Ah, December and summer madness reigns supreme. Despite dire warnings from the finance gurus, people are spending like there’s no tomorrow. Even crazier is their behaviour in traffic, every lunatic and his dog seem to be on the roads. Mercifully, from next week they will begin their pilgrimage to the coast to infuriate the locals there and leave Johannesburg a tranquil corner of heaven.
My kitchen has been the beneficiary of gifts lately, First Sighting’s six little monthly soldiers arrived right on time in the form of a mixed case of Sauvignon Blanc, Shiraz and Pinot Noir. This was to thank me for my recipe for their November newsletter. I had experimented with rosewater and chocolate and was very pleased with the result. The recipe can be found here.
My dear friends, Mel and Linda, gifted me with a darling set of spoons with sweet inscriptions on them: A pinch of joy; a dash of tenderness; a spoonful of affection and a heap of love. Too precious, thank you both.
A work colleague asked me a few days ago what I consider to be the definitive starter cookbook for a busy mum. I said I’d think about it and get back to her. I arrived home to find that the new PicknPay ‘The Best of Fresh Living’ cookbook had been delivered to me by the publishers for review. This book is possibly the only book my colleague will need.
It’s a delightful, sunny book and useful for any level of cooking skills. I found the inclusion of a shopping list of larder and freezer ingredients a great bonus. The book has solved the eternal wearisome problem of working mothers the world over, by dedicating an entire chapter to weeknight suppers.
All the recipes are concise and relatively easy to make. My first try from the book left a heap of very clean bones …
Jamaican jerk spareribs
Sweet, sticky and delicious
1 chilli halved and seeded
4 spring onions, chopped
3 cloves garlic
3 Tbs (45ml) grated ginger
2 Tsp (30ml) thyme leaves
1-2 tsp (5-10ml) ground allspice
Juice of 2 limes or 1 lemon (about ¼ cup)
½ cup (125ml) tomato sauce
½ cup (125ml) pineapple juice or tomato juice
½ cup (125ml) soft brown sugar
1-2 racks of pork ribs, halved to form riblets
Salt and milled pepper
Chopped spring onions and chilli, for serving
Blits all sauce ingredients in a blender until smooth.
Season pork ribs. Pour over half the sauce. Allow to marinate for at least 2 hours before cooking.
Place ribs on foil-covered baking tray and cook under a hot grill, basting occasionally with remaining sauce, until cooked through and slightly charred.
Serve with chopped onions and chilli.
Et viola! Better than I have eaten at any steakhouse and pretty as a picture to boot!
For more contributions to Celia’s challenge theme of monthly kitchens, click here.