Friday, July 08, 2016

This Week’s MENU. Vietnamese village, Hanoi, Leaving Vietnam, Anatoli, Cecilia Forest walk, Den Anker, De Wetshof Limestone Hill at Charango

The weekly Cape Food, Wine and Lifestyle E-Journal
A kelp gull in a Sea Point winter storm
Another exceptionally cold week, but with cloudy days and not enough rain to make a significant difference to our water supply. This weekend, we’ll be in Montagu and Robertson with our wine club friends. It will be very cold but we are looking forward to the warmth of companionship and Robertson hospitality  
@MyVoiceMap Elfin Trail in the Cecilia Forest with TravelMassive     A walk with the fairies and elves and one was dwarfed. We are members of Travel Massive an international travel networking organisation and were asked if we would like to go on a walk through Cecilia Forest one Saturday afternoon. We don't often do walks these day, we have both done a fair amount in the past and love them but time and work has taken its toll.
You take your phone on the walks and download the software from VoiceMap. There is a charge, which can see on their website. Then on the walk GPS triggers a commentary that tells you about your surroundings and gives directions. You need an iPhone or an Android phone. We have Windows phones, so an Android phone was provided to us for the walk. It was very interesting. And for Lynne, a bit challenging. VoiceMap walks can be done all over South Africa and internationally too. Some are in the country or seaside, others are city walks. Check out their website on
Turkish meze and atmosphere at Anatoli, Cape Town      We have been meaning to go back to Anatoli for literally years. This Turkish restaurant in Napier Street in Green Point has been open since 1984 which goes to show if you have a good formula and do excellent food, you can survive that long, which not many Cape Town restaurants can say. We had been yearning for some Turkish food and had a great time with our friends.
Lunch with the Winter Specials menu at Den Anker, V&A Waterfront      We had to postpone Father's Day this year because daughter Claire had flu and this meant we were able to take her with us to Den Anker the following Sunday where they had invited us to come and sample their winter menu. This is another great and worthy restaurant having been in the V & Waterfront for 21 years. They have one of the best locations there too and a great international menu as well as local specialities.
De Wetshof Limestone Hill Chardonnay with lunch at Charango Peruvian Bar and Grill, Cape Town      This was the release of the 2016 vintage of Limestone Hill, De Wetshof's unwooded easy drinking Chardonnay from the De Wetshof stable of 6 different Chardonnays. Charango is in4 Bree Street so we took the bus and enjoyed the welcome Pisco sour. Then over lunch we discovered that Limestone Hill is the perfect wine to go with all sorts of different foods, heat levels and tastes. And great to quaff.
MENU goes East - Leaving Ha Long Bay, a visit to a Vietnamese village     On our way back to Hanoi, we were taken to a village to see the traditional Water Puppets. We also opted to take another tour to see how people of the village live and farm.  It's a small village, quite middle class and very clean, especially when compared with the streets of Hanoi. We finished the day with a meal which we helped to make. A lovely experience
MENU goes East – In a Vietnamese village; a visit to a home and supper with a family      Our Vietnamese Odyssey came to its close with a family meal in the country. We finished the day in the village, visiting an historic house and then enjoyed a delicious meal, which we helped to make. A lovely experience
MENU goes East - and comes South West. Last day in Hanoi and home to Cape Town     Then, our last day in hot and steamy Hanoi, where the Monsoon was heralding its arrival. We had our last taste of the street life and street food, the night market and a one in 90 million chance encounter. Then we began the arduous 37 hour trip back home
Recipe of the week - Jalapeno and Peppadew Dip      A new dip was needed for entertaining; we found we were becoming a bit staid. Lynne had a pot of Mascarpone cheese and a cupboard filled with pickles, relishes, chutneys and flavours. This is what she made. Use as many peppers as you like, according to your own and your guests’ taste preference or heat tolerance. The brand we used for both was Peppadew's bottled peppers, but there are others on the market
250g pot of Mascarpone cheese - 3 mild or spicy Jalapeno peppers - 1 or 2 mild or spicy Peppadew peppers - 1 t pickle juice from the Jalapeno jar - salt
Roughly chop the two kinds of pepper. Put all the ingredients into a liquidiser or a deep container and, if using your stick blender, blitz them all together. Do not do this for too long or the cheese will turn to butter. Use the juice from the Jalapenos and/or Peppadews to make it a little more liquid, but do not add too much. Taste and add more peppers if you think it needs it. Add salt as necessary too. It doesn't matter if you have bits of the peppers in the dip. Serve with Banting crackers, corn chips or hot Panini rolls. It goes nicely alongside some guacamole
Wine of the week. De Wetshof Limestone Hill Chardonnay This clean crisp unwooded Chardonnay, full of limes, apples, lemons and good minerality is a superb food wine. It goes with delicate dishes and those that are more robust, rich and spicy. The 2016, just released, sells for R97 from the farm

7th July 2016
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