Hastings on Food

2015-07-23 06:02

SALUTATIONS. Be truthful - sometimes you just want to scream, especially when we have days that do not go according to plan and Odin the mythological God of conflict seems to be working overtime.

Screaming at someone is like running on a treadmill, it is not going to get you anywhere. However, yelling outside at the top of your voice will not cause any avalanches, and if people are close to your decibels it should be no more frightening than a passing train.

Yes, correctly yelling can actually help your health. It is in fact an ancient art form of Chinese medicine that has been passed on from generation to generation and is revered as part of their folk culture.

When you yell it can have a positive mental influence by releasing some endorphins and placing you on a natural high. It might even be as calm and addictive as a runner’s high, in effect, getting the same feeling in a different way. So if by some unforeseen circumstance you missed your morning run have a good screaming session instead, although be careful not to do it waiting in line at the ATM or somewhere you might be placed in a strait jacket and thrown into a padded cell.

It would be nice to start a shout club whereby each morning all meet and climb to raised ground and shout to our hearts content - it would be exuberating and just plain fun.

I have two beautiful mischievous Alsatians who really bring the reality of expressing one’s voice into the open. They at some point each day lift their heads and howl. Whether due to certain or uncertain triggers they will for that for a few minutes to make certain they have been heard.

At Wild Coast we have a number of untrained singers who have such diversity within their voices that they literally colour the area around them with the energy of sound, making us realise that the power of voice is very remarkable.

It can be the powerful message of a sports crowd, the authority of a leader or the soft dark sound of a person in distress or grief, either way a quick hello is all it takes for a person to form a judgment. In that one word greeting the listener will decide how likeable and trustworthy you are, whether these first instant impressions are accurate or not they will tend to stick.

As we get older, mid-sixties plus, for the few paranoid, our voice starts to change, our vocal chords weaken, larynx cartilages ossify and our respiratory system begins to work less efficiently, with the result men’s voices go up and woman’s voices come down. Regardless that this is a common part of ageing it can affect how others perceive you as well as your own opinion of yourself.

If you want your hello to sound as it always has, there is plenty one can do, like exercises, to keep it sounding young and strong. Although voice changes are normal if you have any cause for concern it is wise to consult a specialist.

Examples of voice exercises are simple. Humming into a straw for a few minutes and gradually adding other sounds like imitating a siren. Read out aloud from the newspaper, book, nighttime story, etc, to your pet, children or partner. This will then build regular voice use into your day.

Let’s go back for a moment to one of my genuine pastimes. Yep, you’ve guessed it, howling at the moon. Nothing gives me greater pleasure than on my own or joined by my dogs to make unruly loud utterances at nighttime instilling fear in passing crickets.

Luckily this month I will get to do it twice as there is a blue moon on 31 July.

According to folklorists, the term blue moon is at least 400 years old. The earliest references suggest that the terminology, blue moon, came from the proverb in 1528 (if the moon is blue we must believe it to be true ). This was used as examples of improbable events or something that could never happen, hence the popular phrase “once in a blue moon”.

Since the moon’s phase period is 29,5 days usually there will be only one full moon each month, as each full moon is earlier than the previous one eventually you will find two full moons in a single month, and although there can be no physical difference in its appearance it is called a blue moon.

The two astronomical definitions of blue moons are, the third full moon is in the astronomical season with four full moons opposed to the usual three with the next timing being 21 May 2016.

The second more rarer type of blue moon is when you have a second full moon in a calendar month with two full moons with the next timing being 31 July, 31 January 2018 and31 March 2018 respectively.

A moon that actually looks blue is a very rare sight. The moon in any phase can appear to be blue when the atmosphere is filled with dust or smoke particles of a certain size, usually after a dust storm or volcanic eruption. The eruptions known to have caused these phenomena are Krakatoa, Mt St Helens and Mount Pinatubo. Red moons, which are far more common than blue moons, are also caused by different sized dust particles as well as by total lunar eclipses.

So with the 31 July pending, with the moon phase in American Indian shaman teachings referred to as the heat moon, whose meanings are quite relative , go on, have a full- moon party, light the beacon and as failure is not an option you won’t need to contact Huston with a problem.

Note that I am the heat moon, I am the fire of all activity and creativity, I am art and beauty who sparks new ideas, in my intense light honour you creatively with the power and strength of your intensions.


As we are celebrating creativity herewith some recipes with a Moroccan flare.

Orange, date and almond salad


•6 peeled and segmented oranges

•100 grams dried apricots cut into quarters

•100 grams flaked almonds slightly toasted

•fresh mint chopped

•whole aniseed

•ground cinnamon

•ground cloves

•honey to taste

•150 grams dates, cut into cubes

•250 ml orange juice


•In a pan heat up the orange juice, cinnamon, and cloves

•Add the honey

•Remove from the heat and place in a large salad bowl

•Mix the remaining ingredients through.

Couscous salad


•Place 500 grams couscous in a bowl whisk through with some boiling water set aside

•chopped parsley

•chopped mint

•100 grams sun-dried tomatoes, blanched and sliced

•2 red onions sliced

•chopped garlic to taste

•lemon juice to taste

•Koisan sea salt

•Rainbow pepper


•Mix all the ingredients together arrange and serve

Chicken tagine with dates and honey

It is essential to slow cook food in the tagine if the heat is too high it can crack and spoil the dish.


•2 kg boneless chicken cubes

•2 red onions sliced

•chopped garlic

•chopped ginger

•ground cumin

•ground coriander

•fresh coriander chopped

•turmeric, ground

•cinnamon, ground

•chilli powder

•nutmeg, ground

•seedless dates


•toasted almonds

•chicken stock

•olive oil


•Marinade the chicken with all the dry ingredients and honey

•Sauté the onions, garlic and ginger

•Add the chicken mixture and cook till ¼ done

•Place in a tagine pan or a slow cooker

•Add stock and olive oil

•Allow to cook very slowly until ready - 160°C

•Garnish with fresh coriander.

Wild Coast Sun Executive Chef



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