Tag Archives: Cape Town

Overview of Showcook’s Crème de la Crème Event

Annette Kesler and Chania Morritt-Smith of Showcook.com are both dedicated and keenly focused on promoting South Africa’s Great Chefs, Good food & products, the hospitality, culinary, and travel industry.

At their recent Crème de la Crème event held at Overture Restaurant on the Hidden Valley wine estate, Showcook showcased four exceptional chefs; Rudi Liebenberg, from The Mount Nelson, John Jackson, representing the Royal Malewani and the Royal Portfolio Collection, Luke Dale-Roberts of The Test Kitchen and The Pot Luck Club, and Bertus Basson, entrepreneur and patron of Overture restaurant.

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Above Photograph, left to right Chef Rudi Liebenberg- The Mount Nelson. Chef John Jackson The Royal Malewani & Royal Portfolio. Chef Luke Dale- Roberts, The Test Kitchen. Chef Bertus Basson, patron to Overture Restaurant.

These four well known and respected Chefs are without a doubt passionate about good food, and good produce, preferably organic, seasonal and sustainably produced. They are wonderful mentors who constantly give back to the industry they love so very much.

The venue for the event, Overture Restaurant, was graciously hosted for the day by David Hidden; winemaker, entrepreneur and owner of the Hidden Valley wine estate and restaurant. The day was perfect and the surrounding vistas magnetically beautiful.

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A five course collaborative menu was planned, each chef preparing one of the featured dishes on the menu with the exception of the cheese and dessert, the latter both relegated to one of the chefs. Each dish was suitably paired with the chef’s wine of choice, each selected from a different wine estate; namely Plaisir de Merle, Neethlingshof, Lomond, Allesverloren, and Uitkyk.

The Menu

Reading through the five course menu it was clear that the guests would be thoroughly indulged and pampered, and they were. The chefs’ dishes were well thought through, skilfully prepared, a wine perfectly matched to each course, and each dish beautifully presented.

The Food

Starter Soup & Main Course

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Paired with these wines

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The starter– prepared by Chef Rudi Liebenberg:

Baby beetroot & spiced cured salmon: The starter looked like a plate of beautiful bright jewels and tasted as good as it looked. The wine paired with this course was Plaisir de Merle Sauvignon Blanc.

The soup- prepared by Chef John Jackson:

Royal Malewane grown New Zealand Spinach and Gruyere with crisp Parma ham and parmesan tuille: paired with Neethlingshof Gewürztraminer which matched the bright and peppery flavour of the soup superbly; quite delicious, beautifully presented.

Main course – prepared by Chef Luke Dale-Roberts:

Crisp fried Pork Belly and Sous vide Fillet, pan seared scallop with garlic and roasted ginger puree served with a bourbon velouté: paired with a choice of the following wines: Lomond Sugarbush, Lomond Snowbush or Allesverloren Tinta Barocca. The pork was unctuous and melt-in-your-mouth tender.

Cheese course – prepared by Chef Bertus Basson:

Huguenot Cheddar, mulled apple, and apple sorbet: an interesting soupçon of flavours, paired with a lovely Allesverloren Fine Old Vintage.

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Dessert – prepared by Chef Bertus Basson:

Apricot Soufflé served with salted almond ice cream: paired with Uitkyk 10 year old Estate Brandy Grand Reserve, a perfect choice and a nice balance to the sweetness of the soufflé.

Wine, Water, & Food

All the beautiful wines which we sampled and enjoyed with our meals were sponsored by Cape Legends; all the wonderful water by La Vie de Luc and the meat by the Western Cape Pork Producers.

Gifts too

Apart from the good food and wine, the guest also received gifts of chocolate from vonGEUSAU and a bottle of Neethlingshof Maria Noble Late Harvest Weisser Riesling, the latter sponsored by Cape Legends, a lovely and appreciated treat.

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And Amazing Prizes

But that’s not all; between courses and the delightful and informative speeches delivered by Annette Kesler of Showcook.com and Garth Stroebel of SA Chefs Academy, there were amazing sponsored prizes to be won; and who would not be wonderfully pleased to receive the following prizes; Tea for Two at the Mount Nelson –sponsor, The Mount Nelson,  winner Penny Haw Business Day. A beautiful pair of earrings, sponsor Uwe Koetter Jewellers, winner Barbara Lenhard of Opulent Living.  An overnight stay for two at ‘La Residence’ in Franschoek, sponsor- The Royal Malewani & The Royal Portfolio, winner Tessa Purdon, Media 24, and the grand prize a trip for two to Mauritius,  sponsor – Long Beach, Sugar Beach, Le Touessrok and Air Mauritius, in association with World Leisure Holidays, – winner Chef Bertus Basson.

Conclusion

The Crème de la Crème event was well supported by people interested and dedicated toward promoting South Africa’s food, produce & products, hospitality, leisure and travel industry. It goes without saying; this was another successful event from the Showcook.com team.

The Cape Winter, A Tart & and Guests For Dinner

There are four of us for supper tonight and the weather is icy and blowing, so good comfort food is in order. Shopping is usually slipped into other jobs and journeys: a dash into the green grocer’s whilst on my way to a meeting; a trip to the fishmonger on my way home. But today’s shopping is thought out, with a list, a big bag and a planned shopping experience for my guests.

One of the advantages of the free range birds from the butcher is that their bones are heavy and strong; to be expected as they have had a lot of opportunity to exercise; so one of these birds it is. Their fat, sauce-enriching bones make a delicious stew. Cooked slowly, with stock, herbs and aromatics, the result is mild but meaty, which is just what one wants when the cold weather and wind is enough to make your eyes water.

As I am well stocked with limes, I had planned on making a lime tart but now seeing the fresh Cape gooseberries I find myself in a quandary; gooseberry crumble, or the lime tart? A quick rethink of the dinner plan for tonight and tomorrow, scrambles through my head. I will do both, the lime tart for today and the gooseberry crumble tomorrow.

I pick up a nice country loaf of bread, organic cream, milk and eggs and head for home, my guests plod off to explore Cape Town. Considering the gale force winds blowing outside I think there could be better days for exploring than today.

The wind almost rips the door from my grasp as I make my way into the kitchen from outside, while hugging my purchases tightly to prevent them from being blown in all directions, I’m pleased that I passed on the opportunity to buy fresh flowers as they would have come off second best in these conditions.

The kitchen is lovely and toasty, a perfect day to be inside baking and preparing food. After a quick warming cup of tea I check on my cannellini beans which have been soaking for a few hours, all is looking good and now it’s time to start preparing the lime tart. I enjoy making this particular pastry, each time adding as much butter as I dare, just to see how crisp and fragile I can get the crust.

I have prepared all the ingredients for the filling; all that is needed is the final mixing of all the items together. The crust is pre-baked, looks great and is ready to receive the filling which I proceed to do. All goes smoothly with the mixing of the ingredients when suddenly the wind tears several branches from the palm trees, heaving them across the courtyard with a vengeance, and in my direction.

Somewhat distracted at this point, I put the tart and it’s filling into the oven, as I am about to close the oven door I realize I have forgotten one important ingredient, the lime juice. I quickly pour the juice gently into the liquid filling already in the tart, stir and distribute it as best I can while trying not to disturb the pastry base. Fingers crossed I close the oven door and hope for the best.

A little flustered I think of plan B, not to mention think about clearing the debris from the courtyard, it is going to be a long 45 minutes.

It’s time to check the tart. I give it a little shake to test if it is sufficiently set, there should still be a slight wobble to the custard; it is set just the way I like it and it looks perfect. The quick thinking and unorthodox approach to the lime custard filling actually worked. The tart was saved.

With the tart baked and the chicken slowly cooking and doing what it should, I have time to catch up on chores, get through a bit of my work backlog and I find time to relax before dinner is ready to serve.

Recipe for the well-deserved lime tart

Lime tart 2011 blog kate abbott

Lime Tart

Serves 8

Ingredients

For the filling

180ml lime juice

6 large eggs

250g castor sugar

175ml double cream

For the pastry

175g plain flour

40g icing sugar

90g cold butter, diced

2 egg yolks

1 tablespoon cold water

Method

To make the pastry, put the flour and icing sugar into a food processor, add the butter and blitz for a few seconds until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Mix in the egg yolks and the water. Blitz for a few more seconds until the dough comes together. Gently shape into a log, wrap in greaseproof paper and pop into the fridge for half an hour. If you skip this bit the pastry will shrink.

Next, cut thin rounds from the pastry and press into a loose-bottom 23-24cm tart tin, pressing the pastry gently up the sides and over the base. Make sure that there are no holes or cracks; otherwise you will lose your filling. Prick lightly with a fork and refrigerate for half an hour.

Set oven to 200∘C. Place a sheet of greaseproof paper in the tart tin case, fill with baking beans and bake for ten minute. Remove the beans and bake for a further five, until the pastry is dry to the touch.

Turn the oven down to 150∘C; finely grate the zest from two limes. Squeeze enough limes to give 180ml juice; this could be anything from 6 to 8 limes depending on the size and ripeness.

Mix the eggs and sugar together, beating lightly for a few seconds, it should not be frothy, and then stir in the lime juice and cream.

Pour the mixture through a sieve, stir in the lime zest and pour into the baked pastry case. Bake for about 45-50 minutes. Remove the tart while the filling is still slightly wobbly and leave to cool.