Archives for March 2015




Makes about 12 ring doughnuts and 6 jam doughnuts


500g cake flour

2ml (½ tsp) salt

10g (1 sachet) dry yeast

60g sugar

210ml lukewarm milk

2 large eggs, lightly beaten

2.5ml (½ tsp) finely grated lemon zest

2.5ml (½ tsp) vanilla essence

60ml (¼ cup) sunflower or canola oil, plus extra for deep-frying

Apricot jam, for filling

Caster sugar, for dusting


Mix the flour, salt, yeast and sugar together. Add the warmed milk to the dry ingredients and mix until combined. Mix in the eggs, lemon zest and vanilla essence. Gradually add the oil, beating until well combined. Knead until it forms a ball.

Wrap in plastic or place in a covered container and leave to rise for about 40 minutes, until doubled in size.

Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and roll out to 1cm thickness. Cut into rings using an 8cm round cutter. Cut out the centre of each ring with a 3.5cm round cutter. Cover and let rise for a further 20 minutes or until doubled in size.

Roll the centre cut-outs into 6 balls (combining 2 cut-outs to form each ball) and deep fry in hot oil. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel. Heat clean oil (to 180°C if you have a deep-fryer) and deep-fry the “holey” doughnuts until golden. Remove and drain. Allow to cool, then pipe jam into the small doughnuts and dust all the doughnuts with caster sugar.


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Irish Stew


Irish stew

WHETHER or not you can trace a few roots back to Ireland, this rich, robust Irish classic will please any family.


1.5kg cubed lamb (from neck, shin or shoulder)

Water, to cover

1 bouquet garni (muslin sachet containing parsley, thyme and bay leaf)

300g onions, chopped

180g leeks, chopped

50g celery, chopped (optional)

90g turnips, peeled and cubed

250g carrots, cubed

400g potatoes, peeled and cubed

500ml (2 cups) lamb or beef stock

75g cabbage, shredded

Small bunch fresh parsley, chopped

Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Worcestershire sauce, to taste


Place the lamb in a pot and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil, then drain and rinse the lamb. (I like adding the bones to this initial cooking process for flavour, then removing them.)

Return the rinsed lamb cubes to the pot with the bouquet garni, onions, leeks, celery, turnips, carrots and 50g potatoes.

Pour over the stock, add enough water to cover all the ingredients and bring to a gentle simmer. Simmer for 1 hour, regularly skimming off any foam and fat from the surface. Add the remaining potatoes and continue cooking for about 25 minutes.

Remove the bouquet garni and stir in the cabbage and parsley. Season to taste and add Worcestershire sauce, according to your preference. Serve hot with soda bread or a nice country loaf. And a pint of Guinness, of course.

Published in Sunday Times 2012 


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I love eating and it is because of all fond food memories that I continue to enjoy food above making or cooking it, no ingredient has left such a deep impression like this fruit. From early childhood memories, enjoying grandma Dennie’s brinjal breyani, I remember every little detail up to the table cloth in her small Berea flat. My first vegan meal with brinjal and peanuts at the Hare Krishna house in Hillbrow, the aubergine  chutney served with the Flying Boar Burger by Wynand van Rooyen. My first outside catering function where we served fried egg plants. Every time I make salad at home it ends up having brinjal in it, and my daughter loves me for this.

How can I forget, two years ago while travelling through Malaysia on the Eastern Oriental Express en route to Singapore, we had just passed the River Kwai when lunch was served, a fiery Thai chicken curry with the tiniest little brinjal (makhuea pro).

As a young executive chef one of my first gourmet wine evenings working at the Parktonian hotel in Braamfontein, I got this amazing recipe from Art Culinaire, a pressed vegetable terrine with layers of delicately cooked vegetables, each flavoured to perfection then brought together in one moment with grilled brinjal, slow roasted tomatoes, roasted peppers. It was so simple but at the same time it was complex.

Call them what you want…… they are amazing, my new favourite baked with miso, so unbelievable!

If eaten raw it has a bitter taste, but once cooked it becomes a vessel that works with so many applications absorbing and highlighting the richness, as Fortunato Mazzone makes his “parmigiana di melanzane”, fried and baked with tomato and Parmesan, this is a recipe that is worth killing for.

Moussaka, Ratatouille, Baba Ghanoush, İmam bayildi, Caponata. It is clear that it is an important part of any vegans and vegetarians diet and it is clear to see why. Even dried brinjal that is seasoned with vinegar, salt, coriander and pepper then dried to look like biltong sticks.

Greatest thing about a brinjal is that it is available all year round, original word brinjal derived from Portuguese name beringela. Derived from the Arabic term badinjan. The French transformed it to Aubergine. Called egg plant when introduced to Europe and America because of the common variety grown resembled hen’s egg.

So call it what you want melanzana, garden egg, patlican, brinjal, egg plant, aubergine, badnijan

Baba Ghanoush (Egg plant dip)

4 ea large Brinjal
2 tbsp parsley chopped
2 tbsp mint chopped or chiffonade
4 Garlic cloves roasted and 1 raw chopped crushed fine

30ml lemon juice and 1/2  tsp lemon zest
2 – 3tbsp / 20-30ml tahini
40 ml olive oil
salt and black pepper, to taste
2 tbsp sesame toasted

Prick the aubergines with a fork.
Grill the aubergines on an open flame grill until charred. Brinjal will be soft. This will take a good 20 minutes.
Allow to cool and remove pulp and chop fine
Combine garlic, zest, lemon juice, tahini, olive oil and pepper.
Combine the flesh with garlic mixture, parsley and mint.
Adjust seasoning and serve.

If you prefer a more smokey Baba Ghanoush, slice brinjals into thick slices, season rub with olive oil then grill.

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Smoked dusky kob salad

Kob Salad

Smoked Dusky Kob Salad

Featured dish and highlight this week is The smoked dusky kob salad. Since we installed the smoker into production and butcher two years ago we have made great progress in smoking, from cold to hot smoking, salt to brisket, even oil.

We were originally looking for a substitute for peppered mackerel and we ended up using the dusky kob from the Eastern Cape (sassi green listed). We tried cold smoke as well as hot smoke, the hot smoke left the greater impression,  so we decided to rather create a salad in Planet around it. Later we moved the salad to the lounge.

For the rest of the salad we added avocado and charred corn with a jalapeno dressing.


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