Tag Archives: cooking

A little bit of this and a little bit of that………..

Standard

So the kitchen renovations began last week. Pulling off of tiles, plastering, undercoats etc. Today we start on the cupboards. By the end of the week we should be on granite tops, painting and next week hopefully my absolutely delicious flooring I’ve chosen. Then curtains etc.

Fun, to a point. Messy to the moon and back. I find myself uninspired to cook too. My freezer is crammed with Woolies soups, breads, meals etc. Yes, I’ve become a lazy whore  woman. Nina Deli has made a killing out of me with their ready cooked lasagnes.

Oh by the way, Woolies Pumpkin and Sage soup is delicious. Just saying. I’ve never really cooked with Sage. I’m more of a fresh coriander, basil, parsley, thyme, organum and mint kinda gal. So it was lovely to taste that combo together. I shall definitely be looking into what else I can cook with Sage. Yes, I can be a philistine limited cook.

Yesterday we had the photographic club here for the day. The theme was Railway tunnels and Trains. John took them to the Vulture Kranz and they photographed the Cape Vulture in all its splendour. The kids and I joined them after lunch. Spent a lovely morning slothing. Although they all arrived at 6-30am, so I was up early serving coffee.

This morning I pruned my roses, I’ll be shifting some rose bushes and lavender bushes. My one bed is annoying the crap out of me. It’s all unbalanced and has no flow. I get vexed every time I look at it. I need to seriously get a life.

Have a good week.

 

 

Five Straight Shots Against The Wall…..

Standard

This whole Olympic thing is very exciting. And boring. Thank goodnes for remotes, coz you just change the channel. For example I don’t want to watch wrestling, or javelin or weight lifting.

Yesterday I flicked over to weight lifting and the size of the one woman’s thighs were massive. Unattractively so. I’m sure that when she’s nonchalantly walking through the gym she has the respect an awe of all inside the building. I get that. I respect that these sports men and women are at their peak. But does it make me want to watch them. Sometimes no.

I really thought that the SAwomen’s hockey team could have put on a little mascara, or a touch of lipstick. That Revlon makes the most amazing Colourstay lipstick in an array of colours. It lasts for 18 hours. They could have applied it that morning, warmed up, played their game, looked fab for the camera’s and still had some on for there meal that night. Bob’s your uncle!

I’m very proud of  South African Gold Olympian Swimmer, Cameron van der Burgh. Well done my boy. I personally enjoyed watching you on that little podium, gold medal around your neck, and smiling through the National Anthem. It was as if your joy was to big to contain and your smile kept spilling out the corners of your mouth. So lovely to watch happiness so big, so radiant.

PS  The cooking course this weekend was fun. Lots of laughs. Helped along with a bit of caramel vodka….

P.P. S  Watched Magic Mike this weekend. Revolting is all I can say. Strippers gyrating in women’s faces is not my scene. Greasy, shiny bodies with matching greasy hair, is gross. There were brief scenes with threesomes, drugs and vomiting that left me cold and bored.I’m definately picking up a trend with this movie, that women are perhaps seeking sexual fulfillment and that is why 50 Shades and this movie have had so much publicity.

In a nutshell, perhaps this whole trend of metro sexual males is blowing up in their faces and women feel the need for the Return of the Masculine Man to take them and pin them against the wall and give them 5 Straight Shots Against The Wall.

Don’t you think that’s an excellent title for a book in the Mommy Porn genre, 5 Straight Shots Against the Wall?

Actually an excellent name for a cocktail too…….come to think of it.

 

our family kitchen……..

Standard

At the moment I’m growing and hopefully will reap a fine crop of Oyster Mushrooms. Here’s holding thumbs. All my friends have had the most amazing success from these little boxes.

So something different to look forward to and my little chap has taken it on as his own project.

Yesterday I mentioned that I have my cooking mojo back. It is. Totally back. With bells and whisk in hand. I’m cooking again, Even planted out another two mini herb gardens. Only short of basil as it’s not in season. Yes!!! I know one can find it at Woolies and all, but I’m talking home-grown stuff here people! Little seeds sprinkled onto a patch of soil , watered into a sizable crop to transplant. We live in a frost area, so I have to wait.

I planted spinach, beetroot, broccoli, cauli’s, carrots, brussels sprouts(!), and a whole lot of other vegies. My family enjoys brussels sprouts. I’ve never made a scene about them and they’ve eaten them. Sorry to brag, but my kids eat everything. My friend Lizette once told me, that if your kids don’t like something, just leave it and serve it to them again another day. Don’t put labels on them.

There is, however, one thing that Aidan and Molls don’t like and that is mushrooms. They really don’t like them. They have to be disguised in sauces, and in a dish of some kind. I will persevere though.

Last year, on a completely spontaneous whim, I rushed out and bought white plates of different shapes and sizes. I put them in the cupboard and forgot about them until a few months ago. It’s amazing how these little plates, that are quirky, have inspired me to serve my food,  more aesthetically pleasing. Just a twist, to serve something boring in a different dish, just makes it exciting again.

So from my happy warm kitchen to your hopefully happy kitchen..I wish you happy cooking and as my mom always says: “you can see that this was cooked with love!”

And…….at the moment, I’m cooking with a lot of love…..

Lazy days and fun days

Standard

Today is Sunday. Wer’e having the laziest day ever. Church, tea after church and home to veg. And veg we have. I had a marathon sleep this morning for a few hours. I never realised how exhausted my body is after these last 2 and a half months of running around.

Lazyness knows no bounds and I even popped in a Nina lasagna at about 11am on a slow heat which was ready to eat at 2pm. A late, lazy lunch. I then took the kids for a long walk on the farm. Aidan rode his bike and Molls and I followed behind. The two dogs running back and forth between us.

So now I’ve left them all watching the Wimbledon Men’s Final. John and I are rooting for Murray. Aidan for Federer and Molls doesn’t give a toss. When I was growing up, Wimbledon was mandatory in our house. We knew all the stats and figures. These days, for me, it’s a luxury to watch all the games. It takes up too much time.

So much to look forward to this week. A quick overnight trip to my sister. She’s taking me to some Art Exhibitions now in her city and a lovely spot for lunch and then another famous spot for some coffee and cake. What more can a girl ask for? 

I’m also hosting Book club, which I love. I love Book club that is and the girls in Book club are awesome. We laugh a lot in Book club and it’s NEVER about the books. It’s a tea and then as we are leaving, we quickly snatch a few books on the way out. What a lovely group of girls. It’s been a year and a half now and I still feel excited to go to Book club.

And then we’re hosting a big Hunt on Saturday. A big money spinner. All the income from the Hunt comes to me and I have to do all the catering etc. When I say me, I collectively mean towards something for our house. We need a new double door fridge/ freezer thing-a-ma-jig. But I’ll see.

laters baby. (Do you know where this comes from?)

gifts and hobbies and observations………

Standard

A few years ago, when the BBC cooking channel was the height of every South African’s entertainment, John made a very valid observation:” Looks like every Twot and his wok is making a cooking programme!”  Too true. It seemed like it at the time.

Then we went through the Afrikaans music video stage. Every Afrikaans person that could afford(and some that used home video’s too) was making a music video. Pan in swaying blades of grass in time to the music, or a hot blond, with tits out and hot pants, with her granny’s ’60’s suitcase standing with her thumb out on a deserted, allegedly, Karroo gravel road. Next thing a clapped old Beetle would pull up(with CA number plates) and the singer would get out and they would dance or cry in the road together. theoretically speaking, this could never happen. I know ‘coz I owned a beetle. It would be a miracle in itself if a Beetle could drive from Cape Town to any distance further than 3 hours away. That was the Afrikaans music phase.

Now we seem to be going through a, what I affectionately like to call: “Every Twot and his lens phase.” Everyone spending 7 grand or more on a camera and then calling themselves a photographer. All rightee then. We see it on Facebook everyday. Copyright on the left hand side of the photo. Name of the person detracting from the image. Too me, no expert at all, I think the genius in photography, is in the subtlety. Not in the glaringly obvious. or contrived. Very few people have the eye for this. Nine times out of ten, the great photographer themselves is an observer and not a talker. The quiet listener.

But all these creative forms are healthy. Keeps you off the Espiride. Keeps you out of mischief.

But in all art forms, I must admit, I hate anything contrived. A wonderful photo can bring tears to my eyes. I’m going to give you 2 links to follow, of two wonderful photographers. Well, I think they’re great and they make my life richer from the stories their photo’s tell.

‘Till later then:

www.andrewelliott.co.za

http://natalienortonblog.com/2012/04/08/happy-easter-remember-that-time-i-photographed-a-beautiful-little-angels-funeral/

 

Is food and cooking becoming screamingly pretentious and unrealistic?

Standard

Please don’t continue reading if you don’t want to be infected by discontentment, restlessness, or just plain grey, moody March and April.

I’m feeling disgruntled, hostile, filled with discord and just plain incompatible with life at the moment. WTF? I’m usually annoyingly happy.Someone once compared me with the continuously happy nun on Sister Act. You know the one with a fat round face and a happy smile. I was so pissed off with the boy who told me that, that I’ve refused his friendship on facebook twice.

But what I want to discuss today is the latest Food and Home I bought and read this morning.

Is food and cooking becoming screamingly pretentious and unrealistic?

Let me paint a picture. I live on a farm about 110kms away from the nearest city. I bought the mag coz the cover looked delicious. It had a picture of a Plum and Apple crumble, in a bowl, displayed  on a piece of hessian.

The piece of hessian, I presume, is to create a sort of homely look and give one a feeling of using local, farm ingredients. Now, I live on a farm, and not a fuck would I EVER use a piece of Hessian ANYWHERE in my kitchen. It absorbs dust and dirt and continuously sheds little bits of fluff and hessian. I see that Plum and Apple Crumble resting ever so gently on that piece of hessian and I can unfortunately imagine tasting little pieces of hessian and fluff.

So the tasty looking crumble is discredited by the pretentious piece of hessian.

Also some of the recipes use ingredients like:

  • galangal
  • arborio rice
  • asian mushrooms
  • panko breadcrumbs
  • chestnuts

Okay there aren’t to many unknown ingredients, but still, I’m in a critical, slightly bitchy mood. But in all honesty, the recipes seem a tad pretentious and make use of expensive nuts, pomegranate seeds and other expensive ingredients. Ingredients, that I, wouldn’t even be able to locate in the greater Eastern Cape region. So that leaves only those living in Johannesburg, Durban and Cape Town able to cook these recipes. Nice one Food and Home!

So let me ask you again:

Do you think cooking has become a tad pretentious?

on page 40 of the Food and Home there’s a picture of a blonde girl in trendy (spotlessly clean) gumboots touching a little calf. Her white, short, anglaise dress spotless and gleaming in the sunlight. Highly unlikely in real life. Next to her in another photo is a wire crate of glass milk bottles filled with milk. There are NO lids on the milk. HUh? Also highly unlikely.