Snap, Sizzle & Cook

Sharing my love of food and everything pretty

Curried Mussel Pot Pies

For all seafood fanatics like myself, what could be more enticing than mussels smothered in a velvety, mild, curry flavoured cream topped with a buttery, crispy, light pastry? Enter the Curried Mussel Pie! I adapted this recipe from one of my favourite cookbooks, The Pie Book which is written by Caroline Bretherton. What I love about pies (besides the 10 million calories) is their versatility. They can be bought anywhere, from your corner café to your more elaborate supermarket, they are ideal for filling the hunger gap, can be made in advance and they freeze beautifully for up to 1 month.
For this delicious pie filling, you will need:
800g Mussel meat (cleaned)
1 tbsp. olive oil
25g butter
1 onion roughly chopped
1 bunch of parsley
120ml dry white wine
120ml fish stock
4 baby leeks, sliced
2 carrots, sliced
2 tsp medium curry powder
2 tsp fresh chilli (very finely chopped)
1 punnet fresh cream
2 tbsp. chopped coriander
For the Pastry:
1 roll of already made Puff pastry
Method:
In a heavy based saucepan on medium heat, melt the butter and olive oil together. Add the onion, leeks, carrots, parsley, curry powder and chilli and simmer for 5 minutes.
Onions, carrots, leaks
Add the white wine and fish stock, turn stove on low and allow to simmer for a further 10 minutes.
Fresh Mussel meat
Finally, add the mussel meat, fresh coriander and cream, mix through and allow to simmer for 5 minutes.
Divide Mussel mixture between 6 – 8 10cm round pie dishes.
Curried Mussel Pot Pies
Roll out the pastry onto a floured surface and cut into 6 – 8 “lids” to fit the top of the pie dishes. Moisten the rim of each dish with water and press the lids on firmly to seal. Brush with a beaten egg and cut a hole in the centre of each lid to allow steam to escape.
Pies ready for the oven
Place the pies on a baking tray and bake at 200 degrees Celsius for 15-20 minutes until browned.
Curried Mussel pies
Curried Mussel pies

Beverly Hills “then and now” experience

What better way to spend a Thursday afternoon than at the beautiful, tranquil setting of the Beverly Hills.  This landmark Hotel in Umhlanga, KZN is known for her gracious hospitality, beauty and exceptional service from friendly, forthcoming staff.

Breathtaking view from the balcony

Breathtaking view from the balcony

This year, 2014, marks the hotels 50th birthday and for reasons unknown, I was one of the “chosen ones” invited to enjoy a taster lunch at the Beverly Hills eminent restaurant, The Sugar Club.
The Beverly Hills
The concept behind the lunch which was named “Then and Now” for nostalgic reasons was to taste familiar, memorable dishes from the 70’s and compare how they are prepared today in 2014. Being a reminiscent and nostalgic kind of person, my favourite dishes were from the “then” side of the plate with the exception of the Crayfish Thermidore only because I’m a bacon freak.
The food was deliciously and lovingly prepared by Head Chef, Tony Kocke who explained each dish to us as it arrived at the table.

Our "then and now" menu for the afternoon

Our “then and now” menu for the afternoon

Below are pics of the dishes we ate which I’ve captioned directly from the menu. The left hand side of the plate with the exception of the dessert dishes is the “then” and the right hand side, which is quite obvious because of the plating techniques is the “now”

The "then" on the left is sliced ripe avocado served with a tiger prawn tail topped with Marie Rose sauce and garnished with a lemon wedge.  The "now" on the right is avocado ice cream surrounded by poached Atlantic prawns served with tears of aioli sauce and pearls of tomato and spicy cognac sauce garnished with micro herbs

The “then” on the left is sliced ripe avocado served with a tiger prawn tail topped with Marie Rose sauce and garnished with a lemon wedge. The “now” on the right is avocado ice cream surrounded by poached Atlantic prawns served with tears of aioli sauce and pearls of tomato and spicy cognac sauce garnished with micro herbs

The classic "then" crayfish is served in a mustard mushroom sauce topped with parmesan cheese and sprinkled with paprika powder.  The "now" which was my favourite because of the bacon is slightly grilled scallops of crayfish tail topped with brandy flambéed exotic mushroom, mustard beurre blanc and flame parmesan foam

The classic “then” crayfish is served in a mustard mushroom sauce topped with parmesan cheese and sprinkled with paprika powder. The “now” which was my favourite because of the bacon is slightly grilled scallops of crayfish tail topped with brandy flambéed exotic mushroom, mustard beurre blanc and flame parmesan foam

On the left is the "then" Beef fillet surrounded with mushroom mousse baked in golden puff pastry served with béarnaise sauce and on the right of the dish is the "now" Fillet of Midland Beef presented with puff pastry coins filled with mushroom mousse served with tarragon infused egg jelly

On the left is the “then” Beef fillet surrounded with mushroom mousse baked in golden puff pastry served with béarnaise sauce and on the right of the dish is the “now” Fillet of Midland Beef presented with puff pastry coins filled with mushroom mousse served with tarragon infused egg jelly

Table side prep of the "then" Crepes Suzette

Table side prep of the “then” Crepes Suzette

"Now" is a Suzette mousse in pancake cone with orange liquid jelly and vanilla pod ice cream drops

“Now” is a Suzette mousse in pancake cone with orange liquid jelly and vanilla pod ice cream drops

Fry’s Spicy Sausage Pasta

I am having so much fun experimenting and cooking with the Fry’s range of products.  Today I made spaghetti and incorporated Fry’s Spicy Sausages which I formed into “meatball” shapes and cooked in a tomato base to form a lovely Ragu.  I was very cheeky and added a tin of baked beans to my sauce.  It gives a lovely flavour and texture to the dish.
Fry's Spicy Meatball Pasta
To make this tasty dish, you will need the following:
1 Packet Fry’s spicy sausages, thawed
Spaghetti for 4 people
50g butter (for frying)
1 Tbsp crushed garlic
Pinch of Salt
1 Tin of diced tomatoes
1 Tin of Baked beans in tomato sauce
3 Tbsp sugar
Handful of Coriander finely chopped

Method:
Cut each sausage into 4 pieces and shape to form walnut size balls. Heat the butter and fry the sausage balls till done. Set aside. In the same pan, empty contents of both tins and add the sugar, salt, garlic and coriander. Let it simmer for about 5 minutes. Add the sausage balls to the tomato mix and let simmer for a further 3 minutes. Prepare the spaghetti as per packet instructions and serve with the tomato ragu.
Fry's Spicy Meatball Pasta

Fry’s Thai Green Curry

I love the flavours of Thai food, especially the curries.  I enjoy spicy food despite some serious bouts of heartburn, but nothing that the trusted “Gaviscon” can’t fix.  This recipe is dead easy and versatile because you can swop the veggies to your preferences as well as the type of meat you prefer.
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You will need:
1 box of Fry’s Crispy Prawns, thawed
2 Tbsp of olive oil
1 cup of each of the following veggies (green pepper, baby corn, baby marrow, red cabbage and mushroons)
Pinch of cumin (jeera) seeds
Pinch of salt
1/2 onion sliced
2 sprigs of thyme
2 Tbsp of Thai Green Curry paste
250 ml coconut cream
Handful of cashew nuts

Instructions:
Heat oil in a medium sized pot and add mixed vegetables, cumin seeds and salt.  Allow to simmer for 3-5 minutes.   Add onion and thyme and simmer for a further 3-5 minutes.  Add Thai Green Curry paste, coconut cream and cashew nuts and stir in coriander.  Cook through and set aside. 
Using the on pack instructions, prepare the prawns.  Plate the veggies and place 3-4 prawns on top and serve.

Fry’s Moroccan Burger

As mentioned in my previous post (here), I promised that I would share some of the delicious recipes that I got to experience at the Fry’s Gourmet Veggie Feast which took place on the 27th August at the renowned Harvey’s Restaurant in Umhlanga.  This delicious recipe is the first to feature in a series of Fry’s recipes over the next couple of days on my blog.  

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For this scrumptious burger you will need:
1 Fry’s Chicken-Style Burger, thawed
1 burger bun
1 tablespoon of olive oil
Lettuce leaves, finely chopped or micro Leaves
2 tomato slices, finely sliced
Handful of julienned cucumber
Coriander to garnish
Feta to garnish

Charmoula Sauce Ingredients:
40ml fresh cream
1 tablespoon of harissa paste (Pick ‘n Pay)
Pinch of salt

Instructions:
Cut burger bun in half, grill on a heated frying pan until golden brown and set aside.
Add olive oil to the pan and toss in burger. Fry burger until golden brown and set aside.  
Charmoula Sauce:
In the same pan add fresh cream, harissa and salt. Bring to the boil and set aside.
Build your burger using the bun as the base.  Add the burger, lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, fresh coriander, and feta.  Finally drizzle the Charmoula Sauce over the burger and enjoy.

Fry’s Gourmet Veggie Feast

On Wednesday 27th August Fry’s foods hosted a Gourmet Veggie Feast at Harvey’s Restaurant in Umhlanga with 2 of the finest chefs in the business; Chef Nizam who reigns from Mauritius and our very own Andrew Draper who is head chef at the renowned Harvey’s Restaurant.

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I was privileged to be part of this mouthwatering event which has profoundly changed my way of thinking when it comes to Vegetarianism.  The food that was prepared was colourful, delicious and truly impressive.

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I will definitely be sharing some Fry’s food recipes on my blog in the near future.

Camp Orchard Winter Country Day

Camp Orchards- Winter Country Day Poster
Camp Orchards Winter Country Day (Inanda Rd, Hillcrest 3650,  Tel:  031 765 5576) is about enjoying the spectacular setting of Camp Orchards in a market style country morning, with a focus on health & wellness. Enjoy the range of organic and natural products available, the delicious picnic style food stalls, wine tasting and much more. Find a spot to picnic under the tree’s and listen to the band or challenge friends to a game of Boules or croquet. Hear our Guest Speaker, Davey du Plessis,  Amazon survivor and plant-based adventurer share his remarkable story based on his book ‘Choosing to Live’.

Find time to explore our magnificent accommodation available, get to know our spa packages, and enjoy a shop in our country store.”

*Tickets will be available to purchase on Web Tickets

https://www.webtickets.co.za/event.aspx?itemid=828712853
Camp Orchards- Winter Country Day Poster 2

Lemon Tartlets

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These delicious tartlets are individually low in carbs and a great treat for those sweet toothed banters like myself.  I’ve used my Coconut Truffle recipe for the base which you can get here.  Once you’ve made the base mixture, press into individual tartlet baking tins (makes 5) and bake blind at 180 degrees Celsius for 10 minutes.  Remove from the oven.  Once cooled, remove the pastry shells from the moulds and set aside.
For the filling you will need
1 tin of condense milk
Half a cup of lemon juice
1 tub (175ml) cream stiffly beaten
Method
Add the lemon juice to the condense milk in a bowl and mix well.  Add the stiffly beaten cream and once all combined fill each pastry casing with the mixture.  Place in the fridge for 1-2 hours and allow to set

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Taste of Durban 2014

The Pick n Pay Taste of Durban is back from Friday 25 to Sunday 27 July at Suncoast Casino & Entertainment World (Suncoast). Chefs from nine of Durban’s top restaurants will create special menus of starter-sized dishes, including their signature dishes, designed to reflect their individual philosophies, whilst showcasing seasonal and premium ingredients. Taste of Durban 2014 promises to be the most exciting ‘foodie’ event of the year.

I am giving away 5 double tickets to this spectacular annual event. To win a pair of these tickets, all you have to do is answer the following easy question: What is one of THE most popular attractions at this amazing event? Type your answer into the comments block with your name and cell number and you could be chosen as one of my lucky winners…….

Salmon fish cakes from Havanna Grill (www.havanagrill.co.za)

Salmon fish cakes from Havanna Grill (www.havanagrill.co.za)

Marcelle Roberts from Café 1999 is back for the third-year running with her inimitable brand of casual cuisine. Louise Potgieter from Havana Grill at Suncoast and Themba Mngoma from Little Havana. Newcomer Nardia Adams, from Asian Tapas spot Greedy Buddha, will be cooking up a storm on the grill with Lucy Markewicz flying the colours for Freedom Café. Popular Indian restaurant Amaravathi Palki, Market, Beluga Durban, Vigour & Verve and excitingnew addition to the line-up this year, The Durban eKasi Experience, brings the total of participating restaurants to nine.

At the Asara stand, I had the choice of an assortment of chocolate or a burger.........you don't have to guess what I chose

At the Asara stand, I had the choice of an assortment of chocolate or a burger………you don’t have to guess what I chose

Over three days, this unique international restaurant festival will bring together Durban’s most dedicated and sophisticated foodies in an

al fresco, dining celebration. Visitors will have the opportunity to sip, sample and shop their way around the festival.  This year’s show offers a range of brand new features and culinary experiences, to ensure that there is something for everybody to enjoy.

“We are thrilled with the wide range of restaurants, features and suppliers we have participating in Taste of Durban this year,” says Event Director, Justine Drake. “The event is growing year on year and we are excited at the prospects of a bumper turnout in 2014.”

‘Must-do’s’ include:

_          One of the show’s most popular attractions, the Pick n Pay Fresh Living Chef’s Theatre, where top chefs showcase their culinary skills in fun and informative cooking demonstrations, culinary challenges and entertaining Q & A sessions.

-           The Pick n Pay Wine and Canapé Experience, is an interactive area where guests will learn how to create simple, stylish and delicious canapés, while being instructed by wine experts on how to pair each canapé with a wide range of wines to complement the balance of flavours.

The LINDT Master Chocolatiers will be hand making delicious LINDOR truffles and fresh pralines, as well as selling their delectable EXCELLENCE and CREATION slabs and a variety of LINDOR balls. Come and enjoy the finest LINDT chocolate that melts in your mouth and gently caresses all your senses.

-          Castle Milk Stout Experience – Castle Milk Stout will bring a taste experience to be savoured to Taste of Durban 2014. Chill out in the marquee and lounge area, complete with the ambient sounds and a tasting experience that shows the full credentials of the full and complex flavours of Milk Stout and its pairing with food.

-          Robertson’s Butcher’s Block in association with Big Green Egg - A gastro theatre dedicated to all things meaty. Chef Craig Elliot and Celebrity Butcher Caroline McAnn will collaborate with local butchers to harness Robertsons 90 years of sourcing and blending spices. Your braai will never be the same again as you create a Robertsons Combination that comes alive in these versatile rubs. All dishes will be prepared in The Big Green Egg, which rethinks the South African braai, uses the ancient clay cooking technique ‘Kamado’. Featuring in the Butcher’s Block is Certified Karoo Meat of Origin- mutton and lamb which is guaranteed to be free range, fully traceable from the Karoo region, free from added hormones and routine antibiotics

-          BP Wild Bean Café - Two millions cups of Wild Bean Café coffee are sold and enjoyed every year. BP Wild Bean Cafés use only 100% top-quality Arabic beans – sourced from Tanzania, Gautemala, El Salvador and Brazil – offering the best combination of sweetness, acidity and bitterness. At Taste of Durban, our Wild Bean Café Baristas will hand-make your favourite coffee, latte or hot chocolate to perk you up and keep you going!

-          The CTA Benefit Stage - The social responsibility initiative, Cape Town Angels, has teamed up with the organisers of Taste Festivals South Africa to bring a coast-to-coast charity challenge to Durbanites. They will host the all-new Call to Action (CTA) Benefit Stage, where a line-up of local artists will entertain by donating their time and talent as an act of active volunteerism. In doing so, they will call foodies to do the same by challenging them to support local charities showcased at the event with their own time and talent donations. One such organisation will be the KZN Branch of ASSITEJ SA, a NPO aimed at transforming society through children’s theatre and so “changing the world one child at a time”

Besides the amazing range of restaurants, suppliers from around the country are pulling out all the stops to make this show a feast for every visitor. Black Mamba Chili will have their fiery gourmet chili product range on offer, while visitors looking for something sweet will love crowd favourite’s Kupcake Heaven and the amazing creations from CakeLab. Meat lovers can look forward to a range of delicious cured meats from father and son team Col’tempo Salumeria.

Bringing a taste of the Cape to our sub-tropical shores, some of the country’s best wineries will showcase their award-winning wines – Idiom Wines, Hermanuspietersfontein, Orange River Estate, Thelema Mountain Vineyards, Waterford Wine Estate, Welgemeend Wine Estate, Wildekrans Wine Estate and Stellenbosch Vineyards.

Visitors will be spoilt for choice with the delicious range of frozen, authentic ready-made drinks from Original Iced Cocktails. An essential stop for all Whisky “fundi’s” is the Aficionados stand, to sample the critically acclaimed Balblair and Kavalan single malt whiskies.

EARLY BIRD OFFER – VALID UNTIL 3 JULY!

The following Early Bird discounts apply for Standard and Premium tickets up until the 3July:

-           Early Bird Standard Entry – *R50 – Entrance to the festival including a glass
(save R30)

-          Early Bird Premium Ticket – *R150 – Entrance to the festival

including a tasting glass plus R100 worth of Scoins (the official

currency)
*save R30

-          DStv Clubhouse Ticket- R685 – entry to the festival, a free tasting

glass, R150 Scoins, a private clubhouse to use as a base for the show with a complimentary bar service (wine, malt and soft drinks) plus a Taste of Durban Gift.

Taste of Durban Festival SCOINS

The South African Gold Coin Exchange is the official sponsor of the festival currency, Scoins. Scoins can be purchased at the festival from the Taste Bank or Scoin Sellers walking around the festival grounds. Visitors use Scoins to purchase sample dishes and drinks from the various exhibiting restaurants, bars and exhibitors. Each Scoin is worth R5. Change is offered in Scoins only.

To book tickets: Visit ITickets on www.itickets.co.za or Pick n Pay tickets on www.pnptickets.co.za

 

Media Enquiries: Joanne Hayes, Tumbleweed Communications

Cell: 083 6277249     e-mail: tigerjo@iafrica.com

                                                                                                           

 

TASTE OF DURBAN 2014 – FAST FACTS

What, Where, When, How…

Festival times:

-           Friday 25 July: 18h00 – 22h00

-           Saturday 26 July: 12h30 – 16h30; 18h00- 22h00

-           Sunday 27 July: 12h30 – 17h30

Tickets:

Tickets are limited and booking is recommended – for further information and bookings visit ITickets on www.itickets.co.za or Pick n Pay tickets on www.pnptickets.co.za

-           Standard Ticket – *R80 – Entrance to the festival including a glass

-          Premium Ticket – *R180 – Entrance to the festival including a

tasting glass plus R100 worth of Scoins (the official currency)

Taste Clubhouse Presented by DStv Ticket - R685 – entry to the festival, a free tasting glass, R150 Scoins, a private clubhouse to use as a base for the show with a complimentary bar service (wine, malt and soft drinks) plus a Taste of Durban Gi

Coconut Truffles

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Every “banter” needs a low carb treat every now and then.  These golden coconut beauties are just that.  Not too many though……….

Ingredients:
250 ml desiccated coconut
50ml organic raw Xylitol (@PicknPay or @dischem)
20ml Maizena (7g of carbs per 15ml)
1 egg
5ml almond or vanilla essence
Pinch of salt

Method:
Combine all ingredients to form a thick paste.  Roll into bite size balls, place on a baking tray (greased), flatten slightly with the back of a spoon and bake in a pre – heated oven of 180*C for 10-15 minutes.

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