Thursday, September 19, 2013

130918 Main Ingredient's MENU - 30th Blaauwklippen Blending Competition Awards, Heritage Day, Caramel sauce

Main Ingredient’s weekly E-Journal
Gourmet Foods & Ingredients
Eat In Guide’s Five time Outstanding Outlet Award Winner
+27 21 439 3169 / +27 83 229 1172
Cormorants face the gathering storm
In this week’s MENU:                                
*    30th Blaauwklippen Blending Competition Awards
*    Heritage Day
*    Caramel sauce
Follow this link to see our Main Ingredient blogs, because to tell our whole story here would take too much space. Click on Bold words in the text of this edition to open links to pictures, blogs, pertinent websites or more information. Follow us on Twitter: @mainingmenu
This week’s Product menu: Truffles are the flavour of the moment and truffle related products are bmoving out as fast as we can replenish our stock. Must be the wintry weather! In addition, we continue to receive enquiries for Mediterranean and Middle Eastern products like sumac and za’atar and for Puy lentils, black beans, beluga lentils and other pulses. We do have all of these currently in stock. We surmise many of you are using Ottolenghi cookbooks! Our online shop shows our range of rare and exciting products which you are unlikely to find elsewhere in South Africa. See it here
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.
A relatively quiet week has given us a chance to catch our breath and spend a little time doing essential things around the house and entertain a few friends to a dinner party. Off again tomorrow to Muratie for the Cape Winelands Cooking Challenge, more about which next week.
30th Blaauwklippen Blending Competition Awards     If you are in a wine club that meets regularly, you probably know about this annual completion. If you don’t, be sure to enter your club next year. Or you could use the time in the next year to form your own club. You can get details on the Blaauwklippen web site. For a small charge they send you a box of wine and instructions on what to blend and how to blend it.
We have certainly taken part several times over the years as member of our wine club, the Oenophiles and had great fun doing the blending of the bottles of different Blaauwklippen wines into an acceptable blend for Blaauwklippen to market and sell. One thing it does illustrate very clearly is how complicated and how finite it is to blend wine. We have found that it teaches wine lovers not to be so blasé about the wine they are drinking.
We attended the award ceremony at Blaauwklippen last Friday, where we met all the possible winners, and many of the people responsible for starting this competition, who were really surprised at how quickly the years have gone by. Walter Finlayson, Alan Mullins and Angela Lloyd told us how it had started and how it had evolved over the years to become the success that it is. This year, they decided to create a small side competition and invited all the media to enter their blends and we took part in this, sadly without success. The winners were the Natalia Wine Society from Durban and this is their third time of winning, so these people obviously know what they are doing. Interestingly there are two other clubs who have also won the award three times. The media award was taken by Congratulations to all. Click here to see the photos and what we had for lunch.
Here’s your Heritage Day     Steve Jeffrey of The Charcuterie will be releasing a once off limited release of two unique boerewors’ available on Saturday only at The Neighbourgoods Market. As he says, “To celebrate our national heritage on National Braai Day, what better ingredients than Brandy & Coke and Mrs Ball’s Chutney and Old Brown Sherry!!”
1.    Brandy & Coke with fragrant sweet spice notes and roasted coriander.
  1. Mrs Ball’s Chutney with warm piquant spice notes laden with apricots poached in old Brown Sherry
Their normal range of seven unique fresh sausages will also be available. Come and try and buy.
Special things to do on Heritage Day can be found in our Events Calendar
Recipe      We had a dinner party this week and Lynne made one of our favourite desserts, a classic Tart Tatin. We tried another variation this week and used good apples and a small tin of pineapple rings. Lynne arranged them in the centre with a cherry in each ring. We had this recently at The French Connection and particularly liked the caramel sauce they served with it. It is much easier to make than it seems, if a little risky as making caramel can be hot and dangerous. Just be careful.
Caramel sauce
200g / 1cup white sugar - 90g butter - 120g cream
Put the sugar in a thick bottomed deep pan and cook on medium until it melts. Keep swirling the pan so that the sugar can cook evenly, but do not stir or it will crystallize.
Once the sugar has melted and reached a deep brown colour, move it off the heat and add the butter all at once. It will foam up, so be careful. Stir until it's completely melted into the caramel. Then pour in the cream - it may still be foaming - and whisk until you have a good sauce.
You can bottle this and keep it in the fridge for about two weeks. Warm slightly if you want to serve it with dessert. Or you can pour it over a cake, ice cream, tarts, crumbles, pancakes, brownies, waffles even toast., there are endless delights.
If you want a salted caramel sauce, stir in 1 teaspoon of sea salt.
Buying from us On Line   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 on line shop. We can send your requirements to you anywhere in South Africa. Please do not pay until we have confirmed availability and invoiced you, then you pay and then we deliver or post. When you make an eft payment, make sure that it says who you are. Use the form on the website to email us your order. Click here to see our OnLine Shop.
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 see what’s happening in our world of food and wine (and a few other cultural events), visit our Events Calendar. It needs updating and we’ll do that tomorrow. 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.
Learn about wine and cooking We receive a lot of enquiries from people who want to learn more about wine. Cathy Marston and The Cape Wine Academy both run wine education courses, some very serious and others more geared to fun. You can see details of Cathy’s WSET and other courses here and here and the CWA courses here.
Chez Gourmet in Claremont has a programme of cooking classes. We plan to visit their French establishment after Vinexpo. 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. Nadège Lepoittevin-Dasse has cooking classes in Fish Hoek and conducts cooking tours to Normandy. You can see more details here. Emma Freddi runs the Enrica Rocca cooking courses at her home in Constantia. Brett Nussey’s Stir Crazy courses are now being run from Dish Food and Social’s premises in Main Road Observatory (opposite Groote Schuur hospital). Lynn Angel runs the Kitchen Angel cooking school and does private dinners at her home. She holds hands-on cooking classes for small groups on Monday and Wednesday evenings. She trained with Raymond Blanc, and has been a professional chef for 25 years. More info here

18th September 2013
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 online shop 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 and our blogs 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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