Tag Archives: cinnamon

citrus #doughnuts with #cinnamon sugar

citrus #doughnuts with #cinnamon sugar

I just LOVE warm, fluffy and crisp doughnuts. Smothered in chocolate or caramel sauce or simply sprinkled with some cinnamon sugar. I never thought I would make doughnuts because they are a bit of a project, but they are much less work than you might think. We made these tasty citrus delights this morning on Expresso and used Sara Wineberg’s recipe. Once you have mastered this basic recipe you can do pretty much anything you like in terms of glazes, toppings and fillings.citrus doughnuts

Citrus doughnuts with cinnamon sugar
(Recipe by Sara Wineberg)

2 sachets (20g) dry yeast
2 tsp sugar
1/4 cup warm water
1 egg
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup orange juice
Pinch salt
3 Tbs margarine
1Tbs oil
4 1/4 cups flour
1/3 cup sugar
Oil for frying
To serve
Castor sugar

In a large bowl, dissolve yeast and 2 tsp sugar in ¼ cup warm water. Allow to stand for several minutes until bubbly. Add egg, remaining water, orange juice, salt, margarine, oil, flour and remaining sugar and knead until smooth. Cover dough and allow to double in size (about 1 hour). Roll out dough on a floured surface. Shape into balls. Leave on a greased wax paper to rise again for about 1/2 hour. Heat oil to 350 degrees deep fry with lid on and turn when golden brown. Remove with slotted spoon, drain and cool on paper towels. Make some cinnamon sugar and sprinkle over doughnuts

cinnamon #pancakes filled with childhood memories

cinnamon #pancakes filled with childhood memories

{my childhood food festival}
Every year in the small town of Wepener in the Free State where I grew up there was always a big farm show. For all the “tannies en omies” in the district and surrounding towns, it was always a large and important affair.

The fair was a place to show off your best livestock or your best cookies, melktert or baked goods with everyone competing for that treasured blue rosette. For me, the show was something to look forward to – it was my food festival … like the Taste of Cape Town and the Good Food and Wine show today.


{cinnamon pancake}
In the food hall, all the tannies were there standing next to their gas stoves in their frilly and colourful aprons, cooking everything from babotie, curry offal to jaffles and pancakes. Well, what is a food festival without the traditional pancake and cinnamon sugar?

Yes, the cinnamon sugar was sprinkled by the tablespoon full onto the “just-out-of-the-pan” fluffy slightly-burnt-pancakes. These featherlite, rolled up pancakes were just treat.

I remember those happy childhood memories, returning from the show late in the evening, climbing into bed with a full stomach and a happy and contented smile. I was filled to the brim with those delicious pancakes, but … the pancakes and the food fair also filled and fed my soul. The same way food feeds my soul today.

{vintage large quantity pancake recipe}
Today I want to share tannie Dollie van Heerden’s age old large quantity recipe Wepener pancakes. I found her recipe in an original copy of “Beproefde Resepte” (Proven Recipes), a local selection of recipes typed up by my mom for the school, so many years ago.

Tannie Dollie van Heerden’s tried and tested pancake recipe
I am not going to bother with converting the old measures of weight with the current metric system…as they say…you can “just google it!”.

30 cups of water
30 eggs
5 lb flour
1 bottle of cooking oil
3 tablespoons of salt
1 ounce of baking powder

Whisk the eggs together well. Add water, little by little to the eggs whisking all the while.
Sift the flour into the egg mixture. Add the salt and keep mixing until all the flour, water and eggs have mixed together. Lastly, whisk the cooking oil and baking powder together and pour into hot frying pan. Please note that the oil is only added for the first pancake. Fry until golden brown.

pear crumble – a true treat

pear crumble – a true treat

If you want to watch me make this – click here.


The other day a delivery of the most beautiful Abate Fetel pears from Tru-Cape arrived at my desk and it inspired me to make this delicious and easy pear crumble. That day I handed these delicious pears to some of my colleagues … well they all shouted for more and said they were just so utterly natural, fresh and delicious. Pears are such heavenly treats and so fabulous to bake with – so I baked some and also did a little research on the humble Abate Fetel pear* …


Abate Fete: ah-BAH-tay fuh-TEL

These pears were fist cultivated by Italian monks a few hundred years ago.

Shape + Look
Unlike normal pear-shaped pears, this variety of pear is slim and long and often many people have described it as almost banana-shaped. This fruit has an attractive yellowish brown russet over its green exterior.

When to eat
This variety of pear is eaten when it is just barely soft; you don’t have to wait for the fleeting, elusive moment between green woodiness and pulpy mush.

A rich sweet taste with a very unusual note: could it be aromatic honey?

Source: thekitchn.com + specialtyfruitclubs.com

* Abate Fete pears are now available in Checkers Stores nationwide.


pear crumble - a true treat
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 4
  • For the filling
  • 400g Pears (cored and sliced thinly) - +- 3 Pears
  • 50g Brown sugar
  • 20g Butter cut in blocks
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 Star anise
  • 1 Cinnamon stick
  • Pinch of salt
  • For the crumble
  • 40g Oats
  • 40g Flour
  • 25g Castor sugar
  • 40g Butter – cut into small blocks
  • ¼ t Cinnamon powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • To serve
  • Vanilla ice cream
  1. Preheat the oven to 190°C.
  2. Filling – Place all the ingredients into a pan, cook over medium heat for 5 minutes and then transfer cooked ingredients into a small ovenproof dish.
  3. Crumble - Place all the dry ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Cut the butter into small cubes and add this to the dry ingredient mixture. Mix with your fingertips until it resembles an even crumbed texture.
  4. Cover the pears with the crumble mixture. Bake for approximately 40 minutes until the crumble turns golden and serve hot with some creamy vanilla ice cream.



red wine poached beetroot salad

red wine poached beetroot salad


lesson#2 {alain passard} enhance the flavour of your vegetables with subtle flavourings

I am still talking veggies and the most wonderful experience I had at Alain Passard’s restaurant in Paris – L’Arperge. As I mentioned in a previous cabbage post – what I took away from the day was to make your vegetables the stars of a meal – look at them, smell them, see their beauty, see their perfection and cook them in such a way as to bring out their natural flavours.

I took my little black book with and my camera to make sure I had a permanent memory of the food. But the flavours – how am I going to remember them? How was I ever going to relate them? I decided that the only way was to take what I have tasted and implement these complex flavours in my kitchen – it will definitely not be the same but at least it will be documented.


One of the dished served to us at Passard’s little restaurant was beetroot – OMG, the flavours! When you tasted the beetroot it was the same flavours you would find in glühwein – you know, the red wine, the cinnamon etc. It was so complimenting of the beetroot that I decided to poach my red veged beauties in a bit of red wine, black pepper corns, cinnamon, star anise and some orange peel.

Well, it turned out fantastic and so absolutely delicious. The spices compliment the earthiness of the beetroot transforming this root into something so special. After you had a bite the tastes kind of linger in your mouth for a while and you don’t know if you are in winter or in summer. I served the baby beats cold and added some cream cheese buttons, some micro leaves and a drop of balsamic glaze on each beetroot.

Please try this the next time – it really is special and something rather completely different.


red wine poached beetroot salad
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 4
  • For poaching beetroot
  • 650g Baby Beetroots
  • 1L Red wine
  • 250ml Water
  • 3 Cloves
  • 5 Black peppercorns
  • 1 Big cinnamon stick
  • Peel of one orange
  • 2T Sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • Other salad ingredients
  • Micro greens
  • 80g Cream Cheese
  • Balsamic glaze
  1. Cook the beetroot in the wine spice mix for +- 40 minutes till soft.
  2. Drain and let it cool. Peel and leave in wine for a while – just to soak up some flavours.
  3. Cut in half, add some cream cheese drops and micro greens.
  4. Add one drop of balsamic glaze on each beetroot.


spiced ricotta pancakes + figs + naartjie honey

spiced ricotta pancakes + figs + naartjie honey

“Peel a fig for a friend and a peach for your enemy” – English proverb

ricotta pancakes with figs

I love figs. Such an ancient fruit, yet still with us today … I also agree with the believe that figs are a symbol of abundance, fertility and sweetness. So when my eyes caught a few fresh figs on the shelf in the supermarket the other day, I had to have them and do something with them. They were dark purple, plump and looked so ripe and juicy. I had ricotta at home and I decided to make ricotta pancakes with figs. Using Nigella’s Ricotta Hotcakes as a basis I changed her recipe by adding a few spices like nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves as well as naartjie zest – which just gave it that ‘pick-me-up’ spicy-citrus flavouring.


I am also curious to dig a little deeper, and scratch below the surface when it comes to things that interest me, so I read up about figs and came across these interesting facts.

Fig Trivia – 10 Fig Facts

1. The Blossoms
Fig trees have no blossoms on their branches – the ‘fruit’ that we eat is the blossom and is pollinated by a special type of wasp. Many tiny flowers produce the crunchy little edible seeds that give figs their unique texture.

2. Calcium and Fiber
Figs are one of the highest plant sources of calcium and fiber. Eating a half cup of figs has as much calcium as drinking a half a glass of milk. The food value increases with drying – one dried fig has almost as much calcium as an egg – listen up moms!

3. The Calorie Value
There is approximately 50 calories in one large fig.

4. The Garden of Eden
Many believe it was figs that were actually the fruit in the Garden of Eden with Adam and Eve, not apples.

5. Fig Puree
Fig puree can be used to replace fat in baked goods.

6. The scientific name – Ficus carica
The common fig is a deciduous tree that grows to heights of up to 6 meters in the genus Ficus, from the family Moraceae, known as common fig tree. It is a temperate species native to the Middle East.

7. The Family
Figs may not look like it, but did you know that figs are a member of the mulberry family?

8. The Language
English – Fig
Spanish – Higo
Afrikaans – Vy
French – Figue
German – Feige
Italian – Fico

9. The History
Figs are originally from small Asia and are one of the first fruits cultivated ever. The Greeks made mention of them and around 60 BC and Plato promoted the fig as being an important nutrition for athletes. A story is known of the Greek government that had forbidden all exports of figs once in order to assure themselves of a good outcome at The Olympic Games. The ancients Greeks knew about 29 fig sorts. Today there are more than 600 different fig types.

10. Idiom
English Idiom: “I don’t care a fig”
Meaning: Complete lack of concern about an event.
Origination: Probably originates from the abundance of this fruit.

Source: valleyfig.com, foodandtravel.com.au, caloriecount.about.com, wikipedia.org, crfg.org,


spiced ricotta pancakes + figs + naartjie honey
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 5
  • For crumpets
  • 250g Ricotta cheese
  • ½ Cup milk
  • 2 Eggs
  • 100g Plain flour
  • 1t Baking powder
  • 2t Naartjie Zest (you can replace with orange)
  • Pinch of salt
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • Pinch of cinnamon
  • Pinch of cloves
  • Butter for frying
  • Naartjie honey
  • 1 Cup honey (I used orange blossom honey)
  • Juice of one orange or naartjie (you can replace with orange)
  • 1t Naartie peel
  • 1 Clove
  • To serve
  • 5 Fresh figs - quartered
  • 5t Crème Fraiche
  1. For pancakes – Mix the ricotta, milk and eggs together and then add all the dry ingredients - mix everything together. Don’t overwork the mixture. Heat a bit butter in a non stick pan – then “spoon ” a dollops of batter into the pan and cook each pancake for about a minute each side till golden brown.
  2. For honey - simmer all ingredients for 5 minutes and allow to cool down a bit.
  3. To serve - Drizzle with syrup + add the figs + the Crème Fraiche.


milk tart + tea cups + merry-go-rounds

milk tart + tea cups + merry-go-rounds

Milk tart – they say that time changes everything, and everything changes with time…but does it? I think time is like a merry-go-round … it is only your view of things that changes, not the merry-go-round … … the “melk tert” never changed.

I grew up with “melk tert” with almond essence, puff pastry and cinnamon sugar sprinkled on top. It brings back many fond and happy memories. A kaleidoscope of “Kerk bazaars” (chruch fete’s) and of course the “koek en tee na kerk op Sondae” at our home (cake and tea after church on Sunday).

Watch me make this by clicking here.

milk tart + tea cups + merry-go-round

The most lingering memory of the milk tart for me was custard inside the tart shell. This recipe is one of those versatile recipes that gives you the freedom to decide how you want to use it…either in a traditional puff pastry shell, or one where you create your own biscuit base or what I did … I thought I would update this age old classic without trying to change its history or heritage so I served it in my Mom’s tea cup and I added a few a Ameretti biscuits allowing the memories of the past to dwell in the sweetness of the present. I have

My mom and I made it just the way that we remembered….I went to visit her the other day and we milled about in the kitchen, talking and laughing about those times when we were much younger … the many different stories of how to make milk tart and how to bring the best tart to the bazaar, we talked about family, we giggled like young girls as the milk boiled over and the maizina mix splattered all over the kitchen counter, we counted how many “melk terte” we had made together over the years and then we counted the blessing we have been able to share – then and now. For just a few hours I was again on that merry-go-round … me, my mom, the milk tart and a heap of happy memories….

Dankie Ma. Lief vir jou.


milk tart + tea cups
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 6
  • 4 Cups of full cream milk
  • 150 g Sugar
  • ½ t Salt
  • 4 Large eggs separated
  • 90g Maizina powder mixed with some of the milk (mix through until it has that thick cream consistency)
  • ¾ t Almond essence
  • 3T Butter (not margarine)
  • Cinnamon Sugar Mixture
  • 50ml Sugar
  • 5ml Ground cinnamon
  • Amaretti biscuits
  1. Mix the milk, sugar and salt in pot and bring to boil.
  2. In the meanwhile beat the egg yolks slowly adding the Maizina.
  3. Pour this mixture very slowly in the milk mix - I use a hand egg-beater to mix it in - to avoid lumps
  4. Cook for 5 minutes till cooked.
  5. Add the almond essence and the butter. Stir well.
  6. Beat the egg whites until soft peaks start to form then slowly fold this in the custard.
  7. Please always taste again for seasoning.
  8. Pour in cups, sprinkle with cinnamon sugar and serve with amaretti biscuits.