Number 181

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June 30th, 2010



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Greetings everyone!  And a special welcome to all the new subscribers!  Why not ask your email contacts if they don't want to subscribe as well?

We have just returned from visits to Ukuthula Lodga in Rooiberg and Modumela Lodge in Botswana. Scroll down for more info and photos.

The recipe freebie this time is an eBook with the yummiest chicken recipes, scroll down to the freebie section and add it to your recipe collection. If you have missed out on the recipe book freebies that accompany each newsletter click here to go to the archives and download to your heart's content.

Do you like meat pies and gravy? Scroll down and complete my survey. I will from now on have a similar survey in each letter.

Its still mid winter here so in the recipe section I have some more soup recipes - enjoy!

We have just come back from a week in Kruger Park and early in June we will be off to Modumela resort in Botswana. Story and photos in the next issue.

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.

US$ 87,000,000, US$252,000,000, USD$143,000,000, US$158,000,000, US$15,000,000, the aforementioned amounts are the current jackpots on overseas Lotto's. Click on the banner to the right and get yourself some tickets. It's completely safe and who knows, your life could just change drastically, first time players also get a free ticket!

SA Food and Good in other countries

Click the link below for your favourite SA goodies


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

Cuppa Joe 
This blog doesn’t usually position itself as a market commentator, come to think of it this blog doesn’t actually position itself as anything in particular but if you are as fond of a decent cup of coffee as I am then I think it is only fair to let you know what is going on in the coffee world at the moment. There is good news and bad news. The bad news is that poor harvests in Vietnam and central America plus speculators covering their positions have caused a leap in cost of robusta coffee. Vietnam, in case you didn’t know it, is the world’s second largest producer of coffee and crops are roughly 20% lower this year than last year. This has led to the cost of coffee rising 20% in the last week alone which will soon be reflected in the price you pay in the supermarket. The good news is that this robusta coffee bean is the one used for instant coffee. You and I, lovers of good coffee, of course only drink arabica so we should be safe at least for a while depending on how the forthcoming Brazilian harvest turns out. Please resist the temptation to stock up since good coffee doesn’t improve with age and bad coffee only improves with the addition of large amounts of alcohol.

Holidays - Make your reservations with ACT Travel

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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.

Guidelines in managing ADD/ADHD

In the last newsletter I gave some basic information about Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and motivated why parents should consider supporting a child suffering from ADHD with medication. 

On request of a reader I would like to clarify what the difference between ADHD and ADD is. ADD is the abbreviation for Attention Deficit Disorder and usually it refers to the person who suffers from distractibility which is focussed inward - the medical term is an “inattentive type”. This is the child who is often described as “a dreamer” or “fuddle-headed”. These children are often worse off that the hyperactive child because her barrier remains “under the radar” of parents and teachers for so long but the impact on her academic progress can be just severe.

In ADHD (the medical term is hyperactive-impulsive type), there are two types of behaviours that are seen: the one is the “tornado” and the other is “the fidgety type”. One should not confuse these behaviours with age-appropriate behaviour for example a four-year old child must and will be “constantly on the go” from time to time. 

Any of the above-mentioned three types of behaviours can interfere grossly with a child’s academic progress and social relationships. ADD/ADHD usually becomes apparent when the child enters school. When the child’s distractibility is a barrier to learning and academic progress or when the child’s behaviour impacts negatively on relationships, parents should take note and consider seeing an expert.

Before parents consider medication for a child they must have a neuro-psychological assessment done by a reputable educational psychologist and psychiatrist/ paediatrician. The psychologist should do a comprehensive assessment of the child at school and consult with teachers. She will also do a neurodevelopmental assessment with the child and consult with parents. The psychologist will assess if the child suffers from a barrier to learning, psychological and emotional trauma or ADD/ADHD (please see my previous piece on ADD/ADHD). So very often medication, like Ritalin, is prescribed wrongly because the child display ADD/ADHD-like symptoms.

If the psychologist finds that the child suffers from the “real ADD/ADHD” she will then refer the child to a trustworthy psychiatrist or paediatrician if the parents do not have a preference of their own. The psychiatrist or paediatrician will then do his own concise assessment and use the comprehensive assessment done by the psychologist to assist the child with medication.

ADHD/ADD is usually accompanied by several related problems, such as Oppositional Defiant Disorder, Conduct Disorder, Learning barriers or Mood and Anxiety Disorders, which must be addressed.

ADHD/ADD cannot be cured but it can be managed successfully. Research has proven that medication alone will not guarantee that a child with ADD/ADHD overcome her barriers. She needs life skills, techniques and strategies to become optimally functional. The educational psychologist will also be able to support the child with life skills, the parents with guidance and techniques, and the teachers with strategies. There are also wonderful support groups where parents and experts exchange tips and strategies in order to support each child effectively.

Greetings from heart to heart. 

You are welcome to comment or send questions to her at   

South African Folkolore

Check out my new page with South African folklore

The Mrs Ball's Chutney story

Mrs Ball’s Chutney comes home 
Jennifer Stern

For South Africans abroad, there’s nothing quite like the taste of the mother country to bring on a wave of homesickness. Ouma rusks, Chappies bubble gum, biltong and boerewors are all sold in speciality shops across the world for the South African expat community. And probably the most iconic taste of all is that of Mrs HS Ball’s Chutney.

Manufactured in Johannesburg and exported to the UK, Australia, New Zealand and Germany, the chutney is a slightly sweet and spicy sauce made from apricots and peaches. 

It’s an essential accompaniment to a good curry or braai, it’s great on cheese sandwiches, and bobotie is unthinkable without it. 

Like many icons, it has its mythology, not all of which is true. According to Desmond Ball, the great-grandson of the original Mrs HS Ball, the real story is a little different from the version to be found on Unilever’s website. 

According to Ball, it all started in 1852 when Henry James Adkins married Elizabeth Sarah Spalding in King William’s Town, settling in the nearby village of Fort Jackson to run a general dealership. He was a pretty humble man, Desmond says, not a ship’s captain, as the Unilever website claims, and the couple were never romantically shipwrecked together.

Sarah Adkins started making chutney commercially in about 1870. But she was no great shakes at brand-building, burdening her delicious condiment with the label, “Mrs Henry Adkins Senior, Colonial Chutney Manufacturer, Fort Jackson, Cape Colony.”

The Adkinses had seven sons and four daughters, one of whom was Amelia. Amelia married Herbert Saddleton Ball, a superintendent on the railways, and they moved to Johannesburg - taking her mother’s chutney recipe with her.

On HS Ball’s retirement the family moved to Cape Town, where Amelia started producing her mother’s chutney on a home-industry scale. 

“She was a tough old cookie,” says Desmond. “She had seven children, Herbert Saddleton Junior, Thomas, Clemm, Henry (who was called Harry), Harold (who was not called Harry), Ernest, and Mildred – the only daughter. Thomas died young.”

The Balls moved to the pretty coastal town of Fish Hoek, building or buying four houses within walking distance of each other. Mr and Mrs Ball senior lived in one, and sons Harold, Harry and Ernest in the others with their families. Here Mrs Ball started increasing her production. Meanwhile, her sister Florence and brother Harold carried on making Adkins Chutney, which they had inherited from their mother. 

“It caused quite a lot of strife,” says Desmond. “Here were these two sisters, both making chutney, in direct competition with each other.”

The power of marketing
Amelia’s husband would take a few bottles every day by train into Cape Town to sell. It was on one of these sales trips that he met Fred Metter, a food importer. Metter started marketing the chutney, and improved sales so much that production could not be accommodated in the Fish Hoek house. The factory was moved three times, each time to bigger premises, eventually ending up in Diep River.

The youngest son, Herbert Saddleton Junior, sold his share of the business to Metter, who again increased sales to such an extent that the factory moved for the last time to bigger premises in Retreat. But it remained a family business, with the three brothers Harry, Harold and Ernest retaining their share.

“I used to go to the factory and work in the holidays,” says Desmond Ball. “Edward Ball, my uncle, was the manager. He is now 82. And he made chutney from the time he left school. That’s all he ever did.

“In those days we only made the original recipe. There was only one flavour. But my uncle Harry liked things with a bit of a bite. I remember him crushing a chilli and putting it into the chutney to make it a bit hotter and that’s how Mrs Ball’s Hot Chutney came about.

“Then Fred Metter decided that peach chutney would sell,” says Ball. “So we added that to the line-up. It’s milder and sweeter.

“When the main shareholders started getting on a bit, they sold the business to Brooke Bond Oxo, who later sold it to Unilever Foods, who still own the brand today.”

Meantime Florence and Harold had sold Adkins Chutney to Warne Bros, who later sold it to Iona Products, and it finally went out of production in the 1970s. It was all a question of marketing. Same recipe, same chutney, but different brands. Adkins has been lost to memory, and Mrs Ball’s is a household name across the world.

Full circle
Desmond Ball still lives near Fish Hoek, where, he says, “People would stop me in the street and say the chutney doesn’t taste the same. They’ve changed the recipe.

“We’ve been making chutney for five generations, and I want to keep the family tradition alive,” he says.

Giving in to the demands of his neighbours, Ball dug up the old family recipe, kept from his days working in the factory as a boy, and started manufacturing on a small scale and selling it at the Porter Estate Produce Market in Tokai and the Triangle Market in Fish Hoek. 

“I make the original recipe, the hot and the peach,” he says. “And I also make a hotter chilli one, too. People’s tastes have changed and a lot of people like really hot stuff now.”

Ball has called his chutney Amelia’s Chutney, in honour of his great-grandmother.

“A lot of people don’t realise she was a real live person,” he says. “That’s why I’ve put her picture on my bottle, so people can see what she looked like.”

Amelia Ball died on 11 November 1962, at the age of 97. But her name lives on – on the millions of Mrs HS Ball’s Chutney labels, and on the less ubiquitous Amelia’s Chutney. Her descendants are determined to keep the legend alive.

612g dried peaches
238g dried apricots
3 L Brown grape vinegar
2 ½ kg white sugar
500g onions – chopped
120g salt
75g cayenne pepper  (this sounds a bit much to me? Try lesser amount first - Peter)
75g hot chilies – chopped

1. Soak fruits in vinegar overnight
2. Cook fruits in vinegar until soft – drain – cut
3. Dissolve all the sugar in some of the vinegar
4. Add fruits, sugar and onions in pot with vinegar
5. Add salt, cayenne pepper and chilies
6. Cook for 2 ½ hours


Meat pies and gravy - survey

We were discussing meatpies and gravy with chips recently and we remembered the pies you could get at the mezzanine restaurant at Johannesburg station years ago. Where in SA can you still find those yummy homemade pies with gravy and proper "slap chips"? Email me and I will put the list up in the next letter. If you are overseas and get great pies and gravy, give me those details as well.


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South African English

A new section to the newsletter, by Mary Alexander
English has been spoken in South Africa for over 200 years, at least since the British seized the Cape of Good Hope territory in 1795.
Over the centuries the language has evolved into a distinct dialect, with a vocabulary strongly influenced by indigenous languages.
The strongest influence is probably from Afrikaans, a local language that developed out of Dutch. But there are also significant influences from African languages such as isiZulu, isiXhosa, Sesotho, and the Khoisan and Nama languages.
Here and there are words imported from other British and Dutch colonies, such as India and Indonesia, as well as from the languages of other immigrants, such as Portuguese and Greek.
According to South Africa’s 2001 census, English is spoken as a home language by 8.2% of the population, one in three of whom are not white.
Roughly half the population is estimated to have a speaking knowledge of the language.
Below is a glossary of the more common words unique to South African English.

I am going through the alphabet, starting with A.

dagga (dach-ah) – noun, informal – Marijuana. From the Afrikaans, originally from the Khoikhoi dachab.

dagha (dugg-ah) – noun – Building mortar or plaster traditionally made with mud mixed with cow-dung and blood. Today it also refers to regular cement mortar and plaster. From the isiZulu and isiXhosa udaka (clay, mud).

dassie – noun – Rock hyrax or Cape hyrax (Procavia capensis), a small herbivore that lives in mountainous habitats. From the Afrikaans das (badger).

deurmekaar (dee-oor-muh-car) – adjective, informal – Confused, disorganised or stupid, from the Afrikaans word of the same meaning. In that language deur means “through” or “throughout”; mekaar means “each other” or “one another”.

dinges (ding-us) – noun, informal – Thing, thingamabob, whatzit, whatchamacallit, whatsizname or person with a forgotten name, as in: “When is dinges coming around?” From the Afrikaans and Dutch ding (thing).

doek (like book) – noun – Woman’s head scarf. From the Afrikaans.

dolos – noun – Blocks of concrete in an H-shape, with one arm rotated through 90º. The dolos is a South African invention, with the interlocking blocks piled together to protect harbour seawalls and preserve beaches from erosion. The word comes from the Afrikaans for the knuckle bones in a sheep’s leg. The plural is dolosse.

dompas – noun – Passbook black South Africans were required by law to carry at all times in urban areas during the apartheid era. From the Afrikaans dom (dumb, stupid) and pas (pass).

donga – noun – Ditch or deep fissure caused by severe soil erosion. From the isiZulu and isiXhosa udonga.

donner (dor-nuh) – verb, informal – Hit, beat up. From the Afrikaans donder (thunder). See bliksem.

dop (dawp) – noun and verb, informal – Small tot of alcoholic drink. Also failure: “I dopped the test.” From the Afrikaans.

dorp – noun – Small rural town. From the Afrikaans and Dutch dorp (village).

droewors (droo-uh-vors) – noun – Dried boerewors, similar to biltong. From the Afrikaans droe (dry) and wors (sausage).

Durbs – noun, informal – The city of Durban.

dwaal (dwarl) – noun and verb, informal – Lack of concentration or focus: “Sorry, I was in a bit of a dwaal. Could you repeat that?” Or, as a verb: “I was dwaaling down the street, going nowhere.” From the Afrikaans for err, wander or roam.



Right click here and download your Chicken recipe eBook. Just be aware that the book is rather large at 2.32 MB and might take some time to download on a slow line.

Weird remedies

I have been collecting Traditional South African Home Remedies (Boererate) for a few years now, mainly to preserve an old tradition. Some are funny but some actually work and have been used since the 1800's when doctors were not easy to come by and people had to make do with what they had. I will be featuring some of the weirder ones in this and future letters. These are for information only, I accept no responsibility if something should go wrong!

HALITOSIS...(Unpleasant smelling breath) Add 1 teaspoon of honey and a pinch of cinnamon to a glass of warm water and gargle every morning…it will keep your breath fresh throughout the day
HALITOSIS...(Unpleasant smelling breath) For garlic breath… take ¼ glass of water and add ½ teaspoon of vanilla essence and warm in the microwave. Luke warm will do. Drink to disguise unpleasant garlic breath.
HALITOSIS…(Unpleasant smelling breath) After a meal with garlic…chew on Parsley…it will freshen your breath and disguise the garlic smell.
HALITOSIS…(Unpleasant smelling breath) After you have eaten garlic take 2 tablespoons of vanilla essence. It is very bitter but will refresh your breath and disguise any unpleasant
smelling breath.
HALITOSIS…(Unpleasant smelling breath) Chew coffee beans.
HALITOSIS…(Unpleasant smelling breath) Gargle with a mixture of peroxide and water to successfully refresh your breath.
HALITOSIS…(Unpleasant smelling breath) Gargle with Lewensessens or Parsley water…or chew freshly picked Parsley.
HALITOSIS…(Unpleasant smelling breath) If you have eaten garlic…chew on some cardamom seed in their shells. When soft remove the shells and swallow the seeds. It helps to disguise the garlic smell.
HALITOSIS…(Unpleasant smelling breath) Infuse Parsley in water…strain and gargle.
HALITOSIS…(Unpleasant smelling breath) Mix 1 lb of honey...2 small bottles of glycerine and ½ a bottle of brandy together. Take 1 tablespoon full when necessary.
HALITOSIS…(Unpleasant smelling breath) Mix 1 small tin of snuff and 1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda and use regularly.
HALITOSIS…(Unpleasant smelling breath) To freshen your breath…chew a couple of cloves.

The best remedy yet, make sure both you and your partner eat garlic!

Words to live by 

The probability of someone watching you is proportional to the stupidity of your action.

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Glenacres Superspar Recipe

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

This recipe sounded too good not to put in :-)

Gooey Chocolate Pudding

125g butter, cut up
100g caster sugar
125g semisweet or dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
2 large eggs and 2 large egg yolks
2 tsp flour

1. Preheat the oven to 200°C and grease 4 small ramekins with 1 Tbsp of the butter and sprinkle with icing sugar, shaking out the excess
2. Melt the chocolate and remaining 7 Tbsp butter in a double boiler over barely simmering water - set aside
3. Beat the eggs, egg yolks and remaining caster sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at high speed until pale and thick
4. Use a large rubber spatula to fold the chocolate mixture and flour into the beaten eggs
5. Pour the mixture evenly into the prepared ramekins
6. Bake for about 10 minutes, or until set
7. Serve warm with cream

Find your way around South Africa

With this really informative map, just click here:

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

Subscribe to my Afrikaans newsletter . Visit my Afrikaans website. Recipes and freebie with each newsletter.
Smile a While

I was a very happy man. 
My wonderful girlfriend and I had been dating for over a year, and so we decided to get married.
There was only one little thing bothering me...It was her beautiful younger sister.
My prospective sister-in-law was twenty-two, wore very tight miniskirts, and never wore a bra.
She would regularly bend down when she was near me, and I always got more than a nice view.
It had to be deliberate, because she never did it when she was near anyone else.
One day her 'little' sister called and asked me to come over to check the wedding invitations.
She was alone when I arrived, and she whispered to me that she had feelings and desires for me that she couldn't overcome. 
She told me that she wanted me just once before I got married and committed my life to her sister.
Well, I was in total shock, and couldn't say a word. 
She said, 'I'm going upstairs to my bedroom, and if you want one last wild fling, just come up and get me. 
I was stunned and frozen in shock as I watched her go up the stairs.
I stood there for a moment, then turned and made a beeline straight to the front door. 
I opened the door, and headed straight towards my car. 
Lo... and behold, my entire future family was standing outside, all clapping 
With tears in his eyes, my father-in-law hugged me and said, "We are very happy that you have passed our little test. We couldn't ask for a better man for our daughter. Welcome to the family."

And the moral of this story is:
Always keep your condoms in your car!

Drafting Guys over 60

I am over 60 and the Armed Forces thinks I'm too old to track down terrorists. You can't be older than 42 to join the military. They've got the whole thing ass-backwards.. Instead of sending 18-year olds off to fight, they ought to take us old guys. You shouldn't be able to join a military unit until you're at least 35..
For starters: Researchers say 18-year-olds think about sex every 10 seconds. Old guys only think about sex a couple of times a day, leaving us more than 28,000 additional seconds per day to concentrate on the enemy.
Young guys haven't lived long enough to be cranky, and a cranky soldier is a dangerous soldier. 'My back hurts! I can't sleep, I'm tired and hungry' We are impatient and maybe letting us kill some asshole that desperately deserves it will make us feel better and shut us up for a while.
An 18-year-old doesn't even like to get up before 10 a.m. Old guys always get up early to pee so what the hell. Besides, like I said, 'I'm tired and can't sleep and since I'm already up, I may as well be up killing some fanatical son-of-a-bitch.
If captured we couldn't spill the beans because we'd forget where we put them. In fact, name, rank, and serial number would be a real brainteaser.
Boot camp would be easier for old guys.. We're used to getting screamed and yelled at and we're used to soft food. We've also developed an appreciation for guns. We've been using them for years as an excuse to get out of the house, away from the screaming and yelling.
They could lighten up on the obstacle course however. I've been in combat and didn't see a single 20-foot wall with rope hanging over the side, nor did I ever do any pushups after completing basic training.
Actually, the running part is kind of a waste of energy, too. I've never seen anyone outrun a bullet.
An 18-year-old has the whole world ahead of him. He's still learning to shave, to start up a conversation with a pretty girl.. He still hasn't figured out that a baseball cap has a brim to shade his eyes, not the back of his head.
These are all great reasons to keep our kids at home to learn a little more about life before sending them off into harm's way..
Let us old guys track down those dirty rotten coward terrorists. The last thing an enemy would want to see is a couple of million pissed off old farts with attitudes and automatic weapons who know that their best years are already behind them.

Tips 'n Tricks

Handy Hints for the

The many, many uses for Turpentine in your Home

Turpentine (also called spirit of turpentine, oil of turpentine, wood turpentine, gum turpentine, white spirit) is a fluid obtained by the distillation of resin obtained from trees, mainly pine trees. It is composed of terpenes. It is sometimes known colloquially as turps, but this more often refers to turpentine substitute(or mineral turpentine).

Burns on Wooden Floors & Furniture:
 If the burn isn't all the way through the wood, you might be able to remove enough of the burn to make it less noticeable. For small burns use a cotton bud dipped in turps. If the char still remains, use some superfine steel wool and rub gently. If small indentations are left in the wood, fill it up with clear nail polish, building it up slowly with several layers until it is flat and smooth again.
Candle Wax: 
To remove hardened candle wax from candlesticks, first remove as much as possible with a hair dryer and wooden ice lolly stick, then rub gently with a soft cloth dipped in turps until all the wax residue has vanished. Polish with old pantyhose.
Soot Stains on Carpeting: Apply a little turps and scrub gently, then shampoo the carpet.
Felt Tip Markers: 
Wipe with a clean cloth moistened with turps.
Garden Tools: 
Wipe wooden handles of garden tools with a mixture of equal parts vinegar, boiled linseed oil and turps. This will help keep the handles from becoming brittle and breaking. To remove rust from garden tools, scrub them with a steel wool pad that has been dipped in turps.
To remove pen ink from your pocket, place the stain face down on white paper towel. Put plastic in the pocket to prevent the ink from leaking through and staining the surface you are working on. Blot with a cloth moistened with turps, rinse with water and wash as usual.
Light grime can be removed by wiping with a cloth dampened with turps, then washing with soapy water. Rinse thoroughly.
Scuff Marks on Wooden Floors: 
The heels of shoes often leave scuff marks on your floors. Try rubbing off the marks with a pencil eraser first, but if that doesn't work, rub the floor with a rag dipped in turps.
To treat for dryness and cracking, you can use 1 part turps to 2 parts boiled linseed oil on all natural-fibre wicker, except for bamboo. Apply with a clean paint brush, using as much solution as the wicker will absorb. Wipe off any excess and allow to dry. 

Thanks to the Glenacres Superspar Newsletter. Click here to subscribe.

Some great resorts we have visited

We visited Ekuthuleni, click here for my report and some pictures.
You can also see some more photos here

Since Ekuthuleni we have also been to Hazyview Cabanas, for my write-up and pictures click here

We are just back from a really nice trip to Mozambique - Morrumbene Beach Resort

We have just returned from a glorious week at Mnarani Club, Kilifi, Kenya

We also had a really nice stay at Hole in the Wall and Caribbean Estates

Beacon Wharf in Mossel Bay, Eagles Nest in Sedgefield, and Ocean 11 in Mossel Bay

In June 2010 we visited Ukuthula and Modumela in Botswana. Click the links for stories and photos

The Wild Side

Yellow Billed Stork

Photo by Anna Eksteen
click to see larger image

Physical description
Adult males have a smooth forehead and their face is orangey-red. Their bills are long and thick at the base. It is also slightly curved at the tip and bright yellow, hence their name. Their necks are also long and slender and greyish white. The rest of their body including their back, belly and breast is solid white with a small hint of pink on the tips of their feathers. Their tail and wing quills are black. Their legs vary from a dark red to a light pink colour and are long and skinny. It's hard to believe that their legs can support their plump, round bodies. The female are very similar to the male, however the males are smaller.

Special Adaptations
They have remarkable adaptation. These birds are known to have the quickest muscular reflex of the neck, allowing almost all food to be caught in the water. Their long, narrow, curve tipped bills allow them only to catch small prey such as small fish, frogs, insects and worms passing by in the water. Yellowbilled storks are intelligent birds. These birds created a technique to help them catch more prey in the water. They typically use one foot to stir up the water or mud which disturbs and flushes out the prey. Then they submerge their heads quickly in the water snapping their bills on small prey. Yellowbilled stork's bills are great fishing tools.

Social Organization
They do not flock in large social groups. They do not socialise much with one another either. These wading birds like to isolate themselves in swamps, muddy rivers and other large areas of shallow, marshy waters. They move around slowly and deliberately. They are extremely inactive, they rest and feed for most of the day.

Reproductive Behaviour
The female approaches the courtship among the male birds. Together they build a bulky nest made of sticks and the male chooses where the nest is to be built. The pair work vigorously together to build a nest and can do so within 7-10 days. These nests are usually built high in trees away from predators. The storks breed almost year round. At breeding colonies the storks make a hissing sound. Incubation period can last up to 30 days and between 2-3 eggs are laid on alternate days.

Words and photo by Anna Eksteen, click here to see more photos on her TrekNature page.

Zimbabwe update

For the latest on happenings in Zimbabwe, go to:  and subscribe to their newsletter, a really good source of current information

Cathy Buckle has started writing again from Zimbabwe, her letter is below.

Here is Cathy's letter:

Dear Family and Friends,

Its taken eleven years, cost thousands of lives, driven a third of our population out of the country and left a destroyed economy, but we have finally got back to where we were in 1999.
The outreach programme to consult the people about what they want in  a new constitution is about to begin. Once again, eleven years later, the voiceless have a voice. 

What a time it's been, these eleven years, since last we aired our views about the principles we want to guide our lives. Its a time we will never forget and yet a time we would rather not remember. 

For those of us who have managed to stay in the country during the eleven years since we last tried to rewrite our constitution, there is a distinct feeling of exhaustion in the air. There is hope too, but it is tempered with scepticism and fears of interference. The question on most people's lips is: will our wishes be respected this time round or will they be tampered with, at the last minute, by the highest of the high, the way they were in 1999.

For a third of our population (at least four million people) who have been forced to try and survive outside the country for the last decade, one of the burning issues is undoubtedly going to be that of
dual citizenship. Four million people who have lived as strangers in strange lands, worked all hours of the day and night doing menial jobs that no one else would do and sent every penny that they have earned back to Zimbabwe in order to keep their extended families alive. If and when these four million people come home, they will not want to give up their foreign passports and so they will be classed as aliens when they come home. They will no longer be allowed to vote and will have that ugly word 'Alien' typed onto their Zimbabwean ID cards.
A word which is defined as meaning unfriendly, unacceptable, unfamiliar, repugnant.

Multiple hundreds of thousands of people inside Zimbabwe have already had the Alien badge hung around their necks this last few years. People who were born, raised and educated here; people who have lived, worked and paid taxes here all their lives; people who have homes and businesses here; people who have invested here - all are known as aliens if their parents were not born in Zimbabwe and if they are not prepared to forfeit the birthright of their parents. The prohibition of dual citizenship in Zimbabwe affects people of all skin colours and races, regardless of where their parents originally came from including countries right next door like Zambia, Malawi or South Africa or further afield from Europe, Asia or America. 

Undoubtedly citizenship will be a talking point in the constitutional outreach. Citizen, after all, means: "a member of a state, either native or naturalized," it does not mean a member of a political party. 

I end this week on a note of congratulations to Ben Freeth awarded an MBE For services to the farming community in Zimbabwe. Thank you Ben, for giving a voice to so many and for so many sacrifices.

Until next week, 
thanks for reading. 
love Cathy
. For information on my new book: "INNOCENT VICTIMS" or my previous
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Recipe Requests

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

Pea and ham soup

Cooking time: 15 min
100 ml butter
2 small leek or onion, finely chopped
1000 g frozen peas
500 g ham, diced
4.0 litre vegetable or chicken stock
salt and freshly ground black pepper
30 ml chopped fresh mint

Melt the butter in a large saucepan and sauté the leek until glossy. Add the peas and diced ham and stir.
Add the stock, bring to the boil and reduce the heat. Simmer for 15 minutes and season with salt and
pepper to taste. Cool the soup slightly and purée half in a food processor. Add to the remaining soup in
the saucepan and add the mint. Repeat and spoon into hot bowls. Serves 12.

Pea soup
750 ml dried peas
23 ml olive oil
2 large onion, chopped
2 bunch soup celery, finely chopped (optional)
150 g bacon or Russian sausages, cut into chunks
3 large potatoes, peeled and diced
3.0 litre water
3 chicken stock cubes
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
3 Russian sausages, sliced into rings (optional)

Soak the peas in cold water overnight. Rinse and drain. Cover with fresh water, bring to the boil (do not add salt at this stage) and boil for about 10 minutes. Drain the peas once more. Heat the oil in a large saucepan or pressure cooker and fry the onion and celery until glossy. Add the bacon and stir-fry until the bacon is just done. Add the peas, potatoes and water. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for about 2 1/2 hours (pressure cook for about 45 minutes) or until the peas are soft. Mash the peas slightly to make a thick soup, add the stock cubes and salt and pepper to taste. Fry the Russian sausage chunks in a little oil until crisp and add to the soup just before serving. Serves 12.

Popeye's soup
900 g fresh spinach, rinsed
675 g deboned chicken (optional)
180 ml butter
12 spring onions, chopped
90 ml cake dour
3.0 litre chicken stock
300 ml plain yoghurt (optional)

Strip the spinach leaves off the hard stalks and shred them finely. Lightly season the chicken with salt
and pepper and sauce in the heated butter until cooked. Remove the chicken from the pan and dice. Set
aside. Sauté the chopped spring onion in the butter until soft. Add the spinach and stir-fry for about 3
minutes. Add the cake flour. Mix well and then slowly add the chicken stock, stirring continuously. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for about 15 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper if necessary. Add the cooked diced chicken and simmer for about 5 minutes. Pour into soup bowls, adding a dollop of yoghurt to each bowl if desired. Serve with croûtons. Serves 12.

Potato and haddock soup
900 g potatoes, peeled and chopped
50 ml butter
onion, finely chopped
1600 g haddock, skinned
1000 ml fish or chicken stock
1160 ml milk
300 ml cream
30 ml fresh chives

Boil the potatoes in salted water until tender. Drain well and mash. Melt the butter in a large saucepan
and sauté; the onion until tender. Add the haddock, stock and milk and simmer until the fish is done.
Drain and process the fish in a food processor until smooth. Return to the drained milk mixture in the
saucepan, add the mashed potato, cream and chives. Bring to the boil while stirring and season with salt
and pepper if necessary. Serve with fresh bread. Serves 12

Pumpkin soup
1 kg peeled and seeded pumpkin, cubed (peeled weight)
2 onions, chopped
2 thin slices green ginger or stem ginger
1 litre chicken stock
salt and milled black pepper
2 ml grated nutmeg
Pg No: 38
30 ml cake flour
30 ml softened butter
250 ml cream

Combine pumpkin, onion, ginger and stock in a large saucepan. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Cover and simmer
for about 30 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Strain and reserve liquid. Purée vegetables with a little of the liquid.
Mix flour and butter into the purée. Pour back into saucepan with remaining liquid and stir over moderate heat for 1 to 2
minutes, or until soup thickens. (If you prefer a thicker soup, reduce by boiling, uncovered, for 20 to 30 minutes then
continue with recipe.) Add cream, check flavour and adjust seasoning if necessary. Ladle soup into warm bowls and
garnish, if you wish, with swirls of cream and a sprinkling of chopped fresh herbs. Serves 8

Pumpkin soup with sour cream and bacon
Preparation time: 15 min
Cooking time: 40 min
55 g butter
2 medium onions, sliced
900 g peeled pumpkin pieces
4 rashers streaky bacon, chopped
5 ml chopped fresh thyme
5 ml brown sugar
600 ml milk
600 ml chicken or vegetable stock
60 ml sour cream
crusty bread, to serve

Melt the butter in a large saucepan. Add the onions and fry gently for five minutes. Stir in the pumpkin, bacon, thyme and
brown sugar and cook for a few minutes more. Add the milk and stock, then cover and leave to simmer for 30 minutes.
Purée half of the soup, then pour back into the remaining soup to thicken the mixture. Top each serving with 15 ml sour
cream and serve with crusty bread. Serves: 4 Preparation time: 15 minutes Cooking time: 40 minutes Serves 4

Quick butternut soup
Preparation time: 15
Cooking time: 20
40 ml butter
1onion, chopped
pinch of ground cumin
500 g butternut, peeled and cubed
300 ml chicken stock
15-20 ml lemon juice
125 ml cream

Heat the butter in a saucepan.
Add the onion and sauté for 30 seconds.
Add the butternut and chicken stock and bring to the boil.
Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes until the butternut is soft.
Remove from the heat and add the lemon juice and cream.
Pour into a food processor and blend until smooth.
Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Serve with crusty bread. Serves 4

Quick tuna and asparagus soup
410 g asparagus pieces
340 g shredded tuna in brine
65 ml butter
1 small onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, crushed
65 ml cake flour
500 ml hot chicken or vegetable stock
500 ml hot milk
30 ml chopped fresh parsley
salt and lemon pepper

Drain the asparagus and tuna, reserving the liquid. Puree tuna and asparagus and pour the liquid over the mixture. Melt the butter in a large pot and sauté the onion and garlic until soft and aromatic. Stir in the flour and cook for 1 minute.
Remove from the stove and beat in the hot stock and milk. Beat until smooth and return to stove. Heat to boiling point, then add the rest of the ingredients, including the asparagus-tuna mixture. Simmer slowly for 2 minutes and ladle into warmed bowls. Makes 1,5 litres soup.

Real tomato soup
50 g Butter
2 tbsp Olive Oil
4 Onions (finely chopped)
2 Carrots (finely sliced)
5 Garlic Cloves (finely chopped)
4 Whole Tomatoes (tinned)
5 tbsp Tomato Puré e
2 tsp Brown Sugar
2 tsp Sea Salt Flakes
1 tsp Freshly Ground Black Pepper
1.40 litres Homemade Chicken Stock

1. Heat the butter and oil in a large pot over medium heat and sauté the onion, celery, carrot and garlic until soft.
2. Add the tomatoes, tomato purée, sugar, salt and pepper, and cook off the tomatoes until they have melted down and reduced.
3. Add the stock, bring to the boil and simmer for 15 minutes. Add the basil leaves right at the end and process until smooth with a hand-held blender or in batches in a food processor.
4. Stir through the balsamic vinegar and season again to taste (add a splash of Worcestershire sauce if you like). Add the cherry tomatoes and serve warm, garnished with some baby basil leaves. Serves 8

Roasted butternut soup
1 kg butternut
Pg No: 40
30 ml olive oil
1 onion
10 ml ground cumin
1 carrot
1 celery stick
1 l vegetable stock

Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees celcius. Put butternut on a greased baking tray and lightly brush with half olive oil.
Bake for twenty minutes, or until softened and slightly browned around edges.
Heat remaining oil in a large saucepan.
Cook onion and cumin for two minutes, then add carrots and celery and cook for a further three minutes, stirring frequently.
Add roasted butternut and stock. Bring to the boil, reduce heat and simmer for twenty minutes.
Allow to cool a littke befor puréeing in a blender or food processor.
Return soup to pan and gently reheat, without boiling.
Season to taste with salt and black pepper.
Top with cream, and sprinkle with parsley and bladk pepper.
Serve with rolls or bread. Serves 6

Spicy pumpkin soup
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
500 g pumpkin, diced
1 large onion, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, crushed
15 ml oil
5 ml ground cumin
5 ml ground coriander
7 ml (or more to taste) mild curry powder
15 ml fresh coriander
1.10 litres hot chicken stock
50 ml cream
salt and freshly ground black pepper
60 ml sour cream
fresh coriander
roasted pumpkin seeds

Fry the pumpkin, onion and garlic in the oil for 10 minutes.
Add the cumin, coriander, curry powder and fresh coriander and fry for another minute.
Add the hot stock, bring to the boil and simmer for 12 minutes.
Process until smooth, stir in the cream and season to taste with salt and black pepper.
Spoon into heated bowls and garnish with a scoop of sour cream and pumpkin seeds.
Makes 1.2 litres of soup


Two Recipe CD's

These CD's are very popular and I have sold quite a few, if you are overseas you can even pay with Paypal (US$20). Here are the CD details once more. they make an ideal gift and are light and cheap to send to someone by email. Much cheaper than sending 50 recipe books by mail!

I now have two CD's available, one English, one Afrikaans, each with more than 50 recipe Ebooks on them, here is a list of the recipe eBooks on the English CD:

FunkyMunky Traditional South African Recipes - A comprehensive collection of Traditional South African recipes.
Tradisionele Suid Afrikaanse Resepte - Traditional South African Recipes in Afrikaans
Christmas Recipes - A selection of Christmas Recipes for you to try!
101 Camping and Outdoor Recipes - Recipes for you to try next time you go camping
400 Refreshing punch recipes - Some great ideas for liquid refreshment at your next party
Favourite Christmas Cookies - 34 Great cookie recipes for you to enjoy!
Christmas Cookie Recipes - A delicious collection of Christmas Cookie Recipes
A Homemade Christmas - 100 Simple and delicious recipes for your special holiday meals
Holiday Candy and Fudge - 42 Great candy recipes, a hit with kids of all ages!
Kids Fun Recipes - 120 Fun and Delicious Recipes
Delicious Puddings - A Collection of 167 Pudding Recipes
Pumpkin Pie - Pumpkin pies and more!
Salad Recipes - A Collection of Easy to Follow Salad Recipes
Summer Party Cookbook - The name says it all!
Pampercat and Pamperdog - Recipe treats for your feline and canine friends
80 Seasonal Recipes from around the world - A selection of festive recipes from the four corners of the globe!
Crockpot Recipes - In South Africa we would probably call this Potjiekos
International Recipes - A selection of recipes from all over the world
Fish and Game Recipes - A selection of mouthwatering recipes
Lemonade - A large selection of lemonade recipes
Pizzeria - Try some of these great pizza recipes
Casseroles - 17 pages of mouthwatering casserole recipes
Low Fat Recipes - Watching your cholesterol? Then this is for you!
Soup Recipes - Ideal for those cold winter evenings
Chicken Recipes - 300 Delicious Chicken Recipes
Amish Recipes - 65 Tried and True Traditional Amish Recipes
Apple Recipes - Mouth watering apple recipes
Blue Ribbon Recipes - 490 Award Winning Recipes
The Bread Book - The bread and biscuit baker's and sugar boiler's assistant
Chocolate Delights - Deliciously decadent and delightful recipes for the chocaholic in you
Carolina Mountain Cooking - Created from the recipes and memories of two of the Carolina Mountain's most talented cooks.
Egg Recipes - 111 Great Egg Recipes
Great Gifts in a Jar - A personally made gift is usually more appreciated!
Italian Recipes - A collection of 185 delicious Italian dishes
Smoothies - 126 Easy recipes for maximum sports performance
Top Secret Recipes - Top secret famous recipes
Wings - The ultimate chicken wing cookbook
The Barmaster - Essential tips and techniques for bartenders
Be a Grillmaster - How to host the perfect bbq!
101 Good Jam Recipes - Make your own jams, 101 recipes for you to try
Deep Fryer Recipes - 101 Recipes for the Deep Fryer
Frozen Dessert Recipes - From ice cream to yoghurt - 170 pages of mouthwatering recipes.
Recipes from South of the Border - 247 pages of typically Mexican recipes
Various Rice Dishes - 32 Great Rice Dishes
The Appetizer Collection - More than 150 pages of great ideas for appetizers
The Big Book of Cookies - From Almond Bars to Zucchini Bars, they are all here, 233 pages of cookie recipes
Salad Recipes - A Collection of Easy to Follow Salad Recipes
Delicious Diabetic Recipes - A Collection of over 500 yummy recipes.
Cheesecake Recipes - Nearly 100 pages of yummilicious cheesecake recipes!

Bonus eBooks

Something for the gardeners
Organic Secrets - Everything you wanted to know about organic food

Profitable Crafts- Vol 1
Profitable Crafts - Vol 2
Profitable Crafts - Vol 3
Profitable Crafts - Vol 4
20 Vintage Crochet Patterns

Everything you wanted to know about making, marketing and selling your crafts.

Big Fat Lies - A shocking expose of the 12 biggest scams, cover-ups, lies, myths and deceptions
in the diet and weight-loss industries.

10,000 Dreams Interpreted

And here is a list of the recipe eBooks on the Afrikaans CD:

101 Kraakvars slaaie, 101 Onweerstaanbare poedings, 110 Spyskaarte vir die werkende vrou
5 Beste van alle geregte, 217 Egte Afrikaanse resepte, Aartappels, Beskuitresepte, Afrikaanse Resepteverskeidenheid, Brood resepte, Vul die beskuitblik, 'n Broodjie vir die blik, Blokkieskoek, Burgers Patties Frikadelle, Brood resepte, Drankies, Drinkgoed, Gemmerbier, Groente, Eet jou groente, Hoender resepte, Happies en Poffers, Kaaskoek, Ietsie anders resepte, Kerskoeke, Karavaan resepte, Kleinkoekies, Kinderlekkerte, Koekiedrukker resepte, Koeke, Likeur, Lekkergoed resepte, Nog resepte, McCain resepte, Moedersdag resepte
Mikrogolf resepte, Peterjasie se boek, Pastageregte, Peterjasie se Kersresepte versameling
Peterjasie se eBoek van vernoemde resepte, Poeding, Peterjasie se Tradisionele SA resepte
Resepte met biltong, Resepteverskeidenheid - ook grootmaat, Slaaie, Sommer net resepte, Sop in die pot, Sop resepte, Terte, Sous, Verskeie resepte 1, Souttert & Pannekoek, Vis en hoender, Veelsydige hoender, Vleisgeregte vir Kersdag, Verskeie resepte 2, Warm en koue drankies, Vleisresepte, Wille samies, Wafels en Pannekoeke, Wors en worsies


Annette se Boererate, Boererate en Verbruikerswenke, Hartstigting dieet, Lennons medikasie, Mate en gewigte, Sop dieet, S A Boererate eBoek, Metrieke omskakelingstabel, Werk van die huis

Pricing: The CD's are R100 each (R130 for next day Speed Services delivery in SA). Order both and the price is R160. If you prefer the Speed Services option I will give you a parcel tracking number once payment is received.

Click the appropriate link below:

Send me banking details for the English CD
Send me banking details for the Afrikaans CD
Send me banking details for both CD's

Silversands Online casino

We usually go to Carnival City, our local entertainment complex about twice a month for a movie, a good meal and a flutter at the tables or machines. Most times it is crowded and my favourite machines are taken. Then I came across Silversands online casino. You simply sign up, download some software and you can practice with fun money to your heart's content before you play with the real thing.
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I am a member and it works, it is not a get rich quick scheme but with patience it can build up to a useful extra monthly income, it does require a little bit of marketing as well as a low monthly subscription, but, bottom line, it works.
This company is definitely not a scam. Be Motivated Today provides a motivational service and has great motivational products. The CEO, Arnfried Klein-Werner, is an International Motivational Speaker. He has tried and studied many systems that don't work and after 13 years developed a system that actually does work and is creating wealth for many South Africans already. He understands people's fears and therefore offers a 100% money-back guarantee, if you don't make money after 6 months.
You have nothing to lose. I encourage you to visit the website and register to try the products and service out for free. Click here for more information. Register as a free trial member then upgrade to start your income stream.

Children's Stories on CD
Find it hard to get quality children’s stories? Join the popular Anna Emm Story Club in Afrikaans or English, and start adding to your child’s CD collection at an early age! Collect al 96 original stories (on 48 CDs!) over 2 years, or join for a minimum of 3 months - you decide! Receive 2 new CDs with original children’s stories every month! Anna Emm Productions has already produced more than 500 new children’s stories on CD. Click here to join . Ideal gift for children and grandchildren.

Just another reminder to join the Africam fan page on Facebook. They will be posting photos / videos and other udates and articles on the fan page from now.
join at
Also visit the Africam  website

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

Subscribe / Unsubscribe / Contact

To subscribe to this newsletter and view previous newsletters,  click here, to subscribe to my Afrikaans newsletter, click here. To unsubscribe, click on the appropriate link above and unsubscribe or email me at :


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