Homemade Waffles


It’s supposed to be gorgeous hot summer weather here in Johannesburg, however, it’s been pouring with rain! Last night, amidst the thunder & lightning, I decided to try out my new waffle recipe.

It turned out super delicious! Although I only added syrup, you can add chocolate chips, ice cream, cream and any other sauces you can conjure up!


375ml cake flour (I used self raising flour and skipped the baking powder).

15ml baking powder

15ml sugar

300ml milk

2 eggs (don’t add all at once – they need to be separated).

50g melted butter (margarine)


1. Sift the DRY ingredients into a bowl.

2.  Add the sugar

3.  Whisk the milk, egg yolks and melted butter/margarine together.

4.  Add them into the dry ingredients, mix well.

5. Using an electric beater, whisk the eggs until stiff (i usually turn the bowl upside down, if nothing comes out, they’re ready 🙂

6.  Fold the beaten egg whites into the batter, allow to stand for 10-15 minutes.

7.  Spray the waffles plates with non-stick spray, gently pour the batter onto the plates, just enough to cover the base.  Let it set slightly, then close the lid.

8.  Cook until golden brown (they start smelling really delicious!)

9.  Serve with syrup, cream, ice cream, chocolate, fruit – whatever your heart desires.

This makes enough for 3 people.



Delectable Cravings


Ever have one of those days, where all you can do is think of food, and eat?

Let me help you out with drool worthy, scrumptious fare.

Photo and Recipe by Katie Morris of Katie at the Kitchen Door

Visit her website here:  http://www.katieatthekitchendoor.com/

French Beef Stew with Red Wine
Photo and recipe by Katie Morris of Katie at the Kitchen Door


Daube Provençale (French Beef Stew with Red Wine)

Recipe from Home Made Winter, by Yvette van Boven.  Serves 8.

A note on the orange/grapefruit: I found that, when using a grapefruit, leaving the entire grapefruit in the stew gave it a slightly bitter aftertaste (a reader using grapefruit as well found the same thing). Although not mentioned in Yvette’s original recipe, I’d recommend separately adding the zest of the grapefruit and the fruit of the grapefruit to the stew, avoiding the bitter pith. No one seems to have had this problem with oranges yet, but the same technique could be applied to them.

  • 3 lb stew beef, cut into 1 inch cubes
  • 1 (750-ml) bottle Cote du Rhone [I used Bordeaux and it was fine, but Yvette recommends Cote du Rhone, Vacqueyras, Gigondas, or Minervois]
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch slices
  • 1 orange, washed well and cut into 8 wedges [I substituted grapefruit]
  • 1 large onion, peeled and cut into rings
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
  • olive oil
  • 1 6-oz can tomato paste
  • 3 1/2 oz. pitted black olives
  1. Season meat with salt and pepper on all sides.  Place meat in a big bowl with wine, thyme, bay leaves, carrots, orange, onion, and garlic.  Cover and marinate in the fridge for at least 12 hours, and preferably 24 hours.
  2. Heat some olive oil over medium heat in a large stockpot.  Remove the meat from the marinade and brown the pieces in the oil on all sides.  Pour the marinade (including the oranges, bay leaves, etc.) over the meat and bring to a boil.  Boil for 5 minutes, skimming any foam from the surface.  Lower the heat to a simmer, stir in the tomato paste, and add 4 1/2 c. water.  Cover, and let stew on low heat for 2-3 hours, stirring occasionally.
  3. 15 minutes before the stew is ready, add the pitted olives.  Let cook for 15 minutes on medium heat without the lid to thicken the stew.
  4. Serve over mashed potatoes, rice, or pasta.

Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Serves 6-8.

  • 6 russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • salt
  • 8 cloves garlic, cut in quarters
  • 1/2 c. heavy cream
  1. Place cubed potatoes in a large saucepan.  Cover with cold water, salt liberally, and bring to a boil over medium heat.  Boil for 10-15 minutes until potatoes are easily pierced with a fork, skimming starch foam from top occasionally and checking to keep from boiling over – lower heat if necessary.  Drain potatoes and place in a blender.
  2. Return saucepan to heat, lower heat to low, and add garlic and heavy cream.  Heat until garlic is fragrant and cream begins to simmer, then add to blender.  Blend until potatoes are a totally smooth puree.  Add water or skim milk as necessary to even out texture.

Image and Recipe Source:  here

Caramelized Onion and Mushroom Brie Grilled Cheese

Caramelized Onion & Mushroom Brie Grilled Cheese

  • 2 Slices French Bread
  • Brie Cheese
  • 1 Yellow Onion
  • 1 Clove Garlic
  • 5 Mushrooms
  • 50-100ml Concentrated Beef Broth
  • Thyme
  • Flour
  • Butter
  • Salt & Pepper

BEWARE!  The following grilled cheese takes time and patience, so grab a book, your tablet or a computer, sit back and relax while you watch your onions turn into caramelized gold!

First things first, get a pan going on medium heat with 1-2 tablespoons of butter. While your pan is heating, evenly slice your onion (if you are impatient, thinner slices will cook faster), then place them in the pan once the butter is bubbling. Stir the onions, coating them with the butter and only stirring periodically after that, allowing them to brown, but not burn. After a few minutes, turn the heat to  medium-low and start slicing up your mushrooms and garlic.

After about twenty minutes, add in your mushrooms, garlic and more butter. Stir everything around and add a few pinches of thyme (not necessary if you don’t have any on hand) and a generous amount of salt and pepper (the brie will tone down the salt and pepper once everything is combined). Let everything cook for about five more minutes, then sprinkle a pinch or two of flour over everything and begin adding in the beef broth. I poked a hole in the can and slowly added the broth a little at a time, letting it reduce and then adding more. This allows the onions to continue caramelizing instead of steaming from too much liquid. As you pour in the broth, you will get a nice gravy forming around the onions; taste it as you’re going, and stop once you’re satisfied with the “beefiness” of your onions and mushrooms!

Cut two slices of bread and spread butter on both sides of each slice. Place brie cheese on one slice, then top with your onions, mushrooms and more brie! Put the sandwich together, and grill it in the same pan you used for the onions and mushrooms (you’ll get some nice flavour on your bread this way!). Cook for about 3-4 minutes on each side, or until browned, then slice in half and enjoy this gloriously gooey mess!

The time spent caramelizing the onions is definitely worth it, and adding the beef stock gives this sandwich a flavour similar to a roast beef dip almost tricking you into thinking there actually is meat in it! Overall, you can’t really go wrong with a sandwich loaded with caramelized onions and mushrooms, and tons of creamy brie. Just thinking about it makes me want another!!

Image Source & Recipe:  here

Veggie Gyros

Veggie Gyros
serves 2

2 pieces of white or wheat round flat-bread
olive oil

6 falafel balls (you could also use seitan, tempeh or veggie burgers)

1 small onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup seasoned rice vinegar

1 small tomato, sliced
1/2 avocado, sliced – tossed in lemon juice
2 dill pickles

tahini sauce

secret sauce:
2 tsp harissa OR non-spicy option: 1/2 cup chopped fresh dill
1 Tbsp maple syrup
2 Tbsp vegan mayo

To Make:

1. Thinly slice the onions and toss in rice vinegar. I like to let mine chill over night in the fridge to pickle a bit – but this step is optional.
2. Brush your flat-bread with olive oil and grill on until charred – I used a panini press.
3. Mix up your secret sauce
4. Prep your veggies: tomato, avocado, pickles.
5. Grill to warm your falafel balls – I pressed mine on the panini press with the flat-bread.
6. Assemble! Lay out a square sheet of tinfoil. Add the avocado, onions, falafel, pickles, tomato – drizzle some secret sauce over the filling as well as some tahini (or serve tahini on side) and close the flat-bread – wrap tightly in foil to secure. Serve!

Image & Recipe Source:  here




Cheesy Potato Soup

A hint of Tabasco sauce adds a spicy kick to the cheese and potatoes.

Makes: 9 cups; Total time: 40 minutes

1 lb. thick-sliced bacon, diced
1 white onion, diced (2 cups)
1 cup minced celery
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
6 cups peeled and diced russet potatoes (2 lb.)
1 Tbsp. dry mustard
2 tsp. paprika
3 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. Tabasco sauce
4 cups shredded sharp Cheddar
2 cups half-and-half
Salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper to taste
Minced scallions

Cook bacon in a large pot over medium-high heat until crisp. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon to a paper-towel-lined plate; set aside. Pour off all but 2 Tbsp. drippings.

Add onion, celery, and garlic to drippings in pot and sweat over medium heat until onion is softened, about 5 minutes.

Stir in flour and cook 1–2 minutes. Add potatoes, dry mustard, and paprika; cook, stirring to coat potatoes, 1 minute. Stir in broth, Worcestershire, and Tabasco. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook, partially covered, until potatoes are soft, 10–15 minutes. Coarsely mash potatoes, then stir in Cheddar and half-and-half until Cheddar is melted, 2 minutes. Remove soup from heat; season with salt, black pepper, and cayenne.

Garnish servings with bacon and scallions.

Nutrition Information
Per cup: 620 cal; 45g total fat (22g sat); 99mg chol; 825mg sodium; 32g carb; 3g fiber; 22g protein

Image & Recipe Source: here

Shrimp and Guacamole Tostadas – Simply Scrumptious!


What it took for 6 tostadas:

by Bev Cooks

* 6 corn tortillas
* cooking spray
* 2 cups grated cheddar cheese
* 2 avocados
* 1/2 cup chopped cilantro, plus more for garnish
* juice from 1 lime
* 2 Tbs. extra virgin olive oil
* 1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
* 1 Tbs ground cumin
* 2 Tbs chili powder
* 1 tsp crushed red or green pepper
* 1 tsp garlic salt
* 1 red bell pepper, cut into small slices

Preheat oven to 350.

Lightly coat both sides of the corn tortillas with cooking spray. Bake for 4 minutes on each side. Switch oven to broil. Evenly divide the cheese over the tortillas and broil until cheese is melted and bubbly, 2-ish minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

In a small bowl, combine the avocados, cilantro, lime juice and a pinch of kosher salt. Mash up with a fork until you get guacamole. Go ahead and eat a few bites for your well being.

Toss the shrimp with the cumin, chili powder, crushed pepper flakes and garlic salt.

Heat the oil in a medium skillet over medium high. Sear the shrimp on one side for 2 minutes; flip and sear 30 more seconds. Remove from pan.

To the pan, add the sliced red bell pepper. Saute for 2 minutes, scraping the browned bits from the pan, seasoning the peppers. Sprinkle in a leetle salt.

Spoon the guacamole over each cheesy tostada, followed by shrimp and red bell pepper. Garnish each tostado with cilantro and give another good squeeze of lime juice over each one. Enjoy!

Images and Recipe Source:  here   (Click on the link to also check out some fantastic recipes! Bev Cooks is great!)

Chocolate and Caramel Cake – ooooh!



Chocolate and Caramel Cake
Printable Recipe

1 c (198 g) sugar
1/4 c (59 ml) heavy cream

Prepare a small bowl by rubbing it with shortening/butter or spraying it with Pam so that the cooling caramel will not stick to it completely. Set aside.

Cook the sugar in a heavy-bottom pan until a dark amber color (I don’t know which temp is right… I got lucky, I guess!). Remove from heat and pour in the cream, stirring gently until combined and no longer bubbling. Pour into the prepared bowl and let rest until cool to the touch.

Be careful, hot sugar is hot! The goal is to have a very soft caramel that is a little runny when cooled. You’ll be adding it to buttercream.

Caramel/Chocolate Swiss Meringue Buttercream
Please click here for a step-by-step guide to making Swiss Meringue Buttercream and troubleshooting tips!

1 3/4 c (348 g) sugar
8 egg whites (save 2 yolks for the cake recipe!)
3 1/2 sticks (28 Tbls) unsalted butter, cubed and at room temperature
2 tsp vanilla extract
Resulting caramel from above recipe
1/4 c (40 g) dark chocolate, melted and cooled

Cook the egg whites and sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat, whisking constantly, until the sugar is completely dissolved (test by rubbing some between your fingers. If it’s completely smooth, it’s done). Pour into another bowl (a stand mixer is preferable) and whip on high speed until room temp. Then, on a medium-slow speed, slowly add the butter, a few pieces at a time, waiting until each addition is fully incorporated before adding more. After it has all been added, whip it until it thickens up, about five minutes, and add the vanilla. Remove half of the buttercream, place in a separate bowl, and whip in the chocolate. Add the caramel to the remaining half. It may be necessary to heat the caramel slightly to make sure it is the correct consistency, but be careful it’s not so hot that it will melt the buttercream!

Super Chocolate Cake
3/4 c (177ml) heavy cream
1 c (160 g) dark chocolate chips (I used 52%)
2 c (250 g) flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
3/4 c (177 g)butter, cubed and at room temp
1 c (142 g)firmly packed brown sugar
2 eggs + 2 yolks, at room temperature
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat the oven to 350F (175C) then grease and line two 6 inch pans.

Heat cream until steaming, then pour over chocolate. Allow to set for 5 minutes, then whisk gently to combine. Allow to cool to room temp (put it in the fridge/freezer for a bit, if you like).

In a small bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside

Cream the butter and sugar. Add the eggs, one at a time, and then add both yolks plus the vanilla. Then, alternating between wet and dry (beginning with wet), add the flour and cream mixtures in 2 additions each. Be sure to scrape down the bowl!

Divide batter into the two prepared pans and bake 35-40 min.

Level and split each layer of cake so you have four layers of equal height. Fill with caramel buttercream, crumb coat with either frosting, and then frost completely with the chocolate buttercream. I decorated very simply by drizzling chocolate over the edges of the [chilled] cake. Additional caramel would also be great!

Recipe and Image source:  here

Chicken Fried Rice


This is one of my favourites! I found the recipe on Pinterest, and have made it twice already.

You HAVE to try this! yummm!

Chicken Fried Rice


Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Yield: SERVES 4

4-5 cups cooked rice
1 boneless chicken breast or 2 thighs, chopped into small bits
1 Tbsp. soy sauce
4 spring onions, sliced, white parts separate from green
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 thumb-size piece galangal OR ginger, sliced into thin matchsticks
1 red or green chili, thinly sliced (or less for milder rice)
5-7 fresh shiitake mushrooms, chopped into small pieces (I used normal button mushrooms)
1 egg
1/2 cup frozen peas
2-3 vegetable oil
optional: 1 stalk celery, sliced (adds a little crunch to the dish)

3 Tbsp. chicken stock
3 Tbsp. fish sauce
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 Tbsp. lime juice
1/4 tsp. ground white pepper
1/4 tsp. sugar


  1. To prepare leftover cold rice: Pour a teaspoon or so of oil onto your fingers and work through the rice, separating clumps back into grains. To prepare chicken: Chop into small pieces and place in a bowl. Pour over 1 Tbsp. soy sauce and stir. Set aside.
  2. Combine all ‘stir-fry sauce’ ingredients together in a cup, stirring to dissolve the sugar and pepper. Set aside.
  3. Warm a wok or large frying pan over high or medium-high heat. Drizzle in 2 Tbsp. oil and swirl around, then add the white parts of the onion, garlic, galangal/ginger, and chili. Stir-fry 1 minute, then add the chicken. Stir-fry 2-3 minutes, or until chicken turns evenly opaque on the outside.
  4. Add the mushrooms and celery (if using), and stir-fry 2-3 more minutes, until mushrooms and chicken are cooked through. If your wok/pan becomes too dry, add 1-2 Tbsp. chicken stock or white wine.
  5. Keeping heat high, add the rice. Stir-fry everything together using a spatula or other flat utensil to gently lift and turn the rice. After frying for 1 minute, gradually begin adding the sauce you made, 1-2 Tbsp. at a time. Continue stir-frying in this way 6-10 minutes, or until all the sauce has been added. Tip: The idea is to keep the pan as dry as possible throughout the frying process. It’s the dryness of the fried rice that makes it light and fluffy (as opposed to heavy and clumpy), and frying it over high heat with a conservative amount of moisture (sauce) achieves this.
  6. Add the frozen peas and stir-fry briefly to incorporate. Then push everything aside to reveal the center of the pan. Crack in the egg and quickly stir-fry to scramble. Note that the egg will dry out the pan, which is what you want at this stage. Continue stir-frying everything together for 2 more minutes, until rice is light and falls easily into separate grains.
  7. Switch off heat and taste-test, adding more fish sauce until desired flavor and saltiness is achieved (I usually end up adding an extra Tbsp. fish sauce when frying 5 cups rice). If rice happens to be too salty, add a squeeze of lime juice. Top with reserved green onion and serve hot from the pan. For those who like it extra spicy, serve Thai Chili Sauce on the side, and ENJOY!


Image source:  here

Recipe source: here

Bowls of oozing deliciousness


French Onion Soup – Délicieux


Soothing indulgence


Henri’s French Onion Soup

Serves 6.


3 pounds yellow onions, cut into 1/8-inch pieces
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon table salt, plus more as needed
1 pinch sugar
8 cups water , plus more as needed
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 sprig fresh thyme
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 baguette , crusty
8 ounces Gruyère cheese-I sliced it thick and placed it over the top of the crock…..the cheese melted mostly into the soup and a little off to the sides, but it created a thick, even layer this way.


  1. Melt butter in a large Dutch oven or soup pot over medium heat.
  2. Add the onions, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and sugar. Toss to evenly coat.
  3. Cover and cook for 10 minutes.
  4. Take the cover off, and cook, stirring frequently, until the onions are lightly browned.  I cooked mine for a little less than 90 minutes.
  5. At this point, stir every 5 minutes and add water (a tablespoon at a time to loosen up the dark brown stuff that forms on the bottom of the pan).
  6. Continue to cook until the onions are an even dark brown color, an additional 30 minutes longer or so.
  7. Add the flour and stir for two minutes.
  8. Add 8 cups water and thyme to the onions and bring to a boil.
  9. Lower heat  and simmer for 20 minutes.
  10. Add white wine and simmer 10 minutes longer.
  11. Add salt to taste.
  12. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 325 degrees and adjust a rack to the upper middle position.
  13. Cut the baguette into 3/4 inch slices and arrange on a single layer on a cookie sheet.
  14. Bake until the bread is dry, about 10 minutes. Remove bread slices and set aside.
  15. Heat broiler and place 6 heatproof bowls in a baking sheet. Fill each bowl with about 2 cups soup. Top each with two baguette slices and evenly distribute cheese slices over the bread. Broil until well browned and bubbly, about ten minutes. Cool for five minutes before serving.

Photo & Recipe Source:  here