Snap, Sizzle & Cook

Sharing my love of food

Cinnamon Coffee hot water sponge cake

Until now I have never baked with a combination of cinnamon and coffee. I can however understand the “meant-to-be-together” union between these two warm, wintery ingredients. Both elements exude a homely, inviting smell as they merge in the warmth of the oven. The end result is a delectable and delicious addition to an afternoon cuppa.
Cinnamon Coffee hot water sponge cake
You will need:
3 eggs separated
250ml castor sugar
375ml cake flour
1ml salt
5ml ground cinnamon
2ml ground nutmeg
30ml butter or oil
125ml strong black coffee
15ml baking powder

A lovely soft spongy cake

A lovely soft spongy cake

625ml sifted icing sugar
50ml soft butter
2ml ground cinnamon
5ml instant coffee powder
50ml milk
Whisk egg yolks and sugar until thick and pale. Sift together salt, flour and spices. Add to egg yolk mixture and beat again. The mixture will be crumbly. Melt the butter in coffee and add to the cake mixture beating until smooth. Fold in the stiffly whisked egg whites and lastly add the baking powder. Pour into 2 x 20cm pre-greased cake tins. Bake at 180 degrees Celsius for 25 – 30 minutes or until a cake skewer comes out clean.
For the icing:
Mix all ingredients together until smooth. Once cooled completely you can proceed to ice the cake.
Thick, creamy butter icing

Thick, creamy butter icing

Hot Milk sponge cake recipe HERE

A Television Kitchen recording studio in Durban

In the words of Chef Justin Quek, “First, knife skills. Then, knowing how to control heat. Most important is choosing the right product… the rest is simple.” – Well that’s what we thought in Durban and perhaps one never knows what’s cooking. Deen TV, Channel 365 on StarSat and 152 on Openview HD is about to inaugurate its brand new television kitchen-recording studio, the channel said in a statement.
Deen TV
The kitchen studio will be home to many cooking and baking television shows in Durban. Durban is home to a unique brand of cuisine and the location could not have been more apt. The Deen TV Kitchen studio is the brainchild of the channel’s Board Chairman, Hassim Jogee, who said that the project was in planning for two years. Jogee said that the broadcaster has reached a milestone by unveiling a high tech kitchen for the use of television productions.
The studio is fitted with the latest designs in kitchen cupboards, appliances and more. The facility was designed with the television audience in mind ensuring the best possible angles capturing all the action as it happens. Jogee added that he wished to thank sponsors like DEFY, KZN Boards, Maharani Tiles, Vawdas Interiors, H. J. Lighting, A. Sathar & Sons, Chatsmain Curtain & Blinds, and Breez Air Conditioners for making the project possible.
Deen TV Image
The new studio sees the inauguration and launch of two brand new shows on Deen TV. What’s Cooking? will showcase the expertise of Chef Ismail Arbee as he takes us on a fun and experimental journey that will unlock your imagination and passion for cooking. The series will cover unique fusion-style dishes.
In a brief Interview Arbee said, “It’s a brand new venture for me and a pure adrenaline rush to be cooking in a studio with cameras all around showing the world what I love to do and sharing my experience with every one and teaching people new cooking techniques”. Some of the dishes that one will see on What’s Cooking? include a Lamb rack with a mint honey and pomegranate reduction served with a sweet potato and parsnip crostini. For fish lovers Arbee will whip up some grilled Sole fish with a lemon garlic and mint coriander sauce served with creamy mushroom and pea barley.
Now we all know a good dessert compliments a good meal. Another series to be filmed in the studio is titled “Simply Desserts”, hosted by renowned pastry chef Zahira Mohamed. Whether you’re skilled, or an amateur at baking, let Chef Zahira Mohamed introduce you to a world of hot and cold desserts with a modern take on your old favourites, as well as over the top creations that are trendy and spectacular. The most elaborate desserts are demonstrated and explained step by step on Simply Desserts so that no one gets left with an empty tummy.
Jogee also took the opportunity of thanking all that that was involved in putting the project together for their hard work, dedication and determination. Deen TV’s Kitchen Studio will film the inaugural episodes of the new series on Thursday the 5th of May 2016. VIPs and members of the media are expected to attend the grand opening event at the channel’s Durban facility – (Deen TV News)
Deen TV 2<

Classics Perfected Launch at Fairmont Zimbali

This article contributed by: Vernon Loker

To the layman, a cocktail is little more than a tasty drink found in up-market restaurants, at plush bars or at other elite gatherings, in which patrons consume liquids fit for a very special occasion.

image courtesy of Fairmont Zimbali

image courtesy of Fairmont Zimbali

However, to the connoisseur, cocktails are hand-crafted brews requiring a delicate touch of blending various flavours of beverages, both natural and alcoholic together with, if called for, exotic spices to round off nothing short of a sensation to the palette. Granted, these drinks are commonly found at special celebrations, but interestingly for me, they also feature when conversations are light and topical at the end of a business day or the gathering of friends and family during a meal at a favourite eating or drinking establishment over the weekend. Fairmont Zimbali’s launch into this dimension of socializing at their Resort on the North Coast of Kwa-Zulu-Natal nearby Ballito has introduced me to this previously unknown world.

image courtesy of Fairmont Zimbali

image courtesy of Fairmont Zimbali

I was recently introduced to this form of social drinking when accompanying my wife to Fairmont Zimbali Resort launch of their exclusive cocktail menu called Classics Perfected.

image courtesy of Fairmont Zimbali

image courtesy of Fairmont Zimbali

image courtesy of Fairmont Zimbali

image courtesy of Fairmont Zimbali

Little was I aware of firstly the training that Mixologists (the title for a master of his/her trade) undergo, together with the painstaking experimentation and recording of cocktail recipes prior to the final product passing the lips of the discerning tippler. Fairmont Hotel’s South African Mixologists have attended specialist training courses with a fortunate few having gained overseas experience to fine-tune their craft.
image courtesy of Fairmont Zimbali

image courtesy of Fairmont Zimbali

I was further intrigued, when given insight, into the flavours that Mixologists are able to produce when blending a cocktail. To successfully combine mint, pomegranate, cucumber, fresh lemon, coconut, plus a variety of other fruits, along with herbs and spices with recognized drinks such as Champagne, Tequila, Vodka, Gin, Cointreau and the likes was the equivalent to introducing me to another universe of drinking pleasure.
Cocktail names such as “Right Word”, “VSOP Boulevardier”, “Veuve Clicqot” had me spell bound.
Of particular interest to me were the demonstrations of the Hotel’s resident Mixologists in the preparation of a cocktail. This at a specially prepared glass counter with colourful lighting, a crystal clear sound system and big screen, all combining to optimize patrons viewing the coming together of the final product.
image courtesy of Fairmont Zimbali

image courtesy of Fairmont Zimbali

My attention was gripped by one of the evening’s Mixologists, Patrick, as he produced his personal creation, Pomegranate Paloma . A cocktail of Patrick’s own engineering and one that hitherto had no equal in the cocktail world. I sat enthralled as he combined pomegranate juice, grapefruit juice, and fresh lemon juice with Angostura bitters. He then added Casamigos Reposado Tequila to Cointreau plus Half kosher salt to the juices and rounded off with a rim of lemon.
In short – a refreshing cocktail and one to warm conversations.
All-in-all, an evening well spent in the company of Fairmont Zimbali’s staff and guests.
image courtesy of Fairmont Zimbali

image courtesy of Fairmont Zimbali

Banting Meatballs

I should really picnic more since it’s such a wonderful outing to enjoy with friends and family plus the added feature of delicious food (and wine).
Banting meatballs
I remember as a young girl doing road trips with my grandparents. We would often make a trip to the beach or visit family who lived inland. My grandfather drove an enormous chocolate brown valiant which was so spacious inside that I could quite comfortably stretch out on the back seat to sleep. My gran always had a delicious assortment of picnic food such as boiled eggs, vetkoek stuffed with savoury mince, meatballs, milktart and her very delicious ginger beer. Picking up from this fond memory, I have made a few picnic friendly foods HERE, HERE and HERE. This particular dish is another favourite to add to the growing list of “mobile” foods.
Because so many people are following the Banting lifestyle, I’ve adapted this recipe to cater for those LCHF (Low Carb, High fat) eaters.
Banting meatballs
You will need:
1 onion (finely diced)
2 medium sized courgettes (grated)
2 cloves garlic, minced
50g grated cheese (you can use any type of cheese)
1 egg plus 1 egg yolk
500g mince (lamb, beef or chicken)
Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 210 degrees Celsius.
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well.
Roll into golf ball size balls and place on a baking tray lined with baking paper
Bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown.
Banting meatballs
Cook’s notes:
Serve with caulimash or courgette noodles.
You can swop the 2 grated courgettes for a cup of grated sweet potato.

Peanut butter and coconut cookies

A debated topic in the running world is the subject of eating breakfast, especially when waking at the crack of dawn on a Saturday morning for a long run.
For me personally I battle to eat so early in the morning yet I know my body needs nourishment to cope with pending hunger pangs and excessive exercise conducive to distance running. I’ve tried many different forms of breakfasts, namely muesli, yoghurt, fruit and protein shakes but these have only left me with extreme cramps and a general sense of feeling uneasy while out on my run.
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Peanut butter has been hailed as one of the favourite food sources for athletes in sustaining satiety. It keeps one full for longer, is full of nutrients and maintains the all important glucose levels. Every runner who has experienced it (including myself) will tell you that “hitting the wall” because of glucose levels crashing is no joke, one’s dignity goes crashing too.
In my endeavor to find the perfect breakfast for those early morning runs, I decided to try a Peanut butter and coconut cookie. Not only is it simple to make, but it’s extremely delicious. You can size them to your own convenience, so putting 2 or 3 into a small packet, carrying in your running shorts for those long runs or when you just can’t eat something so early in the morning is very convenient.
You will need:
3 cups self raising flour
1 cup coconut
½ bottle peanut butter
2 eggs
1 cup sugar
125g butter
Pinch of salt
DSC_0008 (627x418)
Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time and beat well between additions. Add peanut butter to egg mixture and combine well. Add flour, coconut and salt together in separate bowl. Add flour mixture to peanut butter mixture till dough has formed. Roll mixture into small balls and place on a greased oven proof pan. Press lightly with a fork and back in a preheated oven at 180 degrees Celsius for 15-20 minutes.
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Chocolate Cream Pie

Unlike some of my previous recipes, this one is NOT BANTING FRIENDLY!
Despite all the warnings on social media (which I HAVE taken note of) regarding the dangers of sugar consumption and the addiction properties paralleled with that of cocaine, as an avid runner, I personally feel the need to indulge every now and then in something sweet. Not only does my body need it, but deserves it. Besides gulping down a few litres of Energade or Powerade after a long run, I do enjoy a large chunk of cake or pudding every so often. This particular dessert pie is extremely sweet resulting in only a small piece needed to satisfy those sugary cravings.
DSC_0012 (627x418)
You will need:
150g marshmallows
200g milk chocolate
1pkt Romany creams
1 cup cream
1 cup milk
75g butter
1 chocolate flake
Glazed cherries
DSC_0017 (627x418)
Combine marshmallows and milk in a saucepan. Stir until marshmallows have melted. Add chocolate and stir until melted and mixture is smooth. Allow to cool.
Crush Romany Creams and stir in the melted butter. Press into a greased pie dish and chill.
Whip cream and fold into the cooled chocolate mixture. Pour into the prepared crust. Decorate with flake and cherries.
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Tuna Mould

2016-02-16 14.26.24
In my opinion, a can or two of tuna is a store cupboard or pantry necessity. From whipping up a quick tuna salad, tuna pasta or making a tuna quiche, it is an essential ingredient for every home kitchen.  I always ensure I have a few tins in my cupboard for making a meal in a jiffy especially in the hot summer months when you really don’t feel like cooking a hot meal.  This particular recipe is just another way to using a can of tuna.
You will need:
1 can tuna is water
1 tub smooth cottage cheese
1 finely chopped onion
4-5 finely chopped gherkins
Salt and pepper
30ml tomato sauce
6 tsp lemon jelly power (dissolved in about 3 tbsp of boiling water and allow to cool)
Drain tuna and mix together with cottage cheese, onion and gherkin. Add tomato sauce and cooled lemon jelly. Season and pour mixture into a mould and set in the fridge till firm. If you don’t have a mould then just place mixture into a bowl to set in fridge. Turn out onto a platter and garnish. Serve with toast or crackers

Zucchini and Sweet Potato Slices – Banting friendly

This recipe is a fabulous alternative to the usual meal addition of either roast vegetables or salad. What I like about this dish is the convenience of serving it either hot or cold which makes it ideal for a picnic lunch. The zucchini and sweet potato make a perfect pair to be enjoyed whether you are and avid Banter or not.
Zucchini and Sweet Potato Squares
You will need:
6 eggs, lightly beaten
500g Zucchini, finely grated
250g sweet potato, finely grated
1 bunch of spring onions, chopped
salt and freshly ground black pepper
200g grated cheddar cheese
40g grated Parmesan cheese
100ml Coconut oil
5ml dried basil
5ml dried sage
Zucchini and Sweet Potato Squares
Combine eggs, zucchini, sweet potato and spring onions in a large bowl.
Mix together oil, cheeses and herbs
Combine egg and cheese mixtures and stir well.
Pour into a greased ovenproof dish
Bake at 180 degrees Celsius for 30-40 minutes or until mixture is firm to the touch
Remove from oven and cut into squares
Serve hot or cold

Coronation Chicken Salad

If there’s one meal that I like to prepare and just pop in the fridge for “whenever”, it’s a chicken coronation salad. It can be enjoyed as a snack, in between meals or as a complete meal served with homemade bread or a personal favourite of mine, use as a filling for a wrap or pita bread. This particular salad lasts for up to 3 days in the refrigerator.
.Chicken Coronation Salad
You will need:
600g Chicken breasts, cubed
1 onion
30ml olive oil
5ml coriander
2.5ml cumin
10ml medium strength curry powder
60ml seedless raisins
30ml slivered almonds (reserve for last)
1 stick celery, sliced (reserve for last)
125ml original chutney
1 cup mayonnaise (reserve for last)
Salt and pepper (seasoning)
On medium heat, add the olive oil and onions to a pot and sauté for about 3 minutes. Add the cubed chicken breasts, cumin, coriander, curry power, seasoning, chutney and raisins. Stir together and sauté until the chicken is cooked through. If the mixture becomes too sticky, add a half cup of water and stir through. Set aside and allow to cool completely. Add the sliced celery, almonds and mayonnaise and place in a serving bowl and refrigerate until needed
Chicken Coronation Salad

Onion and Cheese Bread

I rely mostly on an image to give me an idea of what the end result of a recipe will be. I love the beautiful food illustrations captured in modern recipe books and magazines, they give me inspiration and of course make my mouth water.
A few years back I was given a batch of recipe books which originate from various Churches in and around Durban. These little recipe books are great in that they are meals directly from a home kitchen. They are someone’s family favourite so they are also very personable. The idea behind these recipe books which are usually for fundraising purposes (School’s have them too) is that each woman who partakes in putting the book together contributes their personal favourite recipe. The downside of these recipe books is that there are no images I guess to save on costs so one is going in “blind” when trying a recipe.
What I’d like to do with all these books is to pick a few recipes, try them and share the successful, no flop ones with you. The first recipe that I am sharing is an easy, 5 ingredient Onion Bread which was so simple to mix together.
For this recipe you will need:
500ml self raising flour (small packet)
1 packet brown onion soup
1 egg
1 carton Inkomazi or buttermilk
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
Mix all ingredients together except the cheese. Place in a small pre greased loaf tin. Sprinkle with the cheese and bake at 180 degrees Celsius for 45 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

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