Archives for August 2014

Cured Beef and Fig Salad with Pickled Carrot and Labneh


2014-03-06 10.15.45

Serves: 6

2 Tbsp (30 ml) olive oil
30–40 slices cured beef (see recipe)
200 g labneh balls
24 ribbons pickled carrot, rolled
12 fresh figs, sliced
mustard greens or wild rocket
20 g toasted pine nuts
Maldon salt
black pepper
balsamic reduction (optional)

Place five to six slices of cured beef on each plate.
Top with balls of labneh, pickled carrot, sliced fig and the salad greens.
Season with salt and black pepper. Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic reduction (if using).

Cured Beef

Makes: 40–60 slices

600 g beef sirloin cut into a log, trimmed, fat and sinews removed (fillet can also be used)

Curing rub:
¾ C (185 ml) sea salt
1/3 C sugar (80 ml)
1–2tsp(5ml) cumin seeds, toasted and crushed
¼ C (60 ml) crushed black pepper
¼ C (60 ml) fresh thyme
1 Tbsp (15 ml) lemon zest
½–1 tsp (2.5–5 ml) toasted and crushed coriander seeds

1 Tbsp (15 ml) lemon zest
2 Tbsp (30 ml) fresh thyme
2 Tbsp (30 ml) finely crushed black pepper

Cut the beef lengthwise into two equal pieces.
Lay a dishtowel out on the table. Sprinkle salt and sugar onto the dishtowel. Sprinkle the cumin, black pepper, thyme, lemon zest and coriander seeds on top. Place the meat in the centre of the dishtowel, wrap neatly and place in the refrigerator.
Refrigerate for 6–12 hours, depending on how much you want the meat to cure.
Remove meat from the dishtowel and gently wipe off the excess rub.
Mix the crust ingredients together and place on a plate or cutting board. Roll the meat in it to cover the meat lightly. Thinly slice the meat and reserve for plating.

The quantity of spice is subject to taste. Adding a little rosemary or chilli, will also work well. Also add more pepper if desired.



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Le grand Aioli featuring boiled or steamed fish, egg, potatoes and vegetables served at room temperature with lots of aioli.

I love this stuff, over the years I have substituted the raw garlic with roasted garlic, but this simple emulsion is a great accompaniment to cold or hot seafood dishes, breads and vegetables. In fact it works on anything I mean anything. Made up of garlic, olive oil, lemon juice and egg yolks. Recipes may differ from one to the next with the amount of garlic used.

I like serving aioli as Le grand Aioli featuring boiled or steamed fish, egg, potatoes and vegetables all prepared in the most simple manner served warm or at room temperature with lots of aioli. (The amount of garlic is a personal thing so think of  your guests)


2 garlic cloves and more if you like
4 garlic cloves roasted
2 egg yolks
1/2 teaspoon mustard (can be omitted, not a must)
300 -330 ml oil (extra virgin or combination of vegetable and olive oil)
1 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice (or white vinegar)
pinch pepper


crush garlic to a fine paste, use the salt to assist in this process.
Combine garlic, egg yolks, lemon juice and mustard in a bowl
Whisk until foamy
Gradually add the oil in a thin stream until incorporated and thick
Adjust seasoning

look out for Milk garlic emulsion too follow soon

First published in Sunday Times Food Weekly


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Avondale Wine and Dine, 29th August 2014

Beef chuck, bbq short rib, butternut and sweet potato pavé, celeriac

WINE & DINE DINNER | 29th August 2014

Canapés on arrival:
beef cheek empanada│beef tartare│cured beef roll with feta and pickled vegetables
Avondale Camissa 2013

Red wine cured kabeljou
grape salad, sour cream
Avondale Anima 2012

Pepper-cured duck breast
confit of leg, char-grilled orange, roasted pear
Avondale Brut Armilla Blanc de Blanc 2009

Lamb tail cannelloni
deep fried poached egg, spinach purée, rocket
Avondale Samsara Syrah 2007

Beef chuck, bbq short rib
butternut and sweet potato pavé, celeriac
Avondale La Luna 2007

Cheese crispy fried mozzarella
smoked tomato, cider glazed onions, whipped brie
Avondale Cyclus 2011

Coffee time …
mascarpone mousse with dulcey cake, mocca ice cream and coffee chantilly
Avondale Muscat Blanc

Freshly brewed coffee and infused tea

starts at 19h00 │ R485 per person

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Duck terrine

Duck Terrine

Pressed duck terrine with a prune puree and a green bean salad

This weeks highlight has featured on the menu for more than three years. It is the first dish that any new chef is exposed to when they start in planet kitchen. The duck terrine is a ritual that takes at least five days to complete. There is no shortcut. I would rather leave it off the menu if it must be rushed. It needs lots of patience.

The bases of the terrine is a showcase of all the elements and parts of the duck, from the neck to the liver. Using various cooking methods from confit to smoking, to slow cooking and curing. Every part is prepared and cooked separately, then layered and pressed for about 36 hours. Then finally we wrap the terrine in prosciutto.

Over the years we have served various accompaniments from curried dried fruit samoosas to a green bean salad. The high light is always with a little prune puree.

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