Monday, December 19, 2011

The Leopard


One of the latest editions to the Parkhurst 4th Avenue strip, The Leopard, occupies a bright airy corner shop opposite other new-comer Vovo Telo. Miss-matched tables, chairs and lamp shades almost make it feel like you’re sitting in someone’s home kitchen.

After 5 years out of the restaurant scene, Andrea Burgener’s newest venture has people talking. The menu is delightfully non-obvious and the offerings change regularly, so return visits are inevitable. They cook with local ingredients, fee range chickens, grass fed beef and fish from the SASSI green list – all around good ingredients are the order of the day.

The dishes are average Joburg restaurant prices, but the fact that it’s still BYO alcohol really makes for an affordable boozy lunch! The service is friendly although a little slow – but this is the kind of place to kick back and relax for a couple of hours to soak up the Jozi summer and relaxed atmosphere.

Open for breakfast and lunch every day, but only open for dinner on Wednesday and Friday. NOTE They don’t take credit cards – but there is an ATM right next door.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Festive Summer Recipes

Long gone are the days of slaving over a hot oven to produce the quintessential Roast Turkey. South Africans are embracing the summer festive season in by making chilled light dishes that can easily be prepared in advance.

Here are 3 easy recipes for lazy days spent around the pool with family and loved ones.

Rooibos Punch
(Makes 4L)

Ingredients
1 L Rooibos Tea
1 L Ginger Ale
1 L Orange Juice
500 ml Soda Water
500 ml Lemon Vodka or Pimms or Cane
Mint for garnish.
Lemons for garnish.

How to make it
Prepare Rooibos Tea and allow to cool.
Combine all the ingredients in a large punch bowl.
Add crushed ice.
Garnish with Mint & Lemon slices.


Blue Cheese, Ricotta and Baby Marrow Terrine
Serves 6-8

Ingredients

Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
2T Lemon juice
½t Salt
Black pepper
3T Extra virgin olive oil
3 – 6 Baby marrows (depending on their size)
200g Creamy blue cheese
250g Ricotta cheese

How to make it

Slice the baby marrows lengthwise as thinly as possible (a peeler works well for this). Lay flat in a tray.
Whisk together the lemon juice, zest, salt and good grinding of black pepper to create a marinade.
Pour over the sliced baby marrows and marinate for at least 1 hour, turning the slices occasionally so they all get a good dose of marinade.
Line a loaf tin with cling wrap, with a generous overhang. (It helps if you drizzle the plastic with a bit of olive oil for handling)
Line the cling wrap with marinated baby marrow strips, overlapping a bit and with an overhang to fold over.
Combine blue cheese and ricotta.
Spoon into baby marrow lined tin, fold over the baby marrows, then the cling wrap and press down firmly.
Refrigerate at least 1 hour before unmoulding.


Serve with seeded bread or biscuits as part of lunch, or cheese course.


 Duck Liver Terrine
 Serves 6-8

 Ingredients

 500g Duck Livers, cleaned and trimmed
 500g Pork Belly, chopped or minced
 250g Chicken Mince
 25g Bread Crumbs
 125ml Chicken Stock
 250g Streaky Bacon
 2T Fresh Thyme
 1T Fresh Oregano
 1T Dried Coriander
 1t Dried Nutmeg
 80ml Brandy
 2T Butter
 1 Small Sweet Onion, finely chopped
 2T Garlic, crushed
 2T Olive Oil
 4 – 6 Bay Leaves
 2 tsp each Coarse Salt & Cracked Black Pepper

 How to make it

 Heat a heavy based pan and melt 1 Tbls Butter until it starts to bubble. Add Duck 
 livers and fry on each side for no more than a minute, until just browned. Remove from 
 pan and chop into chunky pieces.
 In the same pan melt another Tbls Butter and add ¾ of the onion, fry on a low heat 
 for about 5 minutes. Add 2 Tbls Garlic and fry for another minute. Set aside.
 Pre-heat your oven to 180°C.
 Place the bay leaves at the bottom of an oiled terrine tin, layer bacon diagonally 
 across to form the outside of the terrine.
 Mix all the remaining ingredients (including the cooked duck livers and onion) well.
 Press the mixture firmly into the terrine mold. Once all the mix has been used, cover 
 with a lid (or foil) and bake for about 80 minutes – until firm to the touch and slightly 
 shrunken.
 Place weights on top of the terrine to compress the ingredients slightly.
 Refrigerate and serve chilled with spiced cherries.


*The terrine recipes are from a book on Terrines by Fiona Smith, the punch is our own.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Growing our own Oyster Mushrooms

The fiancé recently turned 30 and was given a ‘Grow your own Oyster Mushrooms’ kit by our good friends Elke and Erol. I’ve always had a slight obsession with mushrooms, so I was thrilled when he unwrapped this particular gift.

The mushroom spawn comes neatly packaged in a box with clear instructions – open, cover, water and wait. After about two weeks the plastic covering the window over the front of the box started bulging and we knew the mushies were soon to appear – and they literally ‘popped up like mushrooms’ overnight! Within a couple of days we had a flourishing ‘branch’ of beautiful Oyster Mushrooms.

Wiets neatly cut them off their roots and simply fried them up in butter and garlic – delish! There really is something rewarding about growing and cooking something yourself, especially if it tastes that good J

For more info on the Mushroom Growing Kits visit; www.mushroomfactory.co.za. PS. This makes a great gift for anyone that likes to cook.


Our oyster Mushroom harvest

The neat box the kit is packaged in

Monday, November 28, 2011

My Favourite Things


We attended the second FoodWineDesign Fair at Hyde Park this past weekend. Presented by Sanlam and Artlogic, the fair showcases some of South Africa’s best local producers – from jewelry and furniture to cheese, chocolate and mushrooms. 

The event takes place on the roof-top – some seating areas are in the tent and others in a park style setting outside. With live entertainment, delicious tasters from all the foodie stalls and eye candy provided by designers live GOET and Tinsel, the fair is heaven to those who like all the finer (tastier and prettier) things in life.

I’ll definitely be there again next year! 

PS Spending hours sipping wine with the girls on a piece of fake grass is summer bliss ;)

Monday, November 21, 2011

Justin Bonello cooks… for friends


Last week we attended the launch of local celebrity cook Justin Bonello’s latest offering ‘Justin Bonello cooks… for friends.’ Wine flowed freely and guests were treated to dishes inspired by recipes from his book – the ‘Yin & Yan Gazpacho’ is delicious!

The book (like Justin) is casual, unpretentious and local. Easy to follow recipes with inspired twists, I just can’t wait to get cooking! Justin answered a few questions about the book and his food philosophy and I think this phrase summed it up perfectly; “Food should be accessible.”

The evening was topped off with Justin’s ‘Chocolate Vodka’ and we left there with a warm feeling indeed.

His book is available at Exclusive Books country wide, and retails for about R270.00 – a great gift for foodies! 

Friday, November 18, 2011

Festive Table with GOLDCREST


Check out our latest Festive recipes using GOLDCREST products – 
and yes, all the dishes were made using ingredients that come from cans! 

Click here for the pics and recipes on Joburg.co.za.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Aanklank hou konsert en LekkerBek maak kos


Wanneer
Sondag 4 Desember

Tyd
12:00

Waar
Jan Celliers Laerskool, Onderparkrylaan, 
Parkview, Johannesburg

Hoeveel
R60 net konsert
R100 konsert en ‘n LekkerBek ciabatta
R150 konsert en ‘n LekkerBek piekniek lunch



Spyskaart
Ciabatta met cured ham, smoked mozzarella, rocket en balsamic reduction.
OF Roasted veggies met feta en basil pesto.
OF Piekniek lunch met crab sushi, chicken coronation, wild rice salad, baby tomatoes met feta en basil, broccoli met snow peas en Xmas rocky road.

Te koop
Wyn en ys
Collapsible cooler bags vir een bollel wyn
Soet goed
Gebottelde produkte (soos olywe)
Aanklank CDs

Bring
Jou eie drank en glase en ekstra geldjie vir die kersmark tafel

Bespreek of vir meer inligting
wirie@lekkerbek.co.za
082 552 8835
teen 30 November

*NB Geen kos gaan op die dag los verkoop word nie, 
alles moet vooraf bespreek word. 

Monday, November 7, 2011

Beetroot, Rocket, Bacon & Parmesan Salad


One of the tastiest salads ever!

Beetroot, Rocket, Bacon & Parmesan Salad
Serves six as a starter

You will need
1kg Baby Beetroot, peeled and quartered
6 handfuls Rocket
250g Bacon
Olive Oil
6 Tbls Brown Sugar
Balsamic Vinegar
Salt
Black Pepper
Parmesan shavings
Balsamic Reduction

How to make it
Boil the beetroot until just soft (we use a pressure cooker as this can take some time.)
Pre-heat oven to 180°C.
Layer the beetroot quarters on a flat baking tray, season with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, salt and pepper.
Bake until slightly caramelised, set aside to cool.
Fry bacon until crispy, cut into small pieces and cool.
Plating up:
Layer rocket leaves on a plate of your choice.
Top with roasted beetroot.
Sprinkle with bacon bits.
Finish off with Parmesan shavings and a drizzle of Balsamic reduction.

Tips
  • Use butternut instead of beetroot and sprinkle with pumpkin seeds.
  • You can buy pre-prepared beetroot for more convenience.
  • Leave out the bacon for a veggie version.
  • This salad can be served as a large table salad or individually plated.
  • The elements of this salad can be made the day before a dinner party and simply plated on the day, saving you from slaving in the kitchen while your guests are there. 




Friday, November 4, 2011

Full Meat Friday

This was a meal my mom prepared for my brother just before he left for Europe in fear of not eating meat for four weeks J And this is exactly what I feel like having for dinner tonight! A meat fest with all the trimmings – including Malva Pudding to top it off- YUM!  


 

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Artichoke season!

To our utter delight Artichokes are in season and available in almost every store at the moment-  and we couldn’t resist buying a whole box the other day. We ended up steaming them, grilling them, baking them and finally marinated the rest – delicious!


Fresh artichokes


Marinated with thyme, garlic, lemon rind an black peppercorns 

Friday, October 28, 2011

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Summer Love


Champagne, oysters, sushi, cheese platters, Parma ham, pastries, fresh bread… this is our idea of the perfect summer’s day! We attended the Champagne festival at Summer Place in September, and photos had us drooling all over again.

Here's to lazy Sunday’s sipping chilled bubbly in the summer sun with the ones we love.

PS. I want a dessert table like that at my next party! *YUM*
PPS. The fiancé wants a cheese table like that every day J

Friday, October 14, 2011

Celebrate with bruschettas and champagne

The weather is gorgeous, our garden is in full flower and it is the silly season! Reason to celebrate with sumptuous bruschettas and champagne J

How to make:

Toasted bruschettas
Buy foot long rolls at your local supermarket, slice into bite size pieces.
Melt some butter and olive oil in the microwave.
Brush both sides of the bread with the butter and oil – using a pastry brush (you can add a touch of chopped garlic for some extra flavour).
Bake in the oven at 180°C until golden brown on both sides (about 10 to 15 minutes). Don’t take your eyes off them, they can burn in a second!

Exotic Mushroom and Asparagus topping
6 French leeks, finely sliced
2 punnets of exotic mushrooms
1 tub cream cheese
1 bunch fresh young asparagus
Salt & Black Pepper

Slice the bigger mushrooms to fit on the bread rounds.
Flash fry mushrooms in hot non stick pan with a knob of butter and drizzle of olive oil – squeeze over some fresh lemon juice, season and set aside to cool.
Flash fry leeks in the same pan with another glug of olive oil, season and set aside to cool.
Steam asparagus until just tender – cut of the tops and use the stems in a salad.
Spread a thin layer of cream cheese on the bruschetta’s and layer first with leeks then the mushrooms and top with asparagus.

Goats Cheese and Sun-dried Tomato topping
1 packet sun-dried tomatoes (we prefer Ina Paarman)
Capers
1 Round Chevin with black pepper and paprika
Guacamole (optional)

Cut the Chevin into thin rounds and place on bruschettas.
Place a slice of sun-dried tomato and a caper on the cheese.
*We placed the caper on a knob of guacamole, which you can either buy or make yourself.

Enjoy with chilled champagne of your choice!

Tips:
-         -  You can keep the toasted bruschettas for up to 2 months in an airtight container.
-          - Try different toppings like Caramelised Red Onion & Vintage Cheddar, Salmon & Cream Cheese, Thinly sliced Fillet & Wasabi Mayo, Grilled Veggies & Balsamic Reduction etc.



Goats Cheese and Sun-dried Tomato topping


Exotic Mushroom and Asparagus topping





Monday, October 10, 2011

A French Food Affair

France is one of my favourite destinations, not only is it rich in history & art, beautiful and romantic, but it’s also one of the top gourmet destinations in the world. The fiancé and I spent a few days road tripping through the Champagne region – and yes, we drank loads of it! – and ended our trip with a couple of days in Paris, the city of not only Love, but of Baguettes, Cheeses and Fresh Food Markets. We we’re in foodie heaven! Besides buying a wedding dress (yay!) the only other shopping we did was for food… This is what we shared with the family upon our return:

Smoked duck breast, a selection of (very stinky) delicious cheeses, terrine, salami, duck Foie gras and enormous globe Artichokes – this is by far the best way to share holiday stories with your family! 


Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Au revoir

The Fiancé and I are off to France tomorrow - yayness! Here are some pics of the food that we are so looking forward to.








I’ll give a full report (with loads of pics) upon our return.

Au revoir!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

LekkerBek & GOLDCREST


We just finished a very exciting project with GOLDCREST… LekkerBek developed 8 recipes using GOLDCREST products – and we must say that we were super impressed by the quality of their canned goods.

We also did the food photography for this project – a very exciting new leg of the LekkerBek offerings.

Check out the recipes and photos here. And remember to subscribe to Joburg.co.za to receive regular updates, news, events and recipes – it’s really a great guide to ‘things to do in Joburg’. 



Monday, September 19, 2011

Taste of Joburg


Jozi is abuzz with food festivals in September and foodies are totally spoilt for choice. We attended the Taste of Joburg this weekend, and I really wish we could have stayed longer (or gone again)! There were so many amazing restaurants to sample, chilled sparkling wines and Sauvignon Blancs to be gulped and producers stalls to be visited that one day simply is not enough. Not to mention the live demonstrations and performers that add to the vibe.

The weather cleared up and people were sipping chilled drinks under large umbrellas until we were forced to leave as the next session was about to start. Here are some of the dishes we tried and briefly what we thought of them:

Bellagio: Sashimi style Scottish Salmon, with a variety of shoots, ginger and garlic chips and a citrus dressing. *Loved the garlic chips.

DW eleven – 13: Steak Tartar hand chopped beef, capers, gherkins, onions, spicy mayo and Bloody Mary sorbet. *Very flavoursome and interesting contrast offered by the sorbet.

Piccolo Mondo: Lamb shoulder with fried butternut Gnocchi, braising vegetables and a pinotage onion marmalade. & Crunchy prawn and ricotta pasta ‘pillows’ served on wild mushrooms with a smoked salmon Champagne cream. *Lamb was perfect but the pasta pillows where a bit bland, mushrooms were tasty.

roots @ Forum Homini: Self saucing Malva pudding, homemade ginger ice cream and kumquat preserve. *AMAZING Served with a cute tube of custard, this was one of the standout dishes.

Sel et Poivre & Le Petit Sel: Belgian ‘Moule-frites’ (mussels & fries) *Yum, totally moreish!

The Saxon: Parma ham-wrapped terrine of Foie Gras ‘farmer style’, served with warm brioche. & Rocky Road, honey and rose water ice cream, chocolate brownie, praline and homemade marshmallow. *Terrine was rich and delicious & Dessert was a playfull plate of goodness and textures.

Taste of Joburg really is a showcase for the best that Joburg has to offer, and a great platform for restaurants to introduce their food philosophies to people that wouldn’t necessarily have known about them. It’s quite expensive (R60 entrance and between R20 – R40 for a small portion) but the chefs use great ingredients so it’s definitely worth it.

Great festival – will be back next year! 

Click here for the full menu. 




Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Neighbourgoods Market Joburg

Joburg is an amazing city to live in; great weather, fab restaurants, and an intangible pulse. But we’ve always had something missing… a proper food market that not only serves as a shopping destination but also as a delightful day out.

Enter Neighbourgoods Market. Finally! Cape Town has been spoilt for years with the market at The Old Biscuit Mill, and now Joburgers also get a foodie spoil in Braamfontein each Saturday.

Located on the first and second levels of a building in the city, this market boasts a selection of Cpt regulars as well as some Jozi producers. Expect to find everything from fresh produce, flowers, artisanal beers, handmade chocolates, cheeses, cured hams, clothing, jewelry and a vast selection of prepared-on-the-spot food stalls.

What sets the Jozi version apart from Cpt is ample seating and more space, with long wooden tables and benches on both levels and clever sitting stations around the outside (designed by Dokter and Misses) it really makes for a fabulous day out. Whether you choose to buy bits and pieces to create your own snack platter, or try different offerings from the food vendors, there is something for everyone.

Get there early (before 10 am) to ensure you get a prime seat outside on the roof, start your day with a Bloody Mary and work your way through the stalls – and remember to pick up some fresh bread and cheese to take home.

I can see it becoming a Joburg intuition… we’ll certainly be back (several times).

For more info, click here

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Bronze Age Flatware

I found these on my friend Bailey’s Blog (http://buryanddiscover.blogspot.com/) – 
her sister Cheska guest Blogged about these STUNNING pieces from Anthropologie.

They would be perfect for our next dinner party :)

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Reel Seeds for Spring Day

We just LOVE these Reel Seeds
You just plant the strip, water regularly and voila, 
you’ve got a herb garden!

It’s the perfect Spring Day gift (or anytime gift for that matter J), 
just click here for more info on Reel Seeds 
and other great Spring Day gifts.


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Cube Tasting Kitchen


It has been a long standing debate that Johannesburg just can’t seem to match up with the caliber restaurants that one might find in Cape Town. The closest us Gautengers could get to the fancy Capetonian tasting menus was at Roots Restaurant (I blogged about this Top 10 restaurant here), but it’s at the Forum Homini Hotel in The Cradle of Humankind – much too far to drive for a boozy dinner…

Enter Cube Tasting Kitchen. Finally, Joburgers can brag about a restaurant on our doorstep that matches any of the establishments in Cape Town (or anywhere in South Africa for that matter). Dario D'Angeli of Yum fame is behind this venture, and according to their Twitter brief they are a “Tasting kitchen - not restaurant. Small, intimate and focused. We are about a food experience, so leave your watch behind!!” and that is exactly what it is! The menu changes with the seasons a couple of times a year with a focus on fresh seasonal ingredients.

We enjoyed an 18 course meal (see full menu below), and it was absolutely delightful! Creative, detailed, innovative and not to mention delicious. Dario and fellow chef Jonty visited each table personally to explain the dishes, so it really made for an intimate evening. After hours of eating and tasting miniature portions of dishes ranging from a Wild Mushroom Soup that looked like a mini Guinness, to a Lobster & Chorizo Barley to the most decadent Rosemary infused Chocolate Shot, we left VERY satisfied and certainly inspired.

At R450.00 per person it’s not a cheap night out, but I see this as a restaurant for special occasions (I’m sure I can find something to celebrate every time the seasons change…) and a bonus is that you can BYO, and they don’t charge corkage. Dario was very helpful in suggesting wine pairings for the dishes, and it really enhances the experience so it’s worth visiting the kitchen as a group of 6 or more.

I wouldn’t be surprised if we see this restaurant on the Eat Out Top 10 list soon. For more info click here.



  18 Bite sized dishes, chef explanations, great wine 
- an evening to remember!

 The July/August menu