My boss gave me some quinces and a (stovetop) recipe, but I decided to poach them in the slow cooker.

First you gotta peel them. This is the hard part.

Make a syrup with a litre of boiling water and a cup of sugar. Add some vanilla (pods are of course gorgeous, but I used some bourbon vanilla extract I have kicking around). You can add some lemon juice too.

That does not look appetizing at all, does it? But after a day’s slow cooking…

Serve with custard. Tip: buy two litres of custard, hide one under your bed.

Volstruisnek-potjie, translated because I’m sure one can use the same basic recipe should one have a hunk of kangaroo handy.

I found some ostrich neck at a good price. Undoubtedly because the EU didn’t want it, but hey. Ons is nie bang nie.

So, in my black pot, I browned the meat in some oil in two batches. Then, some onions, on a low heat, went off, loaded some ammo.

Now you layer some potato slices or halved baby potatoes and some carrots. Then about a teaspoon of fresh rosemary, then some baby marrows, grean beans and two/three chopped tomatoes, or a tin of same.

The potjiekos thing is the layering, and the no stirring.

Some salt over the veggies, and two cups of chicken stock with a bit of lemon juice added into the pot. The original recipe adds vodka as well.

Heat until the stock is boiling, then cover and simmer slowly for two hours or so.

Serve with rice and a green salad.

And whatever you do, don’t stir the pot.

This time, a different recipe from last time. The same excellent results, though.

It was the two of us, so, four thighs. Black pot, as always.

Salt and pepper and some chicken rub, let that soak a while, then browned it in some melted butter.

I ended up pouring a lot of fat off, so I’d say the butter wasn’t needed. Next time I might make a roux, call it gumbo paprikash.

Remove the chicken, sauté an onion (two if you’re using more chicken), when it’s nice and translucent, add two tablespoons decent paprika and a good teaspoon cayenne pepper, more if you’re brave. Deglaze with a bit of white wine, add stock (I used about 250ml homemade chicken stock), put the chicken back in, cook with the lid mostly on for half an hour.

I had some mushrooms kicking around so those went in about halfway through.

When the chicken looks done, remove, turn off the gas (you cook with gas, right?), add 1/2 a cup creme fraiche.  This makes a sauce that goes really well with mash (oh yes, you were supposed to cook potatoes and veggies on the side. Stick it in the steamer and on the plate when you put in the mushrooms).



Is French for “how can you throw that away?”. (not really)

Basically, you make stock. You then take the meat and bones, add fresh onion and carrots, and make stock… again.

Sure, the second stock is kinda weak, but it makes a damnfine not-so-clean rice (dirty rice has chicken livers. This is not it).

I started with cheap chicken. Four breasts, on the bone. On the braai for a few minutes, then into the slow cooker with onions, carrots, pepper, allspice… you know the drill. Don’t forget a tablespoon of vinegar.

Cooked overnight, drained. Back into the slow cooker, fresh onion, fresh carrot, water.

For the rice, fried an onion in oil, added the rice, fried that in the oil, added some white wine, stirred a bit, added the stock, boiled ’till done, added fried mushrooms. Some people would call this risotto, but real risotto is different. And more work. And I like my grains separate.


Made this recipe last night. Yum.

Firstly, you need decent paprika. I bought half a kilo from House of Goodies. Red = good. Brown = crap.

Mix some* flour and some* paprika. Coat the chicken (in this case, four drumsticks, four thighs) in this mix and fry in oil, in batches. Remove, fry some* onion, cayenne pepper, a bit more* paprika, salt. Add chicken back in, add (homemade, I think this was the seekrit ingredient) stock, cook.

Add creme fraiche at the end, with the leftover flour. This didn’t thicken the sauce as much as I would have liked.

Serve with mash, although it also goes damn well with sourdough bread.

* The recipe gives quantities. I see that more as a guideline.


I got this recipe from Van Rensburgs Foods.

Fry two large onions in a knob of butter until brown. Remove from pot.

Brown springbok skenkels (shin) in batches. Add onions back in. Add boiling water to cover meat halfway.

Simmer for an hour, add 10ml salt, 60ml Worcestershire sauce, 10 peppercorns, 10 cloves.

Simmer for half an hour, add four cubed potatoes, four carrots sliced into 1cm chunks, 75gr currants, 75gr sultanas.

Simmer for half an hour, add a few shakes chutney.

When the carrots and potatoes are done, serve (with rice works well).

Gore alert:  Don’t click on “more” if you’re a sensitive viewer who believes that meat grows in polystyrene containers in the shops.

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It’s the 21st Century, baby!

Creamy smoked chicken, bacon and mushroom fettuccine


1 small onion, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
One pack (400 gr) bacon, cut in small pieces
One punnet mushrooms, halved or quartered

2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped
375ml Light & Creamy evaporated milk
1 tablespoon flour

1 x 400g packet fresh egg or tri-colour fettuccine
olive oil, to drizzle

2 smoked chicken breasts, cut in 1cm cubes


1. Heat oil in a frying pan. Gently fry onion and garlic. Add bacon. Cook for 2 minutes. Add mushrooms. Cook for 2 more minutes.

2. Add basil, rosemary, evaporated milk and flour to pan mixture. Bring to a light boil, stirring regularly, so it doesn’t stick to pan. Allow to simmer until it thickens.

3. Cook fettuccine following packet directions. Drain. Drizzle with a little olive oil and set aside.

4. Add smoked chicken to pan. Cook for 1-2 minutes. Add cooked fettuccine to coat in creamy mixture. Cook for about 1 minute until food is heated through.

… the butternut eats you.

This is a butternut from our garden.

This is my thumb after peeling said butternut.

So now I know that butternut juice strips the skin off your hands if you peel it while it’s fresh. You have to cure the damn thing for a couple of weeks after picking it.

Live and learn.


Since April 15th. Yay!


Went to the Fishhoek Pick & Pay looking for vegetables, found chicken at R19.99 a kilo. Probably genetically engineered and so full of hormones I’ll start growing breasts, but hey, the price was good.

Made a marinade mix using 3/4 cup olive oil, six teaspoons lemon juice, lots of garlic, two teaspoons mustard powder, half a handful of fresh rosemary and a couple of grinds of black pepper. Marinaded the chicken in this for a day or so, then put the chicken and sauce in a corningware dish, added a handful of cherry tomatoes, and stuck it in the oven at 180 for an hour or so.

Very good.

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