Friday, August 10, 2012

2nd August 2012 Main Ingredient's MENU -Taj Expressions dinner, GetWine, Decanting and aerating wine, Duck liver parfait, Products, Our market activities, 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

A view, from Protea Hill farm’s hilltop, of Quoin Rock wine estate, which is back on the market

In this week’s MENU:
*     Products
*     Our market activities
*     Taj Expressions dinner
*     GetWine
*     Decanting and aerating wine
*     Duck liver parfait
*     Events and Restaurant specials
*     Wine courses & cooking classes
To tell the whole story here would take too much space, so click on underlined and Bold words in the text to open links to pictures, blogs, websites or more information
This week’s Product menu     Winter brings out our love of comfort food and we have seen an increase in demand for duck confit, usually destined for cassoulets and other warming dishes. We also have ready-made cassoulets, garbure and other traditional south-western French delicacies, if you prefer to heat and eat. Our French patés are also moving well and we have restocked this week. The delicious Labeyrie duck rillette is back on the table. Chestnuts have been slow movers since Christmas, but we have a sudden surge in interest, so we have sold out and restocked. Perfect for stuffings, we have jars of French chestnuts with mushrooms and onions. And, of course, the right condiments make the good even better. Our range of Edmond Fallot mustards from Beaune is selling almost as fast as we can replace the stock. Fallot is the last producer of stone-ground mustard in France; the mustards are strong and full of flavour. We have tasters, so try them when you come to see us at one of the markets. Truffles continue to be popular and truffle salt and truffle oils (white and black) are steady movers. We have new stock of the very popular southern and eastern Mediterranean spices: ras el hanout (an essential ingredient in Moroccan dishes like tagine) and za’atar and sumac, which are so important in dishes from Lebanon, Israel and other countries in the Levant. We collected more of the ever popular Portuguese Prego sauce from Sense of Taste this afternoon.
To see what else 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 3rd August from 09h00 to 16h00We look forward to seeing you there. Come and join us after the market at WineStyle’s Winter Wine Party at Simon's restaurant on Groot Constantia estate.  Check our Events Calendar for details.
Taj dinner     This month’s Expressions of Walker Bay/Overberg, Elim & Bot River dinner in Mint Restaurant at the Taj was probably the best yet. The wines on display which impressed were many: Genevieve MCC Brut, Bouchard Finlayson’s Missionvale Chardonnay, Beaumont’s Hope Marguerite Chenin blanc, Gabrielskloof Red  and Magdalena white blends, Strandveld Sauvignon Blanc, Luddite Shiraz, Newton Johnson’s Family Pinot Noir, and Sumaridge Epitome. Several of these were paired with the dinner and all worked extremely well, especially Beaumont’s Noble Late Goutte D’Or. We tasted these lovely wines in the foyer first – it was great to see a few of you who’d been enticed there after reading last week’s MENU - then sat down for dinner in Mint restaurant . The chef was Duane Lewis of Grootbos Private Nature Reserve, whose food we have not had before. If this is any indication, we will be making a reservation there next time we are in the area; we loved it all. He used great restraint, while using good local ingredients, and showed major cooking skills. The dishes were all, without exception, delicious and the meal was not too rich and overblown. If you want to see what we ate and drank, click here.
GetWine in Harrington Street is one of our sources of good, reasonably priced wine for regular drinking. Because of the times, they do have a splendid collection of older vintages from good labels at very good prices. On Friday, we were invited to their open tasting held, this time, on Daria wine farm in Durbanville and, after tasting through the 18 plus wines open for degustation, we bought a case each of Steen op Hout Chenin blanc from Mulderbosch and Thelema Sutherland Chardonnay. Good value. Go and have a look and get on their mailing list for the next open tasting.
This year’s Die Burger Proefees Wine Festival was held at the Tyger Valley Shopping Centre this year and was very well organised by Posy and Jeremy Hazell.  We had a great time on Friday afternoon, tasting wines from all over the place, seeing some rather strange imported wines that were a little more like cool drink than wine and enjoying the chat with members of the wine trade. It was not filled with imbibing students and we hope that it was a great success for them.
SHOULD YOU DECANT WINE OR....     Our wine club’s tasting this month was another where the bounds of our knowledge were pushed and it was very interesting. Fellow member John Coetzee, who organised the meeting, has bought himself a Vinturi wine aerator and he brought along three wines from Buitenverwachting: a 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon, a 1999 Merlot and a 2009 Cabernet Franc. He then aerated a bottle of each, decanted a bottle of each (about 40 hours before the tasting) and served one freshly opened. We tasted each one blind in each of these three expressions, and were asked to score them. It was really amazing how different they all were. We had to guess the varietals, their age, the area they came from and then whether the wine was aerated, decanted or not touched at all. Without exception everyone preferred the wines that had either been aerated or decanted, even though opinions of which process was better varied from wine to wine. So it seems that if you have a good red wine, you do need to give it some air and some love to get the best out of it. We just wished that the Merlot was still available but the 2006 and 2007 vintage Cabernet sauvignon and 2007 Cabernet franc are and they can be bought from the farm. We really recommend that you do, they are wonderful. The 2009s (possibly the best vintage ever in this country) will be available in a year or two, so patience is a requirement. Thank you very much Hermann Kirschbaum, whose generosity made the tasting possible.
Recipe     Lynne found that Woolworths are now selling fresh duck livers and this prompted this week’s recipe as she had to make something to take to our wine club. Interestingly Woolworths are selling these livers beautifully cleaned and ready for cooking. The pate was absolutely delicious so we thought we should share it with you. Great for a special occasion and not that expensive to make as the livers are R19.95 for 250g. Shallots are now appearing in most of the supermarkets. You can use a small onion but shallots are much sweeter and less harsh so do use them if you can.
Duck Liver Parfait
50g butter 1 shallot, thinly sliced– 1 garlic clove, sliced - 250g cleaned duck livers–1 T brandy – 1 T port – salt and freshly ground black pepper – 3 sprigs of thyme, chopped - 1 small sprig of rosemary, chopped -1 bay leaf – 100 ml cream - grating of nutmeg – 20g melted butter, a sprig of thyme and a small bay leaf
Make sure your livers have been cleaned and all sinews cut away. If you have the time, soak them in a little milk for at least an hour or overnight, then drain and use.
Fry the shallot and the garlic in 20g of the butter until they are soft, add the chopped herbs and bay leaf, the nutmeg and cook for one minute more. Then add the duck livers. Fry gently until they are just browned on all sides. Stir in the brandy and port and simmer for a couple of minutes to reduce the liquid. Allow to cool slightly. Remove the bay leaf and put the mixture into a liquidiser. Add the rest of the butter and the cream and blitz. Taste to adjust seasoning at this point. Push the mixture through a fine sieve. This is very important; it gives the characteristic smooth and silky texture to the paté. Put into an attractive serving dish. Put the sprig of thyme and the bay leaf on the top and then drizzle over the clear melted butter. Refrigerate and serve when set. It will keep for 2 days in the fridge. This is wonderful on a rich bread like brioche or kitke or good crisp biscuits. It is also something you can use in your Beef Wellington or Tournedos Rossini. Serve with a good Noble Late Harvest wine or bubbly.
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.

2nd August 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.
This electronic journal has been sent to you because you have personally subscribed to it or because someone you know has asked us to send it to you or forwarded it to you themselves. Addresses given to us will not be divulged to any person or organisation. We collect them only for our own promotional purposes and keep our mailing list strictly confidential. If you wish to be added to our mailing list, please click here to send us a message and if you wish to be removed from our mailing list, please click here to send us a message.

No comments: