Number 164

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January 31st, 2009

     
 
 

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Greetings everyone!  And a special welcome to all the new subscribers! As you know I had to change my address list, thanks for taking the trouble to resubscribe! Much appreciated! Why not ask your email contacts if they don't want to subscribe as well?

New subscribers and everyone else, get your freebie at the link below.

February 14th is Valentine's day! A day for romantics, lovers and also a day of expensive red carnations and roses! Here is a tip for you, white roses and carnations are half the price of red ones, so buy white and just tie them with a red ribbon. If a box of chocolates is added, the difference won't even be noticed!

To all you girls (ladies included of course) have a Happy Valentine's day. I hope you have a very romantic boyfriend/husband/admirer. The idea of sending a Valentine's card is to not add your name and let the recipient guess who sent it, much more romantic that way!

You can scroll down to some really nice Valentine's recipes to prepare for that romantic dinner.

Most of my newsletters contain downloadable freebies, if you missed out on previous ones, go to the Archive and download those you missed.

Just to let everyone know that I reserve the right to use anything that arrives in my email inbox either on my website or in my newsletter, unless it clearly states that I am not allowed to do so.

Click on the banner on the right and take a chance on the EuroMillions or UK Lotto. You never know when your lucky day will be....... Remember me if you should win the jackpot???

The Valentine Story

Every February 14th, chocolates, flowers, and gifts are exchanged between loved ones, all in the name of St. Valentine.
Who is this mysterious saint and why do we celebrate this holiday?
I have two different legends here ... Enjoy!

The first legend, and perhaps the best known, began in Rome, when the Emperor, Claudius II, was involved in many bloody and unpopular campaigns. “Claudius the Cruel” as he was called, was having a difficult time getting soldiers to join his military leagues. He believed that the reason was that Roman men did not want to leave their loves or families. So, he cancelled all marriages and engagements in Rome!
The good Saint Valentine, who was a priest in Rome, in the year 269 A.D., together with his friend Saint Marius, defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret.
When Valentine's actions were discovered, he was sentenced to be beaten to death with clubs and to have his head cut off.
But while in prison, it is believed that Valentine fell in love with a young girl, who may have been his jailor's daughter, who visited him during his confinement. Before his death on the 14th day of February, it is alleged that he wrote her a letter, which he signed
" From your Valentine"
In 496 A.D., Pope Gelasius set aside February 14 to honor St. Valentine.

Another legend says that Valentine's Day started in ancient Rome, on February 14th, a holiday to honor Juno. Juno was the Queen of the Roman Gods and Goddesses. The Romans also knew her as the Goddess of women and marriage. Then, the following day, February 15th, began the Feast of Lupercalia.
In those days, the lives of young boys and girls were strictly separate. However, on the eve of the festival of Lupercalia, the names of Roman girls were written on slips of paper and placed into jars. Each young man would draw a girl's name from the jar and would then be partners for the duration of the festival with the girl whom he chose. Sometimes the pairing of the children lasted an entire year, and often, they would fall in love and would later marry.
In the United States, Miss Esther Howland is given credit for sending the first valentine cards. Commercial valentines were introduced in the 1800's and now ... well .. you know the rest....

Tips for Valentine's Entertaining

Make this the most romantic meal of the year
Avoid abandoning your valentine too long between courses by choosing dishes you feel confident about. Prepare as much as possible in advance and focus on enjoying dinner — not to mention the fun that'll ensue after you eat!
Set the scene for romance. Use your fanciest tableware, low bowls of floating candles, fresh flowers and a sumptuous tablecloth. Or, go exotic by decorating with tea lights, colourful place settings and a couple of comfortable cushions on the ground for seating.
Keep portions small and enjoy your meal at a leisurely pace to avoid feeling overstuffed on rich foods. (The goal here is to create a meal that excites — but doesn't overload — the senses.)
If you both love to cook, plan and prepare the meal together. Designate one head chef to avoid arguments about techniques or taste. If you both love to lead, then just alternate years.
Little touches make all the difference. Try warming plates in the oven, adding elegant garnishes or selecting just the right stemware to set the mood.

SPECIAL CHAMPAGNE DRINKS
Unless you're making a drink where the flavour of the Champagne really matters (like the Classic Champagne Cocktail), generally, inexpensive alternatives such as sparkling wine work well.
Always pour the mixers in first, then top off with Champagne to avoid fizzy overflow.
Mimosa
This one's a brunch classic. Increase the flavor by using a 1:5 ratio of freshly-squeezed orange juice to Champagne. Then add a splash of triple sec.
Kir Royale
The fancy cousin to the made-with-white-wine Kir, the Kir Royale consists of a dash of creme de cassis (currant syrup), topped off with Champagne.
Black Velvet
This is an easy and strangely delicious drink with a 4:1 ratio of Champagne to black Irish stout.
Death in the Afternoon
Traditionally made from absinthe, a spirit not available here, in a 0.5:5 ratio to Champagne, add anise-flavoured liqueur.

Poinsettia
For a holiday brunch, make Poinsettias: a 1:4 ratio of triple sec to Champagne, with a splash of cranberry juice added for colour.
Nelson's Blood
Named for the British Admiral George Nelson, this makes a great, if slightly morbidly-named, party drink. The recipe calls for a 5:1 ratio of Champagne to tawny Port.
Moving on to the slightly more complicated ones...
Classic Champagne Cocktail
Soak a sugar cube in bitters, drop it into a flute, fill the flute with Champagne and garnish with a twist of lemon. This classic drink dates back to at least the mid-19th century.
French 75
There are a number of French 75 recipes floating around; the only thing people agree on is that it's a serious drink with serious ramifications. Here's the classic: a splash of simple syrup, a bigger splash of lemon juice, an even bigger splash (about an ounce) of gin, topped off with a glassful of Champagne.

Have fun!

Thanks to the Glenacres Superspar Newsletter

Kitch 'n' Zinc

I happened to find this really nice Blog, please click on the link below and go browse around.....

Following with thanks from Brian at Kitsch'n'Zinc

St Valentines Day Blues

Chefs everywhere around the world will be preparing special dishes for their guests for Valentines dinner. There'll be more hearts than several hundred decks of cards, a veritable tsunami of chocolate, food of every colour as long as it's red, pastillage roses, oysters, shellfish, pink champagne sorbets, passion fruit souffles, tomatoes, smoked salmon, every aphrodisiac, real or imagined, under the sun.There'll be chocolates and flowers for the ladies and maybe even heart shaped candles - it's enough to make you puke. You'd almost think they were more romantic than old St Val himself with the amount of trouble they put themselves to, ensuring that this night for lovers is celebrated to the full.
Nothing could be further from the truth. In reality chefs everywhere hate St Valentines Day. It's the one day in the year when you can guarantee that your restaurant will be full but your takings will be halved. Try to sell a table of 4 or 6 on St Valentines Day, it would be easier to sell Gordon Ramsays latest cookery book to Anthony Worral Thompson. Everyone wants " a romantic table for 2, in an alcove ". It's easy to make 2 tables of 2 into a table of 4 but it's bloody difficult to make a table of 4 into 2 tables of 2. And how many alcoves does the average restaurant have ? Put them too close to each other or too close to the kitchen door and you're guaranteed to ruin someone's night of passion and lose a customer for life into the bargain.
Of course the other problem catering on St Valentines is that more so than any other time of the year or special dining experience this is bloody amateur's night. People who have never set foot in a larney restaurant before are going to struggle with the etiquette of fine dining, the switching off of cell phones, the proper use of utensils, the sipping of fine wines instead of 2 pints of beer staining the fine linen tablecloths. They're going to ask for steaks well done, including the energy giving steak tartare, they'll want the fish deep fried, none of those fancy vegetables, french fries, " no, just give us some chips mate , oh and have you got Heinz tomato sauce ? " No wonder the chefs spend so much time planning the set menus to ensure they get through the night with the minimum of frustration and maximum profit.

Mirna van Wyk

Mirna is an educational psychologist from Stellenbosch. She taught at several schools, amongst others Stellenbosch High School, Bloemhof Girls’ High and Jan Kriel School for learners with barriers to learning. She is a mother, loves art, the ocean and children. You are welcome to comment or send questions to her at mirnafvanwyk@gmail.com

Kids@Heart

Parents, grannies and teachers often ask me for a recipe to raise children. My grandmother from Namaqualand used to say: “Child, we only had the Bible for a guideline-and that was enough.” Who can argue with that?
Incidentally, I have recently come across an interesting book by Robert Shaw, an American doctor who has become disillusioned with the modern American culture. He compiled a concise set of guidelines which summarises good childraising principles. The book’s title is “The Epidemic - 15 ways to Ruin your Child and Your Life.”

Every family has its own special challenges and no parent can at all times adhere to all these guidelines. However, I do believe that each parent can attempt to be guided by these principles. I’d love to share the first seven principles with you.
1. Don’t plan ahead. Don’t think early on about arranging a secure home in which to raise a child. Especially, don’t pick a husband or wife with character traits that would make him or her a true partner and supporter as you raise your children. Take things as they come-act on your impulses and instincts.
2. Leave your infant to be raised by an inadequate or unconnected caretaker for too many hours.
3. Keep yourself stressed and busy. Be exhausted when you come home. It’s especially effective to feel guilty about being away. You can always rid yourself of the guilt with a present or fast food.
4. Give in to your child’s whims on everything and demand nothing in return. That will make up for possible guilt and neglect.
5. Facilitate your child’s ascent into the world of consumerism. Accommodate his endless urges for the latest, coolest, most attractive, most superficial things.
6. Allow your child to think he is the boss of the universe. Avoid frustrating or regulating him - rather give in to his tantrums and emotional blackmail. Definitely don’t waste energy in setting boundaries.
7. Don’t subscribe to a code of ethics or morals that can override your impulses-and definitely don’t expose your child to such a code. Even better if you don’t state and explain your personal code of ethics to your child.

People are not born with the wisdom to be good parents. We need to continually read, listen, reflect, plan and pray. If you are not guiding and teaching your child – where is he getting his guidance? From television, from friends or worse?
Become involved, enlightened and empowered – and built a lifelong relationship with your child.
Next time we shall look at the final eight guidelines. Blessings from heart to heart.

 S A Food and Goods all over the World

Click here to see a list of countries and shops that sell S A goods. If you own a shop overseas that sells SA stuff or if you know of one, let me know and I will add it to the page

Facebook

Come join me on Facebook, my Facebook email is peter@funkymunky.co.za

Freebie!!

Right click here to download a recipe eBook with Fondue recipes.

One Ticket is All It Takes

Not lucky in the SA Lotto? Why not take a chance on the UK Lotto? Minimum jackpot is Three million pounds (R45 million!) Click here for a chance to win BIG!
A ticket also makes a great Valentines gift!

Never buy another recipe book again!

My Recipe CD has now been updated and now includes 50 Recipe eBooks as well as 8 Bonus eBooks (4 eBooks on making, marketing and selling crafts for profit) Click here to take a look. (that works out to about R2 per recipe book! sheessshhh!)

Hello Peter,
Just to let you know that I received my recipe CD today in the mail and I'm over the moon about it.
I'm going to spread the word to others to order copies too. It's most certainly worth every cent..........
Thanks again,
LC

Glenacres Superspar Recipe

Glenacres Superspar sends out a really nice newsletter full of super recipes. To subscribe, click here and send the blank email. 

BAKED FRUITS with HONEY and SPICES

55g Margarine
150ml Orange Juice
4 Tbsp Clear Honey
1 tsp Mixed Spice
2 Bananas, Thickly Sliced
3 Peaches, Halved, Stoned and Sliced
12 Apricots, Stoned
Low Fat Yoghurt to Serve

1. Put the margarine into a pan and add the orange juice, honey and spice
2. Bring just to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 5 minutes
3. Add the fruit to the hot syrup and cook gently, for about 5 minutes, until soft
4. Serve warm or chilled with low fat yoghurt

On the wild side 

 

Red billed oxpecker

 

Photo by Anna Eksteen
Click photo for larger image

Red-billed oxpeckers have a marvelous relationship with game animals in which the two different groups live together for each other's mutual benefit. The oxpeckers get their food of ticks and horseflies from the mammals, as well as nesting material in the form of hair. In return, the mammals benefit in two ways: the oxpeckers rid them from parasites, and warn them of approaching danger.

If you visit the Kruger National Park or one of the game reserves in KwaZulu-Natal, you will most probably see some small groups of red-billed oxpeckers clambering on the bodies of bigger game mammals, from impalas and larger antelopes to white rhinoceros, giraffes and zebras.

In farming areas these brown birds have adopted cattle and horses as hosts, but because domestic stock is dipped to rid them of ticks and other parasites, oxpeckers have become rare outside game reserves; not only has the dip eliminated and important food source for them, but it has also poisoned them.

Red-billed oxpeckers give 'chittering' and hissing calls when alarmed and when flying, mainly to keep contact with one another, but also as alarm calls. They usually roost in palm trees or reed beds, at night, but sometimes in tree holes or stone walls.

They breed in tree holes and line the floor of their nests with hair and grass. Both parents incubate the clutch of two or three pinkish-white, speckled eggs for 13 days. Both parents and up to three helpers feed the chicks until they are ready to leave the nest after about a month. When full grown they reach a length of 20-22cm and weigh between 42-49g.

Taken from: Animals of the Kruger Park and Lowveld - Heritage Publishing. 

Find your way around South Africa

With this really informative map, just click here:  http://www.sa.c2a.co.za/#

 Source: SouthAfrica.info The all-in-one official guide and web portal to South Africa.  
 
Afrikaans Newsletter

Subscribe to my Afrikaans newsletter . Visit my Afrikaans website
 
Smile a While

A man walks into a restaurant with a full-grown ostrich behind him. The waitress asks them for their orders.
The man says, "A hamburger, fries and a coke," and turns to the ostrich,
"What's yours?"
"I'll have the same," says the ostrich.
A short time later the waitress returns with the order "That will be R60.40 please," and the man reaches into his pocket and pulls out the exact change for payment.
The next day, the man and the ostrich come again and the man says, "A hamburger, fries and a coke."
The ostrich says, "I'll have the same."
Again the man reaches into his pocket and pays with exact change.
This becomes routine until the two enter again. "The usual?" asks the waitress.
"No, this is Friday night, so I will have a steak, baked potato and a salad," says the man.
"Same," says the ostrich.
Shortly the waitress brings the order and says, "That will be R90.62"
Once again the man pulls the exact change out of his pocket and places it on the table.
The waitress cannot hold back her curiosity any longer. "Excuse me, sir. How do you manage to always come up with the exact change in your pocket every time?"
"Well," says the man, "several years ago I was cleaning the attic and
found an old lamp. When I rubbed it, a Genie appeared and offered me two wishes. My first wish was that if I ever had to pay for anything, I would just put my hand in my pocket and the right amount of money would always
be there."
"That's brilliant!" says the waitress. "Most people would ask for a million dollars or something, but you'll always be as rich as you want for as long as you live!"
"That's right. Whether it's a gallon of milk or a Rolls Royce, the exact money is always there," says the man.
The waitress asks, "What's with the ostrich?"
The man sighs, pauses and answers, "My second wish was for a tall chick with a big butt and long legs who agrees with everything I say." 

Twas the month after Christmas,
and all through the house,
Nothing would fit me,
not even a blouse.

The cookies I'd nibbled,
the chocolate I'd taste
and the holiday parties
had gone to my waist.

When I got on the scales
there arose such a number!
When I walked to the store
(less a walk than a lumber),

I'd remember the marvellous meals I'd prepared;
The gravies and sauces and beef nicely rared,
The wine and the rum balls, the bread and the cheese
And the way I'd never said, "No thank you, please."

As I dressed myself in my husband's old shirt
And prepared once again to do battle with dirt...
I said to myself, as I only can,
"You can't spend a winter, disguised as a man!"

So, away with the last of the sour cream dip.
Get rid of the fruit cake, every cracker and chip.
Every last bit of food that I like must be banished
Till all the additional ounces have vanished.

I won't have a cookie, not even a lick.
I'll want only to chew on a long celery stick.
I won't have hot biscuits, or corn bread, or pie.
I'll munch on a carrot and quietly cry.

I'm hungry, I'm lonesome, and life is a bore...
But isn't that what January is for?
Unable to giggle, no longer a riot.
Happy New Year to all, and to all a good diet.

It was autumn, and the Red Indians asked their New Chief if the winter was going to be cold or mild. Since he was a Red Indian chief in a modern society, he couldn't tell what the weather was going to be.
Nevertheless, to be on the safe side, he replied to his Tribe that the winter was indeed going to be cold and that the members of the village should collect wood to be prepared.
But also being a practical leader, after several days he got an idea. He went to the phone booth, called the National Weather Service and asked 'Is the coming winter going to be cold?'
'It looks like this winter is going to be quite cold indeed,' the weather man responded.
So the Chief went back to his people and told them to collect even more wood. A week later, he called the National Weather Service again.
'Is it going to be a very cold winter?'
'Yes,' the man at National Weather Service again replied, 'It's definitely going to be a very cold winter.'
The Chief again went back to his people and ordered them to collect every scrap of wood they could find. Two weeks later, he called the National Weather Service again. 'Are you absolutely sure that the winter is going to be very cold?'
'Absolutely,' The Man replied. 'It's going to be one of the coldest winters ever.'
'How can you be so sure?' the Chief asked.
The weatherman replied, 'The Red Indians are collecting wood like crazy.'

This is how Stock Markets work

Herbs


In keeping with the Valentine's theme

ROSE
The rose is strictly speaking not a herb, but it deserves a place amongst our herbs as it is so beautiful and has the uses of a herb.
A perennial shrub, roses like average soil and a sunny situation.
Roses need a good watering program and regular checking for insects. Catnip, winter savory, rosemary or pennyroyal grown under roses help to keep the bugs away.

Domestic uses:
A beautiful and popular cut flower for the vase
The petals are an essential in pot-pourri

Cosmetic uses:
Rosewater (made by boiling 2 cups of petals in 2 cups of water for 15 minutes) has an antiseptic and soothing quality, and can be used on all skin types, even very sensitive or inflamed skin
Cooled rosewater may be strained and kept in the fridge for further use

Medicinal uses:
Rose petal tea (made by infusing a cup of boiling water with a quarter cup of rose petals, stood for 5 minutes, then strained) has a calming effect. Serve it with a little honey
Rose oil, used as a massage oil, is said to aid circulation and tone the blood capillaries
Rosewater splashed on the outside of the eyes helps with conjunctivitis
Rosehip contains several vitamins, especially vitamin C and may be taken in the form of a tea or syrup

Culinary uses:
The petals may be used to flavour ice cream, remembering to remove the bitter white heel of the petal
The petals may be used to make rose petal conserve, also removing the heel
 
 

The FunkyMunky Herb eBook is now available. 48 popular herbs, descriptions and uses with photos. Immediately available, will be emailed to you. Only R50 , send me an email for payment details.
I'm very impressed with what I've read so far. What I really like is that your book is a combination of medicinal and culinary advice, unlike many other herb books I've read.
And the format is great - thanks very much. I have an ambitious project to make a herb garden this year - so your section of herb gardens will come in very handy - Shelagh
 
 
Zimbabwe update

For the latest on happenings in Zimbabwe, go to:  http://www.sokwanele.com/thisiszimbabwe/  and subscribe to their newsletter, a really good source of current information
 
This South Africa - interesting facts and information 

The A to Z of South African culture (each newsletter features a letter of the alphabet) see archive

P is for Palaeontology
Known in South Africa as the Cradle of Humankind, the region of Sterkfontein, Swartkrans, Kromdraai and environs has one of the world's richest concentrations of hominid fossils, evidence of human evolution over the last 3.5-million years.
Found in the provinces of Gauteng and North West, the fossil sites cover an area of 47 000 hectares. The remains of ancient forms of animals, plants and hominids - our early ancestors and their relatives - are captured in a bed of dolomite deposited 2.5-billion years ago. Although other sites in south and east Africa have similar remains, the Cradle has produced more than 950 hominid fossil specimens.

Sites in the area supply crucial information about members of one of the oldest hominids, the australopithecines - two-footed, small-brained primates that appeared about 5-million years ago.
 

Go to SouthAfrica.info Source: SouthAfrica.info
The all-in-one official guide
and web portal to South Africa.  
 
Recipe Requests

Looking for a specific South African recipe? Email me and I will do my best to find it for you! 
 
The Recipes

Fillet Steaks with Creamy Sauce
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 beef fillet steaks, 200g - 250g each
salt & pepper
3 tablespoons bourbon or good quality brandy
2 small cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon assorted multicolored peppercorns, crushed
1/4 teaspoon dried leaf oregano
1/4 teaspoon dried leaf basil
1/8 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup whipping cream
1 1/2 tablespoons sour cream
hot cooked rice or baked potatoes
fresh chopped parsley, optional

1. Heat olive oil in a medium skillet over high heat until hot.
2. Sprinkle fillet steaks with salt and pepper.
3. Sear fillet steaks on both sides in frying pan.
4. Remove from pan, and place on a rack in a grill pan.
5. Grill 10-12cm from heat (leave door just a bit ajar) 4 to 6 minutes on each side or until meat is to your doneness.
6. Add bourbon to drippings in pan, bring to a boil over medium heat, and deglaze pan, scraping browned bits that cling to bottom.
7. Add minced garlic, peppercorns, basil, oregano, and salt; cook 1 minute.
8. Add whipping cream; bring to a boil, and cook 6 to 7 minutes or until sauce is reduced by half.
9. Remove from heat, whisk in sour cream, and spoon sauce over steaks.
10.Serve with rice or baked potatoes. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley, if desired.
Yield: 2 servings.

Brie and Apple Stuffed Chicken Breasts
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tart apple, cored, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon dried leaf thyme, divided
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
3/4 cup apple cider, divided
120g Brie cheese, without rind, cut in small chunks
4 medium chicken breast halves, bone-in, with skin (1kg)

1. Heat oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat.
2. Add onion; cook until quite tender, about 7 to 8 minutes.
3. Add chopped apple, 1/2 teaspoon thyme, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper and 1/4 cup cider; cook until apples are tender, about 4 to 6 minutes.
4. Remove from heat and let cool slightly,
5. Stir in Brie.
6. Divide stuffing into 4 equal portions.
7. Heat oven to 200°C
8. Run fingers under breast skin to separate from meat.
9. Put 1/4 of the stuffing under the skin of each chicken breast; press gently to distribute filling evenly under skin.
10. Season chicken with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
11. Place in baking dish.
12. Bake at 200°C until chicken is tender and juices run clear when pierced with a fork, about 35 to 45 minutes.
13. Remove chicken to serving dish and keep warm.
14. Prepare sauce: Skim fat from baking dish and spoon drippings into small saucepan.
15. Heat over medium heat.
16. Add remaining 1/2 cup apple cider; simmer briskly to reduce by half.
17. Stir in remaining 1/2 teaspoon thyme and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Spoon over chicken.
Serves 4.

Bacon Wrapped Pork Tenderloin
1 pork tenderloin, cleaned and trimmed
3 slices of bacon
1 tablespoon of garlic powder
1 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon dried crumbled leaf basil
1/2 teaspoon dried crumbled leaf oregano
1 teaspoon black pepper
olive oil

1. Combine garlic powder, seasoned salt, basil, oregano, and black pepper; rub seasoning all over the pork tenderloin.
2. Wrap pork with bacon and secure with toothpicks.
3. Take your olive oil and coat well.
4. Place in a 23x33 pan and bake uncovered in a 180°C - 200°C for 45 to 60 minutes. Make sure the bacon is really done.
5. Remove and wrap in foil. Let stand for 10 minutes before slicing.
This pork tenderloin recipe serves 2 to 4

Mango Pork
2 medium ripe mangoes
1 Pork fillet, about 500g
cooking spray or olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
hot pepper sauce

1. Put pulp of 1 mango in food processor or blender.
2. Cut the other mango into small cubes.
3. Trim pork fillet and slice into 2.5cm thick medallions.
4. Flatten slices lightly with hand.
5. Spray a skillet or medium saucepan with cooking spray or add a small amount of olive oil and heat on medium-high.
6. Brown pork for 1 minute on each side.
7. Season each side with salt and pepper to taste.
8. Reduce heat and cook pork another 5 minutes to cook through.
9. Remove to a plate and add mango puree to the skillet or saucepan.
10. Cook puree about, scraping up brown bits of pork, for about 30 seconds.
11. Add several drops of hot sauce and the mango cubes.
12. Toss cubes in puree while heating through.
13. Spoon sauce over pork and serve with pasta or hot cooked rice.
Serves 2.

Herb Baked Salmon
vegetable oil spray
500g salmon fillet
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/4 cup parsley, fresh, chopped
1 teaspoon oregano, dried
1/2 teaspoon thyme, dried
1/2 cup plain bread crumbs
salt and pepper to taste
1 egg white

1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
2. Line a baking tray with foil and spray with vegetable oil spray,
3. Wash salmon, pat dry, and spread mustard over the top.
4. Mix parsley, oregano, thyme and bread crumbs together.
5. Season with salt and pepper.
6. Blend in egg white to bind mixture together.
7. Spread over mustard. Bake in oven for 20 to 25 minutes, depending on thickness of fillets.
8. Remove from oven and serve on individual plates with rice.
Serves 2.

Rib Steaks with Garlic Marinade
4 rib eye steaks
1 1/2 cups soy sauce
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tablespoon dry mustard
1 tablespoon coarsely ground pepper

1. Mix soy sauce, garlic, mustard, and pepper in a shallow baking dish or marinade pan.
2. Add steaks to marinade, cover and refrigerate for 3-5 hours.
3. Grill to desired doneness

Apple Crisp for Two
2 cups peeled, cored, and sliced apples
1/2 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
1/4 cup cake flour
1/4 cup oats
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3 tablespoons soft butter

1. Place apples in a buttered loaf pan.
2. Combine brown sugar, flour, oats, cinnamon, nutmeg, and butter and mix until crumbly, then sprinkle over apples.
3. Bake at 180°C for about 30 minutes, or until apples are tender and topping is nicely browned.
4. Serve warm with ice cream or whipped topping.
Serves 2.

Chocolate Mousse
1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
1 tablespoon cold water
2 tablespoons boiling water
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup cocoa
1 cup whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
chocolate curls

1. In a small bowl sprinkle unflavored gelatin over the cold water; let stand 1 minute.
2. Add the boiling water, stirring, until gelatin is dissolved.
3. In a separate bowl combine the sugar, cocoa, whipping cream, and vanilla; stir to blend.
4. Beat on medium speed of electric mixer, scraping the bottom of the bowl a few times, until the mixture is stiff.
5. Add the gelatin mixture and beat until well blended.
6. Spoon the chocolate mousse into dessert dishes or glasses.
7. Sprinkle mousse with chocolate curls, if desired.
8. Chill for at least 1 hour before serving.
Makes 4 servings.

Bananas with Vanilla Rum Sauce
4 medium firm, ripe bananas, peeled and split lengthwise
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
500ml vanilla ice cream, softened
1 to 2 tablespoons light rum

1. Melt butter in a large frying pan over low heat.
2. Add sugar; stir until melted.
3. Add bananas; sauté for about 10 minutes, until just tender, turning once.
4. In a medium bowl, stir together ice cream and rum.
5. Remove bananas to a serving dish, spooning brown sugar juices over them.
6. Serve with ice cream and rum sauce.
Serves 4.

Strawberry Fridge Pie
1 pie crust (23cm), baked
90g cream cheese, softened
1 litre fresh strawberries
3/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons maizena
1/3 cup water
250ml whipping cream, whipped

1. Spread softened cream cheese over the bottom of the cooled pie crust.
2. Hull, wash, and drain berries, reserving 8 whole berries for topping; halve the remaining berries.
3. Place half of the berries over the cream cheese.
4. In a saucepan, combine sugar, maizena, and water; add remaining halved berries.
5. Over medium heat, bring to a simmer and cook until thickened; cool thoroughly and pour over strawberries in the pie crust.
6. Top with whipped cream and garnish with the remaining 8 whole strawberries.
7. Chill thoroughly before serving.
 

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