Taste of Cape Town 2014

Autumn in Cape Town, possibly my favourite time of year. There is a chill in the air, but it’s still sunny during the day and my cat is extra generous with her purr-filled snuggles. It’s also time for one of my favourite food themed events, Taste of Cape Town.

The event started yesterday evening and runs until Sunday and is once again being held at the Green Point Cricket Club. Tickets cost R80 for a standard ticket (R100 at the door), R180 for a premium ticket (R200 at the door) and R685 for Taste Clubhouse Experience tickets. All tickets include entry to the festival and a wine tasting glass, a premium ticket includes R100 worth of Scoins (the festival currency) and a clubhouse experience ticket includes R150 worth of Scoins plus complimentary bar service in the private clubhouse and a Taste of Cape Town gift.

There are seven participating restaurants this year, plus an additional two pop-up restaurants which will change each day, offering tasting portions of three dishes each. Alongside the restaurants there are various theatres and experience tents where you can participate in a hands on session or watch a dish being prepared. As well as a food market featuring artisan producers, premium drink brands and award-winning wineries.

I attended the festival last night and was lucky enough to receive complimentary entry to the event for myself and Richard (my boyfriend). Our game plan for each year’s event is to share the dishes we buy so we get to taste a wider variety and make our Scoins go a bit further. Here are some of the dishes we tried.

Seared cob with white bean and fennel salad from Il Leone Mastrantonio at @TasteOfCT Fish tacos. Corn tortillas filled with beer-battered kingklip, shredded cabbage & tangerine red onion salsa from Cosecha at @TasteofCT A Blue Dissolve and Vinofusion cocktail at the @Consol_Glass Mixology stand at @TasteofCT
Cured blesbok. Rooibos & citrus cured venison tartare, salt baked beetroot, pickled onion, apple gel, walnut crumble & labneh from Azure at @TasteofCT Burrara cheese, semi-dried tomatoes & basil oil from Burrata at @TasteofCT Herb & macadamia nut-crusted Karoo lamb cutlet with minted jus from Camissa Brasserie at @TasteofCT
Coffee-cocoa ribs. Pork ribs marinated in coffee, cocoa & spices. Chargrilled & served with feta esquites. From Cosecha at @TasteofCT Rainbow cheesecake with mixed berry compote from Camissa Brasserie at @TasteofCT Hibiscus flower ice lolly to end the evening, from @LasPaletasCT at @TasteofCT

Top: Seared cob from Il Leone, fish tacos from Cosecha, Consol Mixology cocktails
Middle: Cured blesbok from Azure, Burrata from Burrata, lamb cutlet from Camissa Brasserie
Bottom: Coffee-cocoa ribs from Cosecha, rainbow cheesecake from Camissa Brasserie, hybiscus flower ice lolly from Las Paletas

Check out my Taste of Cape Town 2013 Instagram roundup to see what we tasted last year.

Cape Town Festival of Beer 2013 – Giveaway

If you live in Cape Town and are a fan of all things beer you will no doubt know that the fourth annual Cape Town Festival of Beer is taking place at Hamilton’s Rugby Club next weekend. I myself attended the festival for the first time last year and enjoyed meeting brewers from all over the country, tasting many new to me brews and even managed to find a few that appealed to my lager averse palate.

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This year there will be over 200 beers to try, as well as guided beer tours and a larger than life beer pong tournament. Apart from all the beer there will also be food stalls, live entertainment and even some wine options for those not to fond of the beer side of things. There will also be a designated kiddies areas with child minders so there is no need to fret if you can’t find a babysitter.

Tickets can be bought via webtickets at R120 (including a beer glass). But for you lucky blog readers, I’ve got two sets of double tickets to giveaway for either the Friday (22 November) or Sunday (24 November) sessions. To enter use the Rafflecopter widget below to leave me a comment telling me which of the beers or other aspect of the show you are most looking forward to. You can also optionally tweet about the giveaway for an extra entry. Entries close at 12:00 next Tuesday (19 November) and I will randomly choose two winners once the giveaway has been closed.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I Made It Challenge – November 2013

I’ve been invited by Tandy over at Lavender and Lime to host the November 2013 instalment of her I Made It Challenge series. With the last three challenges being nougat, cassoulet and mission impossible (!), I knew I wanted to choose something simple yet still impressive. Something I’ve been wanting to try, but just haven’t gotten around to.

I Made It

After thinking about it for awhile it finally came to me. Paneer! A squeaky fresh cheese that I’ve most often encountered in Indian cuisine. I’ve been wanting to try my hand at making this for the longest time, but being the supreme procrastinator that I am, just hadn’t gotten to it yet.

So my challenge to you it to make your own paneer and use it in a dish of your choice. I will probably be following the instructions over on The Kitchn or wikiHow, but you are welcome to follow whichever recipe/instructions you feel most comfortable with.

I Made It Widget

If you choose to participate in this month’s challenge please take note of the following.

  • Everyone who takes part must link back to this post
  • Everyone who takes part must link back to Tandy’s blog
  • Everyone who takes part must display the I Made It Challenge widget (displayed above)
  • You have until the end of the month (30 November 2013) to publish your post and be included in Tandy’s challenge roundup.

I hope you enjoy taking part in the challenge this month and most importantly that you have fun making your own paneer.

14 Days of Zespri – Giveaway Winner

It’s been a week, a few people entered by little Zespri giveaway and now the time has come to announce the winner.

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So without further ado, the winner is…

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Congratulations Jackie, I’ll be in touch soon to organize getting your prize to you.

14 Days of Zespri – Day 14

So it’s the last day of the 14 days of Zespri challenge and as a reward for sticking with me during all the kiwifruit madness I have a little giveaway for you.

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Not only did the awesome people at Zespri supply me with a few a two week supply of kiwis and and pack of kiwifruit accessories, they also gave me an additional pack of items to give away to you.

The hamper consists of the following items:

  • a Zespri branded lunch bag,
  • a Zespri Gold lunchbox with matching spife,
  • a Zespri Green kiwifruit holder with matching spife,
  • a Kiri kiwifruit hand cream,
  • a Kiri kiwifruit lip balm and
  • a Fruit & Veg City voucher to the value of R150 to buy your own two week supply of kiwifruit.

It's the last day of kiwi madness. #14daysofZespriSA #wflkiwi

To enter, use the Rafflecopter widget below to leave me a comment letting me know which of my 14 Days of Zespri posts was your favourite. For extra entries share a photo of you doing something funny with a kiwifruit or tweet about the giveaway. You’ll have a week to enter and I will close entries next Sunday, 29 September 2013 this Friday, 27 September 2013 and announce the winner the following Monday.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Also, don’t forget about the Zespri Cut, Scoop and Enjoy competition. You could win a R1,000 Yuppiechef voucher by sending your Cut, Scoop and Enjoy photos to zespri@storybookcommunications.co.za.

14 Days of Zespri – Day 13

We’re nearing the end of the Zespri kiwifruit 14 day blogger challenge, today’s challenge is to think up a refreshing kiwifruit drink.

Kiwi and mint rooibos iced tea

Although it’s still pretty cold in Cape Town, it’s the beginning of Spring and the warmer weather is just around the corner. While we’re still wrapped in warm blankets or huddled around fireplaces most Capetonians are dreaming of Summer days filled with braais and picnics. This kiwifruit and mint rooibos iced tea fits pretty neatly into those daydreams.

Kiwi and mint rooibos iced tea

Poured into a small thermos I think this would make a lovely addition to a packed lunch. Or you could spike each glass with a shot of vodka or spiced rum before pouring in the tea for an iced tea cocktail, yum!

Kiwi and mint rooibos iced tea

Ingredients:

  • 4 Tbsp loose rooibos or 4 rooibos teabags
  • 1/3 cup fresh mint leaves
  • 1 litre boiling water
  • 4 tsp honey
  • 1 kiwifruit pureed

Method:

  • Place the rooibos and mint into a tall jug (I used a coffee plunger due to the loose rooibos) and pour over the boiled water.
  • Leave to steep for at least 15 minutes, the long you leave it the stronger the flavours will become.
  • Strain the tea into another just or a bottle.
  • Add the honey and kiwifruit puree, stir to dissolve the honey.
  • Stick in the fridge to cool until you are ready to server.
  • Serve over ice with additional sprigs of mint and slices of kiwifruit if desired.

14 Days of Zespri – Day 12

This is going to be my last packed lunch for the 14 days of Zerspri challenge. I’ve really enjoyed eating my kiwifruit lunches and I’ve loved being able to add some new items to my lunchbox collection. I opted to keep things simple with this lunch so I’ve got a sandwich, a little salad, some crunch veggies and a kiwi hanging out in it personal side cart.

Tomato salad and sandwich lunch

Today’s lunch:

  • A cheese and pickled jalapeno sandwich on low gi multiseed bread,
  • a simple baby tomato salad with spring onions,
  • a few sugar snap peas
  • and a kiwifruit.

Zerspri are currently running a campaign called Occupy Lunchbox through which they’d like encourage parents and children (and anyone else who packs lunches) to make healthy choices when packing lunchboxes. The ambassador for the campaign is a cutie called KID Z, check her out in the video below to hear all about what she stands for as the face of the Occupy Lunchbox movement.

14 Days of Zespri – Day 11

Over the last week and a half I’ve enjoyed eating kiwifruit in all sorts of ways, but my favourite has to be eating it raw, scoop by tasty scoop. Eating it fresh and raw means I can enjoy a low calorie snack high in vitamins B and C with lots of fibre and that helpful actinidin enzyme. Plus it’s low GI too, sounds like the perfect thing to snack on to me.

Up until receiving my Zespri blogger pack for this challenge I’d never actually eaten kiwifruit with a spoon. *le shock* I’d always just laboriously peeled it, cut it into chunks and then eaten it. Eating it with a spife is just so much less messy and more convenient. I thought I’d share with you visually how I use the Cut, Scoop and Enjoy method along with my cute spife when I feel like a quick kiwi snack.

Cut, Scoop and Enjoy

Zespri are currently running a competition until the end of October 2013 where you could win one of four R1,000 Yuppiechef vouchers. All you have to do is snap a photo of yourself, a family member or a friend enjoying a nutritious kiwifruit using the Cut, Scoop and Enjoy method. Once you’ve got your photo you can then enter the competition by emailing it to zespri@storybookcommunications.co.za. Submissions will be uploaded to the Zespri website and the winning submissions will be announced in the first week of November 2013.

14 Days of Zespri – Day 10

Ten days into the Zespri kiwifruit fourteen day challenge, I can hardly believe it. I may not have posted every single day, but I’ve been eating at least one kiwi a day since this challenge started. I’m feeling a little lighter, a little healthier and a whole lot more inspired. I’ll definitely not overlook these fuzzy fruits with the jewelled middles if I see them when out doing our weekly grocery shopping.

Kiwi Coleslaw and Kassler Lunch

I used today’s allocation of kiwifruit in an Asian flavoured coleslaw. I mixed it with sliced celery, julienne ginger, grated carrot, thinly sliced red and green cabbage, a sprinkling of sesame seeds and a drizzle of soy sauce. This is a delicious fresh version of a coleslaw, a lot lighter than mayonnaise laden variety, and is a good partner to the salty smoky kassler.

Today’s lunch:

  • Kiwi coleslaw with celery, ginger, carrot, red cabbage, green cabbage, kiwifruit and sesame seeds,
  • a little blue bear bottle filled with soy sauce to drizzle over the coleslaw just before eating,
  • a sliced kassler chop and
  • some baby tomatoes.

14 Days of Zespri – Day 9

I’ve really enjoyed taking part in the Zespri Daily Scoop of Amazing challenge. I’ve learned you can do more with these fuzzy brown fruits then just peeling them, cutting them into chunks and eating them. I’ve been trying to use them in interesting ways, so far I’ve made a kiwi smoothie, face mask, salsa, kiwi squares and pancakes. As the challenge has progressed I feel like I’ve gotten my blogging mojo back, something I’m very happy to have returned.

My lunchbox today is filled with “leftovers” from a braai we had last night. (Is it still considered leftovers if you purposefully prepared an extra portion of food to stick in your lunchbox?) My boyfriend was so happy to braai that he couldn’t wait to share our interesting supper with his friends over on G+.

Kiwi Kebab Lunch

The ostrich cubes on these kebabs were marinated in a mixture of kiwifruit, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, chilli and olive oil. The kiwifruit in the marinade has a tenderising effect on the meat so it’s best not to let it sit for too long, an hour is perfect. I then skewered them with alternating chunks of kiwifruit and onion. The grilled fruit has a really intensified flavour and the onion turns all sweet and sticky, a yummy option for your next braai or just grilled in the oven.

Today’s lunch:

  • Chickpea, red onion and cucumber salad with zataar and dried apricots,
  • longstem broccolli and
  • braaied ostrich and kiwifruit kebabs.

Here is my recipe for the kiwifruit and ostrich kebabs.

Ingredients:

  • 1 kiwifruit mashed with a fork
  • 2 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp grated garlic
  • 1 tsp grated ginger
  • 1 chopped bird’s eye chili
  • 6 bamboo skewers soaked in water
  • 500g cubed ostrich steak
  • 1 onion cut into 8 pieces
  • 2 kiwifruit cut into 6 pieces each

Method:

  1. Combine kiwifruit, soy sauce, olive oil, garlic, ginger and chili.
  2. Add the cubed ostrich steak and mix so that all the meat is covered in the marinade.
  3. Set aside to marinate for about an hour.
  4. Skewer the cubed ostrich steak interspersing with alternating pieces of kiwifruit and onion.
  5. Grill kebabs for 5 minutes on each side.