The perfect padkos

Asian-style meatball snacks

Preparation: 45 min | Cooking: 20 min | Serves 8-10



¼ meatball mixture (see recipe)

3 ml (generous ½ tsp) ground ginger sesame seeds for coating the meatballs oil for frying


4 garlic cloves, finely chopped

2 red chillies, seeded and finely chopped

15 ml (1 tbsp) sugar juice of 1 lime

60 ml (¼ cup) fish sauce

60 ml (¼ cup) water

1 spring onion, chopped

To serve

leaves of 1 iceberg lettuce

1 carrot, peeled and julienned

1 small cucumber, peeled, seeded and julienned

2 spring onions, julienned

100 g bean sprouts

handful each of fresh mint and


pickled ginger



  • Put the meatball mixture in a bowl and mix in the ground ginger.
  • Shape into small balls
  • And roll in the sesame seeds to coat. Brown in the oil, cover and cook for a few minutes until done.


  • Mix the ingredients and spoon into a small bowl.

To serve

  • Arrange the lettuce, carrot, cucumber, spring onion and in bowls on the table.
  • Each person can assemble their own snack: take a lettuce leaf and add carrot, cucumber and spring onion strips.
  • Sprinkle bean sprouts, herbs and pickled ginger over and top with a meatball.
  • Roll up and enjoy with the dip.

Tomato and chicken empanadas with basil oil

Preparation: 40 min | Cooking: 12-15 min a batch| Chilling: 30 min| Makes about 24 pastries



750ml (3c) flour

5ml (1t) salt

125g cold butter, cubed

1 egg

125ml (½c) milk

Basil oil

20g fresh basil, roughly shredded

125ml (½c) olive oil


1 cooked chicken, deboned, skinned and shredded

125ml (½c) sun-dried tomatoes, chopped

2 rounds feta cheese, roughly crumbled

150g mozzarella cheese, grated grated zest of 1 lemon

salt and freshly ground pepper


1 egg yolk, lightly whisked


  • Preheat the oven to
  • 180°C. Line a baking sheet with baking paper.


  • Put the flour and salt in the bowl of a food processor, add the butter and pulse
  • until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
  • Add the egg and half the milk and pulse until the dough starts to bind. Add the rest of the milk little by little until a dough forms Remove the dough and knead lightly.
  • Shape into a ball, cover with Clingfilm and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

Basil oil

  • Put the basil and olive oil in a small saucepan. Heat over a low heat until bubbles start forming around the basil. Remove from the stove and set aside to cool completely.


  • Combine the ingredients well. Add 60ml (¼c) of the cooled basil oil and mix.


  • Roll out the pastry on a floured surface to about 2mm thick. Using a cookie cutter, cut into 10cm rounds.
  • Brush a little egg yolk around the edge of each pastry round. Spoon filling into the
  • middle and fold the pastry over to form halfmoon-shaped pastries. Fold in the edges and pinch to seal.
  • Arrange the empanadas on the prepared baking sheet and brush lightly with egg yolk.
  • Bake for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown and done. Serve with the
  • rest of the basil oil for dipping.

 Tip : The empanadas can be made a day or two in advance. Store in the fridge and serve hot or cold.

Bacon and butternut muffins with bean salad

Preparation: 10 min | Cooking: 30-35 min | Serves 4


1 small butternut, peeled and diced

15 ml (1 T) olive oil

100 g bacon, crisply fried

100 g Cheddar cheese, grated

10 g fresh parsley, chopped

3 eggs

250 ml (1 c) milk

250 ml (1 c) cake flour

250 ml (1 c) Wholewheat flour

20 ml (4 t) baking powder pinch of salt

Bean salad

2 cans (410 g each) butterbeans

10 g fresh mixed herbs juice and grated zest of 1 lemon

15 ml (1 T) olive oil salt and pepper


  • Preheat the oven to 200 °C. Grease a baking sheet with nonstick spray.
  • Grease 12 muffin tin hollows well with nonstick spray.
  • Spread out the butternut on the prepared baking sheet.
  • Drizzle the oil over and roast for 15 minutes or until soft.
  • Transfer to a mixing bowl. Add the bacon, cheese and parsley and mix lightly.
  • Whisk the eggs and milk together. Pour into the butternut mixture. Mix through.
  • Add the rest of the ingredients and stir until just mixed.
  • Divide the mixture among the muffin tin hollows and bake for 15-20 minutes or until done.

Bean salad

  • Mix the ingredients well.Serve with the muffins.


Preparation: 1 hour | Cooking: 30 min | Makes about 80 Small samoosas



15ml (1T) oil

1 onion, finely chopped

2 garlic cloves, crushed

5cm fresh ginger, grated

2 carrots, grated

350g lean beef mince

250ml (1c) cooked brown lentils

30ml (2T) roasted masala

5ml (1t) ground cumin

2ml (½t) ground coriander

5ml (1t) salt 5ml (1t) pepper

30ml (2T) chutney

To finish

about 80 small samosa pastry sheets

oil for deep-frying



  • Heat the oil in a deep pan and fry the onion until soft.
  • Add the garlic, ginger and carrots and stirfry for a minute.
  • Add the mince and brown. Mix in the rest of the ingredients
  • and stir-fry for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool slightly.

To finish

  • Lay a sheet of pastry on a work surface and spoon a little filling onto the bottom corner.
  • Fold the corner over the filling to form a triangle.
  • Continue folding the triangle over until the end of the pastry sheet. Seal the end with water. Repeat with the rest of the pastry and filling.
  • Heat the oil and deep-fry the samosas in batches until golden brown and crispy.
  • Drain on paper towels. Make quick paaper bites (samosa chips) from leftover samosa pastry. Cut into largish pieces and deep-fry until crispy.
  • Drain on paper towels and season with spices of your choice.

Granola bars

Preparation: 10 min | Cooking: 15 min | Makes 16-20 bars


200 g mixed nuts

500 ml (2 c) oats 

30 ml (2 T) chia seeds

125 ml (1/2 c)



80 ml (1⁄3 c) coconut


60 ml (1/4 c) honey

2 ml (1/2 t) ground



100 g dark chocolate

almond flakes, coconut

flakes and sea salt



  • Preheat the oven to 180 °C. Line a greased baking tin with baking paper and grease
  • more with nonstick spray.
  • Mix the nuts and oats and divide into two equal portions.
  • Process one portion in a food processor until as fine as flour.
  • Pulse the rest of the nuts and oats until slightly finer.
  • Mix the two portions and add the chia seeds and coconut.
  • Heat the coconut oil, honey and cinnamon together until runny. Pour over the oats and nut mixture and mix well.
  • Spoon into the prepared tin and press down firmly. Bake for
  • 15 minutes or until firm. Allow to cool.


  • Melt the chocolate and spread over the granola. Sprinkle almond, coconut and sea salt flakes over and cool until firm. Cut into bars.

Energy balls

Preparation: 20 min | Standing: 15 min | Makes Balls 18 balls


250 g dates, finely chopped

60 ml (¼ c) boiling water

50 g almonds

50 g sunflower seeds

125 ml (½ c) oats

30 ml (2 T) cocoa powder

15 ml (1 T) coconut or sunflower oil

50 g dark chocolate, finely chopped

(optional) desiccated coconut


  • Put the dates in a glass bowl. Pour the boiling water over and soak for at least 15 minutes.
  • Blitz the almonds and sunflower seeds in a food processor until roughly blended. Add the dates and
  • blitz for 10 seconds. Add the oats, cocoa powder and oil and blitz until well mixed.
  • Add the chocolate (if using) and blitz again for 10 seconds.
  • Shape into walnut size balls and roll in the coconut to coat. Allow to cool.
  • Store in an airtight container in the fridge up to three weeks.

Date triangles

Preparation: 15 min | Cooking :10 Min | Makes 32


220 g dates, pitted and chopped

60 ml (1/4c) peanut butter or nut butter

15 ml (1 T) finely grated fresh ginger (optional)

60 ml (1/4 c) maple syrup or honey

250 ml (1 c) nuts and seeds (not flaxseeds), chopped

375 ml (1 1/2 c) desiccated coconut, oats or puffed quinoa

50 g dark chocolate, melted


  • Process the dates, peanut or nut butter, ginger (if using) and maple syrup or honey to a 
  • paste in a food processor (add a little boiling water if it’s too stiff). Stir in the nuts, seeds and
  • coconut, oats or quinoa and mix well.
  • Press into a greased baking tin and chill in the fridge to firm up.
  • Cut into triangles and dip in melted chocolate. Allow to set.

Coconut treats

Preparation: 10 min | Cooking: 10-12 min | Makes about 30 Treats


3 ripe bananas, mashed

80 ml (1⁄3 c) unsweetened tart apples, mashed

500 ml (2 c) desiccated coconut

250 ml (1 c) oats or extra desiccated coconut

60 ml (. c) peanut butter

45 ml (3 T) honey (optional)

60 ml (. c) cocoa powder

pinch of salt

5 ml (1 t) vanilla essence

To finish

extra cocoa powder (optional)


Preheat the oven to 180 °C. Grease a baking sheet and line with baking paper.

Mix the mashed bananas and apples well.

Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well.

Put teaspoonfuls of the mixture on the baking sheet and bake for 10-12 minutes or until done.

To finish

Dust with cocoa powder if you like.

Pizza wheels


500 g readymade bread dough

60 ml (1/4 c) passata

300 g cheese sausages, sliced

10 ml (2 t) chopped fresh oregano

250 ml (1 c) mozzarella cheese, grated



  • Preheat the oven to 190?C. Spray a large baking sheet with cooking spray.
  • Roll out the dough until about 3—5 mm thick.
  • Spread with passata and arrange the sliced sausages on top.
  • Sprinkle oregano and cheese over and roll up.
  • Cut into 1,5 cm thick rounds and arrange on a baking sheet.
  • Bake for about 20 minutes until done.

Baked veggie parcels

Preparation: 10 min | Cooking: 20-25 min | Serves 4


1 head broccoli, broken into florets

30ml (2T) olive oil

1 onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 chilli, chopped

2 x 410g cans red kidney beans, drained and rinsed

2ml (½t) ground cumin

1ml (¼ t) ground cinnamon

10g fresh coriander, finely chopped

15ml (1T) lemon juice

salt and freshly ground pepper

4 tortillas

extra olive oil for drizzling

To serve

60ml (¼c) sour cream



  • Preheat the oven to 200°C. Grease a baking sheet with a little oil.
  • Place the broccoli in a glass bowl and add boiling water to cover the florets. Allow to stand for 10 minutes, drain and set aside.
  • Heat the oil in a large pan and fry the onion, garlic and chilli until soft and fragrant.
  • Add the beans, cumin and cinnamon and stirfry for 10 min.
  • Stir through the coriander and season with the lemon juice, salt and pepper. Add the broccoli and mix through.
  • Spoon some of the mixture into the middle of each tortilla, fold over the sides and roll up.
  • Arrange on the prepared baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. Grill for 10-15 min or until golden and crispy.

To serve

  • Serve with the sour cream, chopped spring onions* and extra chilli*.

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