02 June 2012


1,2 kg plum tomatoes
4-6 large garlic cloves, peeled and left whole
2 large onions, peeled and cut into wedges
mixed herbs
chilli flakes
olive oil
salt and black pepper
30 ml tomato paste
250 to 500 ml chicken or vegetable stock

Place the tomatoes, garlic and onions in a large ovenproof dish.
Sprinkle with the mixed herbs, chilli flakes and season to taste with salt and pepper.
Drizzle with oil and roast for 60 minutes at 190ºC or until lightly browned and sticky (caramelised).
Remove from oven and allow to cool down a little.
Process the tomatoes with the onion and garlic and pan juices in a processor or blender until smooth.
Place this pureé into a saucepan, add the tomato paste and stir in stock. Don't thin it too much.
Taste and add more seasoning if needed.
Serves 6

22 March 2012


Those who know me will know that I love cheesecake. While pregnant with my second son, I once ate a whole baked cheesecake from The Grapevine Coffee Shop in Sunnyside, Pretoria... it was bliss, and he was a sweet baby! Sometimes there is no time for baking cheesecakes, so here's a quick and easy recipe for those rushed days.

1 packet Tennis biscuits
1 tablespoon butter
1 tin condensed milk
1 tub fat-free smooth cottage cheese
half a cup lemon juice

Crush the Tennis biscuits into crumbs.
Mix the crumbs and the butter together, and press mixture into a pie dish.
Combine the condensed milk with the cottage cheese, add the lemon juice. Whisk it all together until smooth.
Pour onto the biscuit base and smooth over.
You can add granadilla pulp or fresh strawberries on top.
Refrigerate for at least two hours before serving.
Makes 6 to 8 servings

24 August 2010


This one comes from Philadelphia, USA. I came across it one day while planning a Thanksgiving Day menu in Canada. It was a sure hit, and I'm always asked for the recipe.

1¾ cups half and half (evaporated milk, or half whole milk and half cream)
¾ cup sugar
5 tablespoons all purpose flour (cake flour)
5 large eggs, yolks only
2½ tablespoons unsalted butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Bring half and half to simmer in heavy medium saucepan.
Remove from heat.
Stir ¾ cup sugar and 5 tablespoons flour in large bowl to blend.
Add egg yolks and whisk until well blended.
Gradually whisk in hot milk mixture.
Return mixture to saucepan, stirring over medium heat until mixture boils and is very thick, about 5 minutes.
Remove from heat.
Add 2½ tablespoons butter and whisk until melted.
Stir in 2 teaspoons vanilla extract.
Transfer pastry cream to a large bowl.
Lightly press clingwrap plastic onto surface of pastry cream, refrigerate until cool, about 1 hour.

1½ cups all purpose flour (cake flour)
1 tablespoon sugar
pinch of salt
½ (1 stick, or 125 grams) chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces
2 tablespoons cold water

Combine 1½ cups flour, 1 tablespoon sugar and pinch of salt in processor.
Add ½ cup butter and cut in using on/off turns until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
Add water by tablespoonfuls and process until moist clumps form.
Gather dough into ball, flatten into round shape.
Wrap in clingwrap plastic and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Preheat oven to 350°F / 180°C
Roll out dough on lightly floured surface to round shape to fit over the top of pie pan with removable bottom.
Fold overhang dough in to form double-thick sides, press into bottom.
Freeze crust for 15 minutes.
Line pie crust with aluminum foil, fill with dried beans or pie weights.
Bake until set, about 15 minutes.
Remove foil and beans / weights, and bake until pale golden, about 20 minutes.
Transfer pie pan to rack and leave to cool completely.

2 large Granny Smith apples peeled, cored and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons sugar
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
whipped cream

Preheat oven to 350°F / 180°C
Spoon pastry cream into crust, smooth top.
Arrange apples over pastry cream.
Combine 2 tablespoons sugar and ¼ teaspoon cinnamon in small bowl.
Sprinkle over apples.
Bake until apples are tender and filling is set, about 45 minutes.
Transfer pan to rack and cool completely.
Decorate with whipped cream.
Makes 10 to 12 servings