The Karoo Heartland has a very rich food heritage and one way visitors experience the Eastern Cape Karoo is through meals shared with friends and family, generations-old recipes and the short distance our food travels from field to fork. The Karoo Heartland is thrilled to be hosting a group of Dutch food writers this week as they eat and drink their way through our beautiful region, accompanied by representatives from East Cape Parks & Tourism and the Karoo Heartland, and photographer & blogger My Karoo Life.
Our guests are from “De Telegraaf”, the largest daily newspaper in the Netherlands, “Oog voor Afrika“, a seasonal glossy travel magazine and “Foodies Magazine Netherlands“, a monthly glossy magazine for foodies. We cannot wait to show them our beautiful region, as they do the “Karoo Crawl” road trip visiting towns in the Karoo Heartland, Eastern Cape.
Tney will be visiting the towns of Somerset East, Bedford, Cradock, Nieu-Bethesda and Graaff Reinet as they sip and savour their way through our Karoo food culture. Follow their foodie journey with us on the hashtag #KarooHeartland
Food is a very important part of any Karoo Heartland travel experience. In the Karoo, we share our treasured family recipes, celebrate Slow Food and enjoy the produce of our region around kitchen tables, surrounded by family and friends. Lamb chops, fresh produce, jams and preserves; whether gourmet or country cooking, you’ll love the way we celebrate food.
Mom and daughter team, Lani & Louzel, from Cradock’s own True Living Coffee Shop have been cooking up a storm on the M-Net TV Show, My Kitchen Rules – doing our Karoo Heartland in the Eastern Cape proud. Below is an example of their flavoursome cooking: a familiar favourite of malva pudding, with a modern twist.
2 cups sugar
30ml homemade apricot jam
15ml bicarbonate of soda
45ml ginger brandy
Cream sugar, butter, eggs and apricot jam. Add flour, milk, vinegar, bicarb. Spray the moulds with non stick spray and divide the malva pudding mixture between all the moulds. Bake at 180°C for 30 minutes. For sauce: Combine cream, sugar, milk, vanilla and brandy. Don’t let the sauce boil. Turn off and re-heat if required.
Salted caramel ice cream & salted caramel crumble
2 cups sugar, divided
7 eggs, separated
4 1/2 cups heavy cream
2 cups milk
2 vanilla pods
1t salt flakes
Melt half the sugar to make the caramel. Add half the cream. Spread on a non-stick baking sheet or silpat, sprinkle with salt and let cool. When cooled, bash it in a mortar and pestle to create the crumb. In a double boiler, combine egg yolks & remaining sugar. Cook until thick ribbons form. Heat milk and remaining cream. Temper with egg mix and cook in a saucepan until thickened. Pour through a sieve twice. Cool completely. Add salted caramel and add to ice cream maker to churn. Once frozen, move to freezer in the same mould shapes as you baked the malva pudding in, to get the same shape.
2 large gunger roots, peeled and sliced thinly
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
Skin the Dissolve sugar in water. Bring to boil. Add ginger. Reduce to a candy. Cool.
Place the salted caramel crumb on the plate. Prepare the malva domes by removing some of the centre of the dessert then fill it with the ice cream and place on the crumb. Top with the candied ginger. Pour over the hot sauce.
Fresh and hot from the oven, these scones from Chantelle & Marizanne of Camdeboo Cottages and Karoopark Guesthouse in Graaff Reinet are made with a recipe passed down from their grandmother – it doesn’t get more authentically Karoo than recipes shared through generations. Happy baking!
560g (4 x 250ml) flour
250ml buttermilk or maas
40ml baking powder
80g butter or margarine (Chantelle says she always uses butter)
Pre-heat oven to 240 °C
Mix all dry ingredients together
Rub in butter or margarine, handling as gently and lightly as possible
In a bowl, beat eggs, buttermilk and water together
Add the wet mixture to the dry ingredients, just enough to make a medium-firm dough
Pat out the mixture and cut scones 3cm thick
Place on a greased baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes
Slather with butter, jam, cream or cheese or any combination thereof! Enjoy!
Wrap up in the warm embrace of Karoo Heartland cooking this winter with this irresistable roast lamb recipe from Hillston Farm’s Chef Adrienne Southey.
How to make the easiest roast leg of lamb or mutton:
(mutton has more flavour, so we prefer it, you just have to cook it a bit longer than lamb to get it nice and tender)
Rub the meat with 2 teaspoons of salt and some black pepper.
Place in a roasting dish and pour 1 1/2 cups of water around the meat. Crush 2 cloves of garlic and slice an onion and scatter over the meat along with 3 twigs of rosemary and 7 whole cloves.
Cover and place in the oven at 180’C for 2-3 hours until the meat looks completely irresistible.
ABOUT HILLSTON FARM │MIDDELBURG
At Hillston Farm you’ll experience South African hospitality with a difference – farm style with a touch of class. Beautiful views, excellent photography, scenic hiking trails, more than 100 species of bird life including the rare Blue Korhaan, shearing shed tours (a former English Barracks in the Anglo-Boer War), and much more.