Thursday, September 21, 2017

A Pop up Lunch at The Homestead

Elaine Rousseau is one of our best caterers in Cape Town. Her company, Food Fanatics, has 18 years of experience. She has a lovely venue on Constantia Road in Wynberg, which you can book for events, and we were invited to join her and some of her family, customers and friends for lunch last weekend
She has an amazing garden, most of it turned to vegetables and fruit
Elaine's brother, Andre Rousseau, was the Viticulturist for Constantia Uitsig wine estate for many years. He is now making his own wines from grapes he buys in and we were there to taste them. He currently makes two Sauvignons Blanc, 2017 Grace (named after their mother) which is unwooded, with grapes from Durbanville and Darling and 2016 Sacharia (named after a grandmother) which is lightly wooded from grapes grown in Elgin, of which he made 300 cases. He is making both of them in a rather French style, they have good fruit and some maturity from lees contact. The unwooded has crisp acidity and figs and fig leaves, typical Elgin characteristics
The outside venue with its shade cover up and a bar at the end
Winemaker Andre Rousseau
Inside the Homestead venue, two long tables had been laid for the lunch
Trained barmen were there to sell us anything we wanted to drink
The Rousseau coat of arms on the wine boxes
Canapés of sour dough ciabatta, nectarines, Burrata mozzarella, topped with prosciutto
Good crisp arancini rice balls on a butternut purée. We ate far too many canapés while we waited for lunch, they were hard to resist
On the table were these whipped butters flavoured with chives and sprinkled with sumac and chive blossoms. The sour dough bread was excellent, with a lovely crisp and chewy crust
In the library corner
Lovely flower arrangements on the tables
Lots of chatting with friends and family before lunch
Elaine Rousseau
John slipped into the kitchen to get a preview of the dishes which were to be served family style on the tables. This is the Beetroot, quinoa, kale, broccoli and charred Brussels sprout salad, with dollops of torn mozzarella
Elaine supervising the preparation of the main course of roast pork belly
On goes some gravy
This was a superb dish. Crisp crackling, soft pork belly with most of the fat cooked away, served with roasted red onions and topped with baked ginger plums which were inspired, a lovely fruity sour contrast with the pork
Cumin and honey glazed baby carrots and behind them crisp roast potatoes and whole roasted garlic cloves
The Menu
Our starter of pan seared Kabeljou on white cannellini beans, lightly braised fennel with avocado and grapefruit. Interestingly, served cold and beautifully cooked
John's main course selection
Chatting over a long relaxed lunch
And then came dessert. Enough for 100 people. It was billed on the menu as a chocolate box. It nearly made some people faint with delight. Everything was chocolate
Three flavours of solid chocolate truffle, some chocolate and nut doughnuts
A sticky chocolate and caramel tart with buttery crumbly pastry
Chocolate mousse on top of chocolate brownies served with cream in dessert glasses
Close up of those truffles
Three tiers of delight. We ate well and too much, had some good double Espresso coffee and headed home for a nap. Thank you so much Elaine and Food Fanatics and Andre with your wine

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