The festive season has arrived and with it comes a variety of celebrations ranging from year-end functions to New Year’s Eve.
For those of us in the culinary industry, every occasion is regarded a celebration and our joy derived from serving others keeps us motivated - even when everyone else is on holiday. For me, cooking and serving a sumptuous meal for guests on Christmas Day is one of the highlights of working in a professional kitchen. In my experience, guests at this time of the year are relaxed, cheerful and generous with their gratitude for the effort we put in to ensure their meal is memorable. So, I ask you to please be mindful of the team at work preparing your memories; now and in the future too.
Bookings for my bespoke cooking classes have been overwhelming. I treat each course as a special function and, therefore, ask various pre, in-depth questions to ensure the group gets exactly the lesson it is expecting. I then pack in as many cooking skills, hints and tips along the way. Anyone with information overload can send me their queries via email and I shall respond as soon as possible.
A class that springs to mind is our Thai-flavours course. It was inspired by a trip to Thailand, a few years back, but fond memories linger and today I’m going to share an exciting recipe with you. It comprises a hot, seared sliced banana with deliciously-decedent chocolate sauce all wrapped inside a pancake – and heated. While writing these words I recall walking down the streets of Bangkok.
Pancakes with grilled Banana, Frangelico Chocolate Sauce and roasted Hazelnuts
Our Weber braai classes, on the first Friday of every month, have become very popular. I even have a young chap and 10 of his friends booked for a class early next month. This was organised after his mother joined our last session. I’m a firm believer in ‘anything is possible’ – and this proves I’m right. I have decided to include a recipe for delicious pork filled and stuffed turkey with coal-roasted sweet potatoes. This is an appealing alternative to the traditional turkey and gammon that we (as a family) have always enjoyed on Christmas Day. Get out those knives and start tunnel boning. Oh yes… I’m considering offering a tunnel boning, knife sharping and carving class for next year.
WEBER Stuffed Christmas Turkey with Coal roasted Sweet Potatoes and Weber – grilled Fresh Asparagus
Another of our cooking-class groups was looking for inspiration for innovative and exciting festive-season ideas. We decided the traditional trifle needed reinventing by giving it a South African twist. All its separate combinations can be made in advance so it’s an easy item to include this on your menu this year.
South African Trifle
Explore my website to find out more about my WOMEN'S chef range - men's to come shortly; remember Jackie Cameron Cooks At Home and all my foodie adventures. I always look forward to hearing from you on firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Food styling and recipe development: Elaine Boshoff.