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Winelands Kitchen  Newsletter  #17/2.1
Hello from the Winelands Kitchen
The new year started on a very bad note with all the devastating fires ravaging the Western Cape. Our hearts go out to all those affected and who have suffered massive losses to land and property.

New Year is the perfect time to make a fresh start in the kitchen. I start off by cleaning my kitchen cupboards and drawers. I always clear out all old stale, unused bits of spices from the dry ingredients cupboard and replace with new ones.
Fresh spice makes a big difference to flavour so make it a resolution to start each year with fresh spices!

For many this is the time of year when they make decisions to improve their health in some way. Starting in February I will begin sharing some of my favourite LCHF/Banting recipes with you as well as some good tips and info for those who are considering changing to this lifestyle.

There were a few special days to celebrate in January. Burns Night on 25 January and Chinese New Year on 28 January. And then of course, especially for lovers, i is the month of love with Valentines Day coming up on the 14th February. Read about all these in this newsletter.
Food writer and cook / ShowMe Winelands Kitchen.
Review of the Month: Mellasat Vineyards Pop Up Restaurant 
Mellasat Vineyards and
Pop Up Restaurant
It was the pop-up restaurant during Proe Paarl that brought us to visit Mellasat Vineyards on a hot, perfect summers day in Dec in the Boland.  Once we had been shown the vineyards and the Cemetery of Forgotten Wines we settled in for a wine tasting under the oak trees where a very welcome flirty breeze caressed our bare skin as evening began to set in. 
Read Review here
The people - Stephen and
Janet Richardson
A family run, independent boutique wine estate nestled below the spectacular Du Toits Kloof mountains, this vineyard is the lifelong vision of owner and winemaker Stephen Richardson and his award winning chef wife, Janet. Established during 1996, Mellasat, offers panoramic views of Paarl and its famous granite domes. Read more about this delightful venue.
Meet the Richardson's
Pumpkin Veloute with Confit Chicken Wings & Apple  
When we visited Mellasat Vineyards during the Proe Paarl celebrations I chatted to Chef Janet Richardson about the menu and she agreed to forward a recipe on to me to try out and share with you.  Here is my take on the 3rd course of the 7 course degustation menu Truffled Pumpkin Veloute with Confit Chicken Wings, Poached Apple and crumbled Amaretti Biscuit. Absolutely delicious.
Get the Recipe here
Valentines Day and a Sexy little Salad
Valentines Day in the month of Love
There’s no getting away from it, February is the month to celebrate love. Yes, I know that we must celebrate love every day and not just one day a year but Valentines Day is a day to celebrate and spoil the one you love in special ways, food being one!
Read the article here
Sexy Fig, Citrus, Smoked Salmon and Mozzarella Salad
This is one of my Valentines Day favourites. Figs are in season now, juicy plump and delicious. I often replace the citrus with 2 deliciously sexy peaches, also in season and being harvested now. They make a yummy addition to this salad.
Find the recipe here
Recipes from my kitchen
Oven Baked Camembert with Wine and Thyme
One of those almost aphrodisiacal additions to meal or a picnic basket has to be oven baked gooey camembert cheese, accompanied by little wedges of crusty country bread that you dip into the oozing centre. This is a perfect starter to a Valentines picnic or meal.
Try this Recipe
Chicken & Butternut Curry with Samp & Beans
Samp and beans is utterly delicious served hot with salt and butter and can be served as a main course or as a side dish. Switch it up and serve this delightful, traditional slow cooked dish alongside a hearty, gravy-rich stew or a delicious curry for a memorable meal.
Grab the recipe
Pumpkin Pops with Old Fashioned Butterscotch Sauce
These spicy, puffed up little pumpkin fritters, or pampoen koekies,  are a well-loved family treat in many South African homes. Usually served with cinnamon sugar they are just as delicious drizzled with butterscotch sauce or left plain served alongside a lamb roast
Make this Pudding
Francois' Veggie Garden - Under Oaks Wine Estate
We loved this feel good story from Under Oaks Wine Estate in Paarl and thought we would share it with our readers.

This is Francois, farm worker and head gardener of the lovely Manor House garden at Under Oaks. Theresa Britz, owner of Under Oaks, gave the farm workers some seeds and encouraged them to start their own gardens. Francois is harvesting enough fruit and vegetables on a daily basis to supply the Manor House dining room, Under Oaks Pizzeria and his fellow workers.
As per the photograph there is still enough to have a pick of the day/selection for visitors to the farm. These fresh produce items are on display and available (while stock lasts) inside the Pizzeria for guests to purchase and enjoy at home.
Read more about this award winning wine estate.  
More info
A uniquely Scottish Culinary Celebration
Burns Night
Burns Night, held in honour of Scotland's most famous poet Robert Burns, is celebrated on his birthday 25th January or a date close to it by all true Scots. For more than 200 years this well known event has been celebrated with recitals of his works, dancing, bagpipes and a hearty haggis dinner.
Read more
Burns Night Food
Burns Night is celebrated with the well known Scottish meal of haggis, served with neeps and tatties! You either love or hate haggis which is made by mincing sheep heart, liver and lungs and mixing it with onion, oatmeal, suet and spices. Take a look at traditional Scottish recipes to try out yourself.
Scottish Recipes
Atholl Brose
Atholl Brose is a uniquely Scottish tipple, steeped in history, that combines 4 ingredients – whisky, honey, oatmeal and fresh cream! It is usually enjoyed around the festive season of Hogmanay and Burns Night. Create your own Atholl Brose and you can enjoy it anywhere, from Pitlochry to Paarl! 
Make it, love it
Celebrating the Year of the Rooster
Chinese New Year is based on the ancient Chinese Lunar Calendar, falling on the second new moon after winter solstice which is Saturday 28 January this year. It is the longest national holiday in China and New Year's day is the most important date in the Chinese calendar. 
Many celebrations take place, beginning from the evening before and include colourful parades, dragon dances, reunions and elaborate dinners.The holiday ends with the Lantern Festival, where red Chinese lanterns are released into the sky.

The most common Chinese New Year foods includes dumplings, fish, spring rolls, niangao, longevity noodles and good fortune fruit.
Thanks for joining me in the Winelands Kitchen today. Food and cooking is such a social thing and it is great to share my thoughts with you. I love hearing from my readers - so do share your cooking experiences, favourite recipes, traditions and meals or let me know whatever cooking matters you would like me to research and share with everyone. 
Email me your stories and photos at  
I am Colleen 
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© 2016 ShowMe Paarl, Wellington and Franschhoek