-  Diary of an Adventure   -  Thesen Harbour Town Adventures

With the oven sorted, Terry did a stunning dinner in the apartment. A chilled cucumber soup with mint garnish. Herbed rack of lamb, which I cooked (Not quite long enough, as I didn’t allow for the wind factor) on the Weber, served with aubergine, tomato and Parmesan cheese (Peter Goffe-Wood recipe) A desert duo of strawberry and chocolate mouse. A 2004 Rustenberg John Merriman (every bit of the Wine Enthusiast 93 point rating) dug out of Craig’s wine store. de Trafford Cab franc, Delaire Graaf Chardonnay and Tribaut Champagne went superbly with the food.

Blue skies outside the studio, a bunch of white agapanthus with yellow and purple blossoms familiar to the painting taking shape on the canvas. Mum’s summer garden, with the last of the Flanders poppies creating a burst of heat.

The new blank greeting cards with images from my towing boats and Stellenbosch paintings have arrived from Madison, and super smart they do look. They will be on sale in the studio and we need to find a clever way to display them for those browsing the windows of Harbour Town.

Laughter and energy filled the studio as around forty people passed through for a glass of wine and to recognize the end of the building process. My old diaries from Afghanistan, Indonesia and Botswana their own attraction. Terry prepared a feast of nibbles, and the wine bottles ensured that the recycling guy didn’t go away with an empty truck.

Opening the studio early, has attracted a different bunch of people, with those out for their morning exercise stopping past. Still not very good at collecting email contacts for my mailing list!

Sunset watching a Giant Eagle Owl sitting on the parapet wall above the patio. Yellow eyes observing our every move.

A dustbin full of bees made for an interesting rubbish day. They were mostly under the lid of the bin, which fortunately I picked up away from me, so a seething mass of bees fell into the rubbish bin. I managed not to get stung and the efficient bunch at Elements arranged to have them moved.

After the rain, the lagoon is a reflecting pool. Yachts, constantly changing as the holiday season brings old, and new, visitors to this part of paradise. A sprinkling of whom, pass through the studio. Their stories, bringing new life to my paintings.

Latest paintings from the studio

Pink Fluxh

Oil on Canvas 40cmx30cm

At the beach

Oil on Canvas 20cmx20cm
Pete Goffe-Wood’s roast rump of lamb with baked tomato, aubergine and basil (serves 6):

6 ripe plum tomatoes

100g unsalted butter

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

2 large aubergines

100ml extra virgin olive oil

20g basil

150ml cream

100g grated Parmesan

600g baby potatoes

10g rosemary

3 cloves garlic

100ml olive oil

1.2kg lamb rump

60g rocket

Blanch the tomatoes for 10 seconds in furiously boiling water then peel and roughly chop. Sauté in the butter for aproximately 5 minutes until they begin to break down and form a saucy consistency. Remove from the heat, add the finely chopped garlic and season.
Slice aubergine into thin rounds and sauté in a frying pan with theolive oil for 5 minutes or until cooked through and golden brown. Remove from the frying pan and drain on a piece of kitchen paper.
Spoon the tomato into six ceramic bowls and arrange the aubergine on top. Tear up the basil, add to the cream, season with salt and pepper and pour over the aubergine. Sprinkle with grated Parmesan and bake in a moderate oven (180ºC) for about 15 minutes.
Cut the baby potatoes in half and place in a roasting pan with the rosemary, garlic cloves and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and roast in a hot oven (200ºC) until soft and golden brown.
Season the lamb with salt and pepper. Roast in a hot oven (200°C) until medium – aproximately 15 minutes depending on the size of the rumps. Remove from the oven and leave to rest for 5 minutes.
Slice the rumps lengthways and divide evenly onto six plates. Serve with some dressed rocket, roast potatoes and baked aubergine.

In his time Jan has been an electronics, nuclear and power system engineer, a strategist, a humanitarian and an artist. A career path linked by creativity and innovative thinking. Initially trained at the Johannesburg College of Art, Jan has won numerous international awards and has exhibited nationally and internationally. He can be found in his studio ‘Jandreart’ located at Thesen Harbour Town, Knysna.

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