Easy fête delights

By admin
04 October 2013

Our food bloggers Mari-Louis Guy and her brother, Callie Maritz are preparing for a fête and making caramel popcorn and lamingtons and reviewing a new recipe book.

After a 20-something year reprieve from school fêtes, my brother Callie and I both have kids at school now and are happily taking part in funding events and helping out. If you have kids at school and need to do this too, do yourself a favour and follow our mother’s sage methods. A wise woman who didn’t want to spend hours in the kitchen, she created and baked things that were fun for kids to eat, but were also so easy to make, that by year two, we could make it ourselves. Getting us into the kitchen early turned out to be a great gift for us. As the kids get older we intend to add discussions about costing, profit/loss and sales techniques. Pretty soon, we hope, they will run their own stalls at fête and we will be known as super-parents.

Easy treats for fêtes

Our grandparents once mail-ordered a Christmas hamper of sweets to us. It contained, among many other goodies, caramel popcorn. We gobbled it up so fast that we had to figure out how to make our own.

This recipe is from our book Make Give Sell. It’s perfect for school fêtes and church bazaars and everywhere where people who were once kids are involved.

CARAMEL POPCORN

Makes 8-10 large cups or 16-20 small cups

INGREDIENTS

150 g popcorn (unpopped) or 8 cups popped popcorn

120 g (1 cup) peanuts or cashew nuts

5 ml (1 tsp) sea salt

250 g butter

200 g (1 cup) brown sugar

200 g (1 cup) white sugar

125 ml (½ cup) golden syrup

INSTRUCTIONS

1 Preheat the oven to 180 °C.

2 Spread the popcorn and nuts over a large baking tray and sprinkle with salt.

3 In a saucepan over low heat, stir the butter, brown and white sugar and golden syrup together until the sugar has dissolved.

4 Increase the heat slightly and continue stirring until the mixture starts to boil. Stop stirring and gently boil for 4 minutes.

5 Drizzle the hot caramel over the popcorn and nuts. Use two wooden spoons to toss the mixture and make sure the popcorn and nuts are evenly coated.

6 Pop into the oven for 20 minutes, tossing the popcorn every 5 minutes. Transfer to a cold, clean silicone baking mat or lined baking tray to stop the cooking process. Leave to cool.

The following recipe is also great for fêtes and bazaars. It’s in our recipe book Cakes to Celebrate Love and Life (Struik) and we are giving away five copies, see below.

Click here to buy the book   (R225,50)

Or click here buy an ebook  (R83,77)

LAMINGTONS

In our family we fight over these lamingtons much like the Scots, Kiwis and Aussies fight over the right to claim them as their own invention. Lord Lamington, whom the Australians claim the treats were named after, could not stomach them, calling them “those bloody poofy woolly biscuits”.

The easiest way is to use any sponge or sheet cake, cut into squares and dip into one of the chocolate mixtures below and roll in desiccated coconut.

INGREDIENTS

White chocolate mixture

270 g (2 cups) white chocolate pieces

250 ml (1 cup) cream

15 ml (1 tbsp) milk

200 g (2 cups) desiccated coconut

Dark chocolate mixture

30 g (¼ cup) cocoa powder

25 g butter

65 ml (¼ cup) milk

280 g (2 cups) icing sugar, sifted

200 g (2 cups) desiccated coconut

Strawberry chocolate

270 g (2 cups) white chocolate pieces

250 ml (1 cup) cream

15 ml (1 tbsp) milk

dash of strawberry essence

drop of red food colouring

200 g (2 cups) desiccated coconut

INSTRUCTIONS

White chocolate mixture

1 In a double boiler, melt the chocolate and cream over low heat; stir until combined. Remove from the heat and beat until light and thick.

2 Add the milk. Dip the cake squares in the chocolate mixture, and then roll in the coconut.

Dark chocolate mixture

1 In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the cocoa powder, butter and milk. Stir until the butter has melted.

2 Take off the heat and stir in the icing sugar. Dip the cake squares in the chocolate mixture, and then roll in the coconut.

Strawberry chocolate

1 In a double boiler, melt the white chocolate and cream over low heat; stir until combined.

2 Remove from the heat and add the milk, essence and colouring. Dip the cake squares in the chocolate mixture, and then roll in the coconut. Serving suggestion: We like to stack all three colours together to resemble that favourite from our youth, Neapolitan ice cream.   Win!

5 readers of this blog will each win a copy of our book Cakes to Celebrate Love and Life. To enter, SMS your answer to the question below, followed by your name and address to 34923 before 5 pm on 18 October. Question: Who do the Australians say invented lamingtons?

New recipe books on shelves now! 

Food Jamming with Jade by Jade de Waal (R177)

What a wonderful fun, energetic book from Jade de Waal, a Masterchef South Africa season one contestant. Just reading through it made me feel alive and ready for late nights. The mix of recipes are wonderfully eclectic. The day we set aside for this book was one of those regular crazy busy days in our household, so we chose a few quick and easy recipes. I fixed the Pimp my Beans toast as a rugby treat for the boys and Callie made the African inspired cucumber salad. He added more chilli and a dollop of Cashew nut paste. Both recipes were well loved and disappeared quickly.

The book is also a fun read especially as it is also dotted with images of people attending the Jade`s fun food jamming sessions. We recognized a host of attendees and felt quite jealous that we were not there too. A Food Jamming session is definitely on the to do list.

Click here to buy the book.

PIMP-MY-BEANS TOAST

Serves 4 as a snack

INGREDIENTS

30 ml (2 tbsp) extra virgin olive oil

1 chorizo sausage, diced (optional)

1 onion, coarsely chopped

1 red chilli, seeded and chopped

1 x 400 g tin baked beans in tomato sauce

good-quality bread, such as ciabatta or baguette, for serving

grated cheese, such as Cheddar (optional), for serving

handful fresh basil (optional), for garnish

INSTRUCTIONS

1 Heat the olive oil in a small saucepan. Add the chorizo and fry for about 2 minutes to brown.

2 Add the onion and chilli, and fry for 2 more minutes, stirring regularly so the onion browns slightly.

3 Add the beans, stir and heat through for about 1 minute.

4 Slice and toast the bread. Drizzle a little olive oil over the slices.

5 Spoon the beans over the bread, followed by the grated cheese and

basil.

6 Serve hot and eat with your hands.

Cucumber and peanut salad

Serves 4

INGREDIENTS

12 baby cucumbers, sliced

1 jalapeño pepper, finely chopped

125 ml (½ cup) small roasted salted peanuts

125 ml (½ cup) shredded coconut

juice of 1 lime

5 ml (1 tsp) sugar

30 ml (2 Tbsp) sesame oil

5 ml (1 tsp) mustard seeds

5 ml (1 tsp) ground cumin

5 ml (1 tsp) salt

2,5 ml (½ tsp) cayenne pepper

INSTRUCTIONS

1 Combine the cucumber, jalapeño, peanuts, 30 ml (2 Tbsp) coconut, lime juice and sugar in a large bowl. Set aside. 2 Heat the sesame oil in a small pan. Add the mustard seeds. When they start to sizzle and pop, stir in the cumin, salt, cayenne pepper and remaining coconut. Turn off the heat. 3 Pour the mustard seed mixture over the cucumber mixture and toss everything together. Taste to make sure it’s salty-sweet enough for you. Win! 5 readers of this blog will each win a copy of Jamming with Jade. To enter, SMS your answer to the question below, followed by your name and address to 34923 before 5 pm on 18 October. Question: What is Jade’s surname?  

Visit us if you are in the Cape

Callie and I will be manning a stall at the annual very cool inner-city church bazaar of Three Anchor Bay on 12October.

We will be serving retro American dishes such as pulled pork sandwiches and super slow cooked barbecue beans. On the sweet side we will be serving chocolate Elvis pies, coconut cream pies, deep dish apple pies and maybe a cobbler or two. We will report back later on the bestsellers.

Also in our upcoming not-quite-work, yet not-quite-play column is an inter-active breakfast we will host at the 2nd Spier Secret Festival on 25 and 26 October in Stellenbosch. Last year’s event was fantastic and the line-up for this one looks even more spectacular.

What will we be serving? SSshhhhhhh it is a secret!

For more information click here.

-Mari-Louis

Mari-Louis Guy, a freelance food stylist and cookbook author, and her brother, Callie Maritz, are food gurus who work under the name Cakebread. They are both parents with hectic lives. Mari-Louis blogs for YOU about their favourite recipes, cookbooks and gives advice on how to prepare meals to make life easier.

Share your experiences and recipes with her atcakebreadct@gmail.comor find her on facebook at Cakebread = Mari-Louis Guy and Callie Maritz.

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