Thursday, July 12, 2012

120705 Main Ingredient's MENU - Taj Expressions of Stellenbosch tasting & dinner, Hot dogs at On a Roll, Moussaka recipe, Portuguese varietal tasting, Events, Restaurant specials, Wine courses , cooking classes, etc


Main Ingredient’s weekly E-Journal
Gourmet Foods, Ingredients & Fine Wines
Eat In Guide’s Outstanding Outlet Award Winner from 2006 to 2010
+27 21 439 3169 / +27 83 656 4169
Click on underlined and Bold words to open links to pictures, blogs, websites or more information

Winter vineyards near Stellenbosch
In this week’s MENU:
*     Products
*     Our market activities
*     Taj Expressions of Stellenbosch tasting & dinner
*     Hot dogs at On a Roll
*     Moussaka recipe
*     Portuguese varietal tasting
*     Events and Restaurant specials
*     Wine courses & cooking classes
Products We are always looking for new products to enhance your cooking and dining experience. To see what we have available for you, you can access our product list and see pictures in our website. If you can’t find what you need, let us know and we will try to find it for you. Until our online shop is ready, drop us an email and we will help you. We are very happy to see that traffic on our website is increasing and more orders are coming from it.
We have a lot of fun putting MENU together each week and, of course, doing the things we write about, but making it possible for you to enjoy rare and wonderful gourmet foods is what drives our business. We stock a good range of ingredients and delicious ready-made gourmet foods. You can contact us by email or phone, or through our website. We can send your requirements to you anywhere in South Africa.
Our market activities Come and visit us at the Old Biscuit Mill’s wonderfully exciting, atmospheric Neighbourgoods Market, as always, this Saturday and every Saturday between 09h00 and 14h00. Tip: Some visitors tell us how they struggle to find parking. It’s quite easy if you know how. Click here for a map which shows where we park. We will be back at Long Beach Mall tomorrow, Friday 6th July from 09h00 to 16h00We look forward to seeing you there.
Taj Hotel Expressions of...     We will remind you again near the end of this month about these really great free wine tastings held at the Taj hotel in their foyer. The next one, Expressions of Wellington Walker Bay, Elim & Bot River, will be on the 26th of July. What else have you got to do between 5.30 and 7 30 pm on a Thursday evening but taste good wines? You can book for a delicious dinner with wine afterwards, but it is not obligatory and all the wines you taste will be on sale at farm prices, which is a huge incentive, and saves you the trip to the farm. The dinners are great fun and you might get to sit with a wine maker or representative. This week, we had Janice Anderson, the chef from 96 Winery Road, cooking for us. The wines came from the Helderberg, Stellenbosch Berg and Banhoek areas. If you want to see what we had for dinner and the atmosphere at the wine tasting, click here
Hot dogs at On a Roll     Pete and Debbie Ayub of Sense of Taste invited us to visit their Hot dog restaurant On a Roll on Saturday evening and we really enjoyed the retro flavour of this fun place. Crazy rock and roll music accompanies your hot dog with great fries and three sauces. They want to stick to their guns and keep the menu featuring great hot dogs. Do go and try soon. They do cater for parties and it looks like a great space to have a retro 50’s party. You can contact them on 021 685 9916. If you want to see what we ate and what On a Roll looks like, click here.
We have a dream of perhaps going to Greece some time this year – maybe, if time allows, and the budget. Lynne has been many times, John has not yet visited this end of the Mediterranean and needs to. Looking on-line at pictures of lovely places reminded Lynne that we have not eaten Moussaka for a very long time, so she made the following recipe. It is not difficult to prepare and is one of those dishes that you can bury in the oven and walk away and then reheat the rest next day when it will taste even better. You are supposed to use lamb mince but you can get away with cheaper beef mince, even though it is not authentic. You may also use sliced potatoes.
3T olive oil – 3 large aubergine, sliced 1 cm thick - 1 large onion, finely chopped - 3 garlic cloves, crushed - 900g lean minced lamb - 50ml white or red wine - 400g can chopped tomatoes or tomato passata - cinnamon stick x 5cm – 5g ground allspice - 2 T fresh chopped oregano - salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the savoury béchamel custard on top
75g butter - 75g plain flour - 600ml pint milk – 1 bay leaf - 50g finely grated kefalotyri or parmesan cheese - 2 medium eggs, beaten
Salt the aubergine slices well and leave them to weep for at last half an hour. This removes any bitterness. Rinse off the salt and dry them well.
Fry the onion in a little oil till soft, then add the garlic and continue to fry till they start to brown. Stir in the mince and brown it. Then add the wine and allow to bubble for a minute to boil off the alcohol. Then add the tomato, oregano and spices and simmer, covered for about 45 minutes. Do watch this and add a little water if it looks like it is drying out. Taste and season. Remove the cinnamon stick.
Fry the aubergine slices in a fairly hot pan in the oil until they are nicely golden brown on both sides and getting soft.
Make the custard sauce by melting the butter in a pan then adding the flour and cook together for a minute or two, slowly pour in the milk, add the bay leaf and mix till you have a good sauce. Add the cheese, taste and then season. Or put the milk flour, bay leaf and butter into a deep glass bowl, put in the microwave and pulse at 30 second intervals on full power, stirring between each until you have a good sauce. Remove the bay leaf. Allow sauce to cool slightly then stir in the beaten eggs.
Layer the aubergines and mince in a square casserole dish (about 2.75 litre capacity), top with the custard and put into a 180°C oven for half an hour. Slice and serve. This is wonderful served with a classic Greek salad.
Portuguese varietal Wine tasting     We needed to find a theme in a hurry when the member of our wine club, who was to present at this month’s tasting, had to drop out. You may remember that we attended awards events recently when port producers received recognition for their efforts. At the Cape Port Producers’ Association Port & Wine Awards at Muratie, we tasted a number of very good wines made from Port varietals like Touriga Nacional, Tinta Barocca and Souzão and we decided to use these as a theme. We spoke to a few generous winemakers and Margaux Nel of BoplaasPeter Bayly, Mike Neebe of Axe Hill and Pierre Wahl of Rijk’s all provided suitable examples. We added a few elderly bottles from our cellar. We presented the first five wines blind and asked our club’s members to try and identify the theme from the aromas of the wines. We had picked up Port nuances when we first tasted the wines. There were numerous suggestions, but the “exotic” nature of the aromas was a mystery to all but one taster. The wines we tasted were Axe Hill Machado 2011 (Touriga Nacional, Shiraz, Tinta Barocca).  Boplaas 2011 Tinta Chocolat (Tinta Barocca), Peter Bayly III 2011 (Touriga Nacional, Souzão, Tinta Barocca), Rijk's Tinta Amarela bush vine  2011 Barrel sample, Boplaas Tinta Barocca 2009, Boplaas Touriga Nacional 2008, Boplaas Ring of Rocks 2007 (Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Touriga Nacional), Die Krans Tinta Barocca 2000, Rust en Vrede Tinta Barocca 1989 and Boplaas Cape Tawny (Tinta Barocca, Souzão, Touriga Nacional) which was non vintage, but had a sticker to say we had acquired it in 2000. The Axe Hill, Boplaas Ring of Rocks and Boplaas Tawny port were the highest rated, with average scores of 16.5. The Ring of Rocks was particularly elegant and deserves its 4 Platter stars. The 1989 Rust en Vrede was still holding up quite well, but should not have been kept any longer. The 2000 Die Krans was described in the 2002 John Platter as having “Granny’s cupboard smells. They were still evident. The Boplaas Tawny Port was a delight; thank goodness we have another bottle in the cellar. Find it and buy it; the current offering is a Platter 5 star at a very reasonable price. Several people were disappointed to learn that the Rijk’s Tinta Amarela was made in a small quantity to be used in blending and would not be available for them to buy. The important part of this exercise was not to catch people out, but to take them out of their comfort zones and encourage them to apply their minds to what they were tasting. Also important was that we all enjoyed the experience.
There is a huge and rapidly growing variety of interesting things to occupy your leisure time here in the Western Cape. There are so many interesting things to do in our world of food and wine that we have made separate list for each month for which we have information. To help you choose an event to visit, click on our Events Calendar. All the events are listed in date order and we already have a large number of exciting events to entertain you right through the year. Click here to access the CalendarYou will need to be connected to the internet.
Learn about wine and cooking We have had a lot of enquiries from people who want to learn more about wineCathy Marston and The Cape Wine Academy both run wine education courses, some very serious and others more geared to fun. You can see details here.
Chez Gourmet in Claremont has a programme of cooking classes. A calendar of their classes can be seen here. Pete Ayub, who makes our very popular Prego sauce, runs evening cooking classes at Sense of Taste, his catering company in Maitland. We can recommend them very highly, having enjoyed his seafood course. Check his programme here.
Restaurant Special offers. Some more restaurants have responded to our request for an update of their special offers and we have, therefore, updated our list of restaurant special offersClick here to access it. These Specials have been sent to us by the restaurants or their PR agencies. We have not personally tried all of them and their listing here should not always be taken as a recommendation from ourselves. If they don’t update us, we can’t be responsible for any inaccuracies in the list. When we have tried it, we’ve put in our observations. We have cut out the flowery adjectives etc. that so many have sent, to give you the essentials. Click on the name to access the relevant website. All communication should be with the individual restaurants.

5th July 2012

Remember - if you can’t find something, we’ll do our best to get it for you, and, if you’re in Cape Town or elsewhere in the country, we can send it to you! Check our product list for details and prices.
PS If a word or name is in bold type and underlined, click on it for more information
Phones: +27 21 439 3169 / 083 229 1172 / 083 656 4169
Postal address: 60 Arthurs Rd, Sea Point 8005
Our Adamastor & Bacchus© tailor-made Wine, Food and Photo tours take small groups (up to 6) to specialist wine producers who make the best of South Africa’s wines. Have fun while you learn more about wine and how it is made! Tours can be conducted in English, German, Norwegian or Dutch flavoured Afrikaans.
Recommendations of products and outside events are not solicited or charged for, and are made at the authors’ pleasure. All photographs, recipes and text used in these newsletters are ©John & Lynne Ford, Adamastor & Bacchus. Our restaurant reviews are usually unsolicited. We prefer to pay for our meals and not be paid in any way by anyone. Whether we are invited or go independently, we don’t feel bad if we say we didn’t like it. Honesty is indeed our best policy. While every effort is made to avoid mistakes, we are human and they do creep in occasionally, for which we apologise. Our Avast! ® Anti-Virus software is updated at least daily and our system is scanned continually for viruses.
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