2T) cold water
Every household has their designated cook, that person who prepares the most divine dishes. Be it one dish that they specialise in or several other dishes.
One of my sisters used to cook Umphokoqo better than anyone. Whenever the family was in the mood for umphokoqo we would ask her to prepare it. Kicking and screaming, she would drag herself to the kitchen as the entire household relied on her……
One of my friends was bragging about this scrumptious chicken curry recipe her boyfriend, Carlo, cooked for her. He takes pride in preparing his dishes and it tasted so good I had to ask her to get the boyfriend to share the recipe. Apparently this curry recipe is one of his speciality dishes.
Since winter is not ready to leave us yet, I cooked the recipe at home and its has been so good I’m sure I’m gonna make it up again soon. Compliments to the cook!
Carlo’s Chicken Masala Curry Recipe
8 chicken pieces
30ml (2 Tbsp) olive oil
4 bay leaves
1 large onion, chopped
2 heaped teaspoons jeera powder
3 Tsp chicken masala
3 tsp hot curry powder
1 ½ tsp mild curry powder
15ml (1 Tbsp) turmeric powder
15ml (1 Tbsp) fresh garlic, chopped
250ml (1cup) boiling water
6 potatoes cut into even squares
250ml (1cup) mixed vegetables
2 heaped tsp pepper
1 heaped tsp salt (season to preferred taste)
1. Sauté onions and garlic in olive oil till golden brown.
2. Add bay leaves, half teaspoon jeera powder, half teaspoon chicken masala and half teaspoon hot curry powder.
3. Add your chicken pieces and cook for 10 minutes.
4. Add the rest of the spices to the pot and water to cook spices evenly through chicken.
5. Cook till chicken is well done.
6. Add potatoes to the pot and cook till half done
7. Add mixed vegetables and cook till well done or to preferred texture.
Can’t believe it’s already February! It’s red and white everywhere! Aaaah! What can we say it’s the month of LOVE!
A lot of single people get depressed during this month especially at the sight of all the Valentines gifts at retail stores. Well, in my book love is not just about romantic love, it can be love between a child and a parent, friends, siblings etc. So, to all my singlet’s out there…please chin-up and show some love yourself and then those around you. Invite friends over and I’ve got this perfect dish that won’t break your bank account.
Ever see chicken hearts at your retail store and never know how to cook them? I bought a 500g packet for eight odd rands, that’s reasonable. Now I had the task of making them divine to the point that one would want to buy/cook/eat them again.
At home I went through the contents of my cupboard and thought of making a pie. Besides I had my Le Creuset mini round cocotte from that came with the invitation to the Bovril Black Tie Dinner and I’ve really wanted to use it in one of my pictures (You can’t blame me it’s so cute). So, making the Chicken Hearts & Vegetable Pie seemed like a perfect idea. By the way, this dish got two thumbs up from my friends, I hope you get to try it and give me your opinions. Happy Cooking!
Chicken Hearts and Vegetable Pie Recipe
15ml (1Tbsp) olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
± 500g chicken hearts
2 medium carrots, sliced
1 sweet corn cob, kernels removed
1 green pepper, chopped
1 chilli, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
5 sprigs fresh parsley, chopped
5ml medium curry powder
5ml (1tsp) salt
45ml (3Tbsp) sour milk
5ml red wine vinegar
15ml (1Tbsp) cornstarch or flour
45ml (3Tbsp) tomato paste
Pinch of sugar
For the Sour Cream & Black Pepper Mash Potatoes:
5-6 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
60ml (4Tbsp) sour milk
salt and black pepper to taste
fresh parsley, chopped, to garnish