On the 6th of July in 1869 Agoston Haraszthy de Mokcsa died. Agoston Haraszthy de Mokcsa imported 1,400 varieties of grapevines to California in 1862 and planted the first large vineyard in California in the Sonoma Valley. After the devastating phylloxera blight decimated the European vineyards, some of these same vines, now on resistant American root stock, helped rescue the European vineyards. –
Thank you, Mister Haraszthy de Mokcsa, and God bless you to rest in peace.
I’m sufficiently recovered from my own version of devastating phylloxera blight to venture into my kitchen again. I can’t begin to paint the scene that I faced on Monday morning, after my family had been left to fend for themselves while I languished. It appears they fed an army, without washing a dish or pan in the process. Our Alice was frightfully cross, but I think her crossness was confounded by the men in her life. It has come to pass that she has (finally) chucked over Old Moses in favour of a new bloke, who goes by the dodgy name of Shylocks. Moses, she tells me, wanted to marry her – on the proviso that she went off to his Bantustan to look after his children (5 from different mothers!) and ageing parents. Our Alice declined; she’s a fashionable gal and quite likes city life. Moses is taking the whole business with extremely bad grace and lurks at our gate, threatening to hit Shylocks with his knobkierrie* if he catches sight of him.
It all leaves one feeling quite weak, and I decided we all needed a bit of beefing up. Angus beef, to be specific. It’s all the rage here at the moment and I am not sure that it’s being flown in from Aberdeen, or if local farmers bought a healthy pair of animals who have been breeding prolifically. Anyhow, a hunk of roasted sirloin is what I did, with a creamy mushroom and pearl onion sauce (lashings of brandy). Sweet potato chips on the side and we all went to bed warm and fortified.

We’ll just have to deal with Moses day by day.

*A knobkierrie is a traditional weapon, a sort of wooden truncheon.


68 Comments Add yours

  1. deepercolors says:

    Angus bulls from Scotland were brought to Kansas in the late? 800s. George Grant crossed them with Longhorns in Texas. The cross breed has been around for a long time over here. Mmmmmm.

    1. theonlycin says:

      It’s all a load of bull to me … meat is meat and a girl must eat 😉

      1. thestonemaidendiaries says:

        Angus beef is beslis baie beter as enige ander beef wat mens hier kry hoor. In SA is julle spoiled for choice, hier is ons ongelukkig nie en veral met beef betaal ons top dollar(oftewel pond) om behoorlike bief produkte te kry. Ek self gebruik niks anders as organiese Aberdeen Angus nie en klaar. Glo my jy sal dadelik die verskil proe tussen Angus en ander beef hier as die kans hom sou voordoen.
        Ek het op ‘n bees en skaapplaas grootgeword, en alhoewel ek nie ‘n groot rooivleis eater is nie, is my smaaksin goed ontwikkeld wat beef aanbetref, ons het met Brahmane geboer en die vet van ‘n Brahman is geel in vergelyking met ander bees rasse, die smaak is ook subtiel anders, en word ook natuurlik bepaal deur wat die bees eet. Dis soos die verskil tussen ‘gewone’ skape en karoo skape, mens tel dit dadelik op.

      2. theonlycin says:

        But you’re probably very spoilt as far as salmon goes?

      3. thestonemaidendiaries says:

        Yes, spoiled for choice indeed when it comes to salmon or any seafood really. Do miss good biltong though, oh and boerewors.

      4. theonlycin says:

        Oh, and there I just returned from buying a big bag of biltong to make cheese & biltong muffins. Sorry for you 😉

  2. dearrosie says:

    Cindy, you’re a bloody marvellous story teller 🙂
    and I’m glad you’re feeling better.

    1. theonlycin says:

      Thank you, Rosie 🙂

  3. souldipper says:

    See what happens when Mom is down for the count? Who knew you’d be needed to supervise a love story? Or prevent a…well, never mind. Glad you are up and about! I see by your last post you HAD to rally! I can’t see you missing out on that opportunity. 😀

    1. theonlycin says:

      I was poorly at the time, which probably means it’s my own fault for venturing out 😉

  4. Tandy says:

    I was not impressed with Angus beef when I tried some in the UK at Fifteen. I hope you are feeling way better xxx

    1. theonlycin says:

      We’re very much enjoying the Angus beef at the moment.

  5. Tilly Bud says:

    Mmm, yummy! That looks divine. Glad you’re feeling better.

    Isn’t it funny how family seem to think it’s ok to leave a mess when they cook? If we did it, they’d be complaining.

    1. theonlycin says:

      I think they’re terribly releived that I am back in the kitchen 🙂

  6. SidevieW says:

    i bet they are a;; so very glad you are better

    living vicariously through the other inhabitants is alwys interesting, isn’t it/

    1. theonlycin says:

      It does add a bit of spice to the domestic routine, yes 🙂

  7. leigh says:

    Love it.

  8. At least you have a free security guard at your gate 😀 !!

    (you should stick to Bonsmara beef, lol!)

    1. theonlycin says:

      Never heard the name, to my shame *blush*

  9. Steffi says:

    Yummy!I´m glad to hear you feel better!Have a nice day!

    1. theonlycin says:

      Good morning, Steffi 🙂 You have a good day too.

  10. Keely aka The Richest Girl in Bondi says:

    Not a fan of beef but your post kept me captivated all the same – such a juicy story! Best of luck with Moses ..

    1. theonlycin says:

      Thanks, we’ll probably have to get the security company to warn him off eventually 😉

  11. Moses needs to get a life! Glad you are feeling better! *makes note to do a potroast over the weekend*

    1. theonlycin says:

      I have enough leftover to make a nice pie over the weekend 🙂

  12. nursemyra says:

    Oh my… that sounds and looks delicious

    1. theonlycin says:

      Just what the doctor ordered, Myra … or the nurse 🙂

  13. Sigh…a soap opera at your gate. Angus beef sounds like just the thing to fortify your strength! It’s pretty common here in Australia – McDonald’s even have an “Angus beef burger” on their menu! 🙂

    1. theonlycin says:

      Good heavens, they do? *faints*

  14. bluebee says:

    Oh, that looks sooo delicious – mushroom and pearl onion sauce sounds like a magnificent accompaniment to steak (we just had sweet potato chips with Bonello’ fish frikkadels and beetroot relish for the second night in a row – yumm – thnx)

  15. theonlycin says:

    Sounds great, bluebee 🙂

  16. The Angus looks good. I hope that Moses will recover and leave the scene. I hope he won’t become a serious problem for your daughter. I’m glad you are feeling better. Blessings to you, Cindy…

    1. theonlycin says:

      Sorry Carol, I forget I have newer friends who haven’t been reading my blog forever; Our Alice is our housekeeper, my daughter is Original Bunn. (Maybe I should put a key in my sidebar explaining the cast of characters in my life *smile*)

  17. MissChris says:

    Ai, I miss cooking with onions!! Can you imagine never being able to cook with onions because your partner cannot eat them!! Not even grating finely works!
    Hope Moses does not think he can part Shylocks with that kiere!!

    1. theonlycin says:

      No onions … how awful 😦

  18. mairedubhtx says:

    My second ex-husband’s grandfather provided some of those American roots that resisted the blight. From Mustang grapes.

    1. theonlycin says:

      Oh my goodness, what a small world this is!

  19. Sparky says:

    When I 1st read Moses on the subject line I thought it was your gardner who wanted meat with all his meals, hehe! I had to laugh at the story though. Silly Moses!

    1. theonlycin says:

      Hahaha, you remember … that was Mesterd, not Moses. 🙂

  20. You do not want to know what I thought the photo of the sauce over your beef was when I saw it before reading what it is! Oh my! I knew you had been sick, but. . .

    Anyway, for some reason, I got the idea in my head that Alice was one of your dogs, and, well, you can imagine my thoughts as you told the rest of your story to a clueless (no longer, thank God) me!.

    Glad you are back to at least better health, if not tip-top!

    P.S. I continue to worry about my sanity – or at the very least, to what depths my mind will go. . .

    1. theonlycin says:

      We’re twins in weirdness, Paula, no worries … I also saw doggie-upchuck in the sauce. Put it down to our brilliance, our meds or our tinitus … 😉

  21. adeeyoyo says:

    Beef, glorious beef… Glad you’re better, Cin!

    1. theonlycin says:

      Thanks adee 🙂

  22. Pseu says:

    Looks scrumptious.

    1. theonlycin says:

      It was rather nice, Pseu, after my bland sick diet 🙂

  23. Leeswammes says:

    Poor Alice, sounds like serious men trouble! Glad you’re better – hope you were well enough to tell the kitchen-messing culprits off. Tut!

    1. theonlycin says:

      Oh they were sheepish about it and did a fast disappearing act, Judith 😉

  24. Moses and Shylocks…the beginning of a novel, without a shadow of a doubt: wonder whether Shylocks has a similar family waiting in the wings. Hope the whole business settles down without one swing of the knobkierrie…

      1. theonlycin says:

        I agree, Doc 🙂

    1. theonlycin says:

      Just you wait, Kate, there’s a matter of money involved too. Watch this space 😉

  25. slpmartin says:

    I’ve seen several stories on our sharing our vines with Europe..a little bit of California everywhere. 😉

    1. theonlycin says:

      Ironic, really, the new world saving the old one?

  26. It appears they fed an army, without washing a dish or pan in the process. – so fun to read

    1. theonlycin says:

      Hehe, less fun to clean up 😉

  27. libraryscene says:

    Oh dear…poor angus, but …may his blood be the only one shed in this triangle ~ (glad your better)

    1. theonlycin says:

      Thanks ma’am 🙂

  28. Thanks for an entertaining read, Cindy 😀 I bet your family is thrilled to have you back in the kitchen!

    1. theonlycin says:

      I think they are, Naomi 🙂

  29. What a fabulous read, I can picture it all so clearly in the head, love your writing, certainly entertaining and leaves me with a big grin. LOL. Such a fan of Angus beef, it really is very popular in Australia at the moment, seems a menu is not complete without it. :0)
    Glad your feeling better!

    1. theonlycin says:

      Thanks, Cheffie, it seems popular everywhere, I do wonder how these food trends spread like wildfire?

  30. Jamie Dedes says:

    “knobkierrie” – fun new word. Un-fun if the thing it represents is used on me!!!

    1. theonlycin says:

      It is a nice word 🙂

  31. Thank goodness for domestic angels – though my Anah is always grumpy on Mondays, can’t think why 🙂

  32. Jo says:


    Cut him, and does he not bleed? Tickle him, and does he not laugh? Hit him with your knobkierie, and does he not sprout lumps all over his head and get double vision? 🙂

  33. I would decline that marriage proposal too FOR SURE!! Good on Alice! Hopefully Moses eventually accepts his loss or find a new love soon and yip! Some people cook a meal using every piece of cutlery and crockery that they can find in the kitchen. How do they do that?

    1. theonlycin says:

      It seems Moses has finally got the message, haven’t seen him for a while 😉

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