Festive Strawberry Apple Almond Crumble



Straw­berry Apple Almond Crumble

 

 

This crumble is simply and utterly divine. The tart­ness from the straw­ber­ries and apples mar­ries beau­ti­fully with the rich, but­tery, almond top­ping. The apples add tex­ture to the filling, while the straw­ber­ries add a much needed juicy dec­ad­ence. The hint of lemon cuts through the sweet­ness and the top­ping does what it should do: adds a crunchy-buttery-rich-biscuity finish.

 

 

As I have men­tioned in past posts, I love cooked apples even more than raw ones (they are quite bland when raw), and obvi­ously I like apple crumble. How­ever, I wanted to do some­thing a little more dec­ad­ent and I sup­pose Christmas-sy (hence the red and green) – even if it was simply sub­lim­inal. Hav­ing seen the won­der­ful price of straw­ber­ries (a pun­net at PNP was R15), I had no choice but to buy them and add them to a crumble – I think it was then when the sub­lim­inal Xmas mes­sage popped into my head. Also, lov­ing the fla­vour of almonds, and know­ing it works per­fectly with apples and straw­ber­ries, I knew it would be just the thing to make this crumble even better.

 

 

 
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Pomegranate Swirl Ice-Cream and the Magnum Event



Pomegranate Swirl Ice-Cream and the Mag­num Event

Two week’s ago I atten­ded the Mag­num Pink Pomegranate and Black Espresso Launch held at the oh-so suave Shimmy Beach Club. It was a fab­ulous event with cock­tails every­where you looked and deli­cious fin­ger foods that swirled around as waiters made their way through the crowds. Also on the menu, obvi­ous, but not dis­ap­point­ing, was the new Pink Pomegranate and Black Espresso Mag­nums. Before I get into the new Mag­num fla­vours, I think it imper­at­ive I talk a bit about the event and the very excit­ing Mag­num auc­tion.

The event kicked off with, Top Billing hunk, Janez Ver­meiren intro­du­cing the new fla­vours, and an extremely excit­ing Mag­num com­pet­i­tion. What is the com­pet­i­tion? It’s a Mag­num Twit­ter Auc­tion. It’s the very first for South Africa where tweets equal currency.

At the event we were given a sneak pre­view on how the auc­tion will work by hav­ing two prizes up for bids. Each prize was inspired by the new Mag­num fla­vours. Rep­res­ent­ing the Pink Pomegranate was a gift set of pink Ted Baker clutches, Guess sunglasses and other desir­able objects. Rep­res­ent­ing the Black Espresso, was a sim­ilar gift set only in black. How­ever, to win a gift set was up to you to tweet for it. The more you tweeted the more chance you stood to win.

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Whole-Roasted Cauliflower



The Humble Cauliflower

 

This is a great way, not only to pre­pare cauli­flower, but also to elev­ate it into some­thing more than just a veget­able com­pon­ent to a dish. Pla­cing a whole-roasted cauli­flower onto your table will cer­tainly get every­one talk­ing. This usu­ally insipid white veget­able is trans­formed into a golden-charged globe beg­ging to be eaten (cer­tainly a devi­ation from the usual response to cauliflower).

 

Aside from look­ing dra­mat­ic­ally amaz­ing, the taste is also one to rave about. Before roast­ing, the whole cauli­flower is poached in a stock of white wine, vin­egar, herbs and water. This pro­cess slightly pickles the cauli­flower and infuses it with fla­vour; while roast­ing makes it crisp and the charged edges has a much needed slight bit­ter­ness that adds another tone to the dish.

 


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Chocolate Fondant NOMU Style



Chocol­ate Fond­ant NOMU Style

 

 

Last week Wed­nes­day I was invited by NOMU to attend an “after­noon of irres­ist­ible treats”, as per the invit­a­tion so tan­tal­iz­ingly phrased it. And what an after­noon of dec­ad­ence and spoil­ing it was. Thank the Pope I never ate lunch, as per the invite sug­ges­ted with a some­what sneaky-effective-luring “p.s” (typed at the bot­tom of the page). Hav­ing skipped lunch and walked from Cav­endish Mall (yes, you read right), ALL THE WAY to Winchester Avenue, Bish­ops Court, to Ottimo Ciba, where the event took place, I was more than com­fort­ably hungry – to be frank I was bloody starving.

 

 

On entrance, wor­ry­ingly sweaty and with disheveled hair, (the walk was fright­fully hilly and LONG), I was warmly greeted by Paul (hus­band to NOMU cre­ator, Tracy), who handed me a name badge and ushered me to the room where the “irres­ist­ible treats” where to be found and the mys­tery behind the invite was revealed.

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Pickled Root Vegetable and Crumbed Goats Cheese Salad



Pickled Beet and Baby Rain­bow Car­rot Salad with Goats Cheese

 

 

I just love the look of baby rain­bow car­rots, how­ever I don’t find them very sweet – in fact I think they’re a bit on the bit­ter side. I usu­ally don’t like to use them, for (1). nor­mal car­rots are much nicer and (2). I am not a huge fan of cooked car­rots. But, I had to find a way to use them, after all they are so cute and pretty! I decided to make them into pickles. I love pickles, and I really like pickled car­rots and it just so happened that that If I bought the car­rots I got R10 off if I bought beets as well – so obvi­ously with a deal like that, who could refuse? Sar­casm aside, I did think that beets were a good idea to buy – they’re pretty cool pickled too and they’re rather healthy too.

 

 

Crumb­ing and fry­ing goats cheese is simply scrump­tious – I don’t think I should ever eat it any other way. Once fried, they become little cheese cro­quettes that are warm in the inside and crunchy on the out­side – what more can you want? Well, pickles (obviously).

 

I chose to use the pepper-coated one (since it was in the fridge), it was very deli­cious and I think any fla­vour goats cheese would go down a treat. These goats cheese cro­quettes would also work well in a salad of Parma Ham and roas­ted cherry toma­toes and toasted pine nuts. They would also work great served as a tapas – they are so mar­velous they can handle their own.

 


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