Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventures

Crown for a King

Oil on canvas 20cmx20cm

Prince’s second birthday. All his friends, including Licorice and Popcorn visiting. Benji and Hobo for a beach play. A boereworse braai with new squeaky toys. Chaos.

‘Craig’s and Coreta’s Charity Challenge’, a team run, and MTB jaunt out to Brenton. For the runners, across the iconic Train Bridge, while the cyclists went around over the historic Red Bridge. The climb up the Brenton nights, negotiated by all. My bothersome Achilles reducing me to an ambling shuffle.

A fisherman has been wondering about outside the studio, followed by his corgi type companion, called ‘Come Along’. They have been homeless around Knysna for awhile, having come from Cape Town. The little dog, a ‘Yoda’ personality, and it’s just possible that Obi-Wan lurked behind the facade of the fisherman. After all, the mists on the water could hide any number of worlds.

Christmas. Food shelves and magazines packed with delicacies I can’t touch. Particularly with my current blood sugars that are too high for comfort.

Decided to try and make a diabetic sensitive bûche de Noël. Whipping the egg whites proved to be quite a chore, while separating the egg whites still proved challenging, even with the special separator gadget. I didn’t want to use the cranberry jam that was in the recipe as it has too many sugars. Rather I opted for slow cooked blueberries with a few bits of fresh thyme.

It tasted surprisingly good, needed more cream filling and Im not sure that the 20min cooking time wasn’t a tad long, as it felt too firm which meant i struggled to roll the warm cake. I also used a tea towel as the wax paper was too complicated.

bûche de Noël (CHOCOLATE YULE LOG)

AUTHOR: ANGELA COLEBY

Makes 8 slices

Nutritional Info per slice:

272 Calories,

24g Fat,

8g Protein,

9.6g Total Carbs,

4.3g Fibre,

5.3g Net Carbs

INGREDIENTS

SPONGE

• 6 eggs separated

• 1/3 cup 38g coconut flour

• ½ cup 107g erythritol (or sugar substitute)

• 1/3 cup 28g cocoa powder, unsweetened

• ½ teaspoon baking powder

• ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg

• ½ teaspoon salt

FILLING

• ½ cup 60g heavy/whipped cream, (whipped into stiff peaks)

• 2 tablespoons cranberry chia jamoptional

TOPPING

• 4 oz 112g butter unsalted, softened

• ¼ cup erythritol or sugar substitute

• 6 oz 168g cream cheese, softened

• ¼ cup 22g cocoa powder, unsweetened

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F degrees.

2. Grease and line a long rectangle baking tin with parchment paper. My tin is about 8 inches by 12 inches.

3. Whisk the egg whites until stiff.

4. In another bowl whisk the egg yolks and erythritol together.

5. Add the remaining cake ingredients to the egg yolk mixture and combine well.

6. Fold in the egg whites to the cake mixture.

7. Spoon into the baking tin and smooth evenly.

8. Bake for 20 minutes until firm.

9. Remove from the oven and place a piece of parchment paper over the cake whilst still warm (be careful not to burn yourself!).

10. Remove the cake from the tin, keeping the parchment paper on the bottom of the tin so that the cake has parchment paper either side of it.

11. Gently roll the cake from the smaller edge into a swiss roll shape. This will make it easier to unroll and fill later.

12. Set aside to cool.

13. Once the cake is cool, gently unroll the cake from the parchment paper and spread with the cranberry chia jam. Add an even layer of the whipped cream.

14. Gently roll the cake back into the swiss roll shape.

15. Place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to help keep its shape.

16. Make the topping by blending the butter and cream cheese together until smooth.

17. Add the erythritol and cocoa powder and beat until smooth and blended.

Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventures

The panorama outside the window shifts daily with visiting yacht arrivals and departures. Fleur de Passion of the The Ocean Mapping Expedition, our new neighbour on the estuary.(http://www.omexpedition.ch/index.php/en/)

King Protea on the easel. Small canvases as I sort different approaches from the crazy, to the abstract.

Doing my best to look after my Achilles that thankfully has eased after a painful few days. My running shoes growing mould and my bicycle rusty as a coffee walk the extent of my activities. This does mean, with all the fabulous food and wine I have enjoyed with visiting friends that my new, super slick, high vis cycling top has a distinct ‘silk-worm’ snugness!

Silk scarf craziness as the borders seem to have changed with the file transfer of the updated images to the manufacturer. The option of including a tag that indicates that the scarves are 100% silk, and a card the tells the story of the painting, to be considered. Even for the glamorous French woman who was so thrilled with her scarf that she wore it out from the studio to dinner.

Lunch menu on the Kamado Jan. Herb crusted rack of lamb, with roasted cauliflower in browned butter. Grilled aubergine and Caprese salad. Radfordale Chardonnay. Piekenierskloof Grenache with the Colmant MCC Rose, the star. A starter of Courgette Bellini with cream cheese and salmon.

A second night of storms. The rain welcome. If not by the tourists who are having their expected sun filled holiday turned to mush.

For Prince, it’s a frightening time of noise in an energy charged atmosphere. Compounded by the storm driven high seas of the full moon. Hence, disturbed nights that have me a tad grumpy.

Roasted Cauliflower with Brown Butter

• 1 cauliflower

• 1 tablespoon canola oil

• 3 ounces/80 grams butter, at room temperature or softened

• kosher salt

1. Preheat your oven to 220˚C.

2. Cut the stem off the cauliflower as close to the base as possible and remove any leaves. Rub oil all over the cauliflower.

3. Put the cauliflower in an oven-proof skillet. Slide the pan into the oven and roast the cauliflower for 45 minutes. Remove it from the oven and smear the soft butter over the surface. Sprinkle with a four-finger pinch of salt. Roast the cauliflower for another 30 to 45 minutes, basting it several times with the butter, which will have browned. The cauliflower in the picture has about 15 more minutes of roasting. It’s done when you can insert a paring knife into it and feel no resistence. It should be completely tender.

4. delicious thing to do with the browned butter: whisk in lemon juice, minced anchovies, and whatever chopped herb you prefer

Diary of an Adventure

Kommetjie Adventures

‘Surfers’, my painting of dolphin taken from a photo out along Brenton beach. Movement to capture their joyful play the essence of the painting on a large canvas (2mx0,7m) that allowed me to indulge in the different colours of the sea.

I used the high translucency of phthalo blue and green as the primary colours in the water, adding lemon yellow to get a turquoise tint that was still transparent. Smudges of permanent magenta and cobalt blue gave a grayish tinge for to assist in the contrast of the sea spray.

The Forager in Scarborough our lunch stop after struggling to find shade parking for Prince and wanting to be out of the weekend afternoon traffic chaos that Cape Town ties itself up in. Pleasantly surprised that it was dog friendly. A Rosé from Steenberg, with a fillet wrap of some description. A tad dissapointing that the coconut wrap described on the menu is no longer available, which meant most of the meal had to be discarded.

Surrounded by a group of cyclists on the last stage of their Cape tour. All done on ebikes! We noticed that a couple of them were wearing nifty mirrors on their glasses to keep track of what was happening behind them. When I queried as to where they are available, the guy unclipped it and handed it to me. Amazing.

Beach walk in the sunshine. Prince still terribly afraid of the crashing surf. Border Collie mayhem once he was coaxed onto the beach, into a world of dog craziness. Watching the flow of the sea and surfers for my painting of the dolphins.

Live Bait at Muizenberg, simply fabulous. Distracted by the changing light on the sea. Gentle flavours from the ‘92 Boschendal Lanoy from somewhere in Alan’s stash, with the yellowtail, which was grilled to perfection. A quick trip through the village that continues its transformation from the rundown, shambolic, to quirky, interesting.

Blue tape making a reappearance on my leg as I seem to have strained my Achilles at some point. Nothing crazy in my daily running or cycling. Still, a nuisance.

Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventures

Air reverberating with the sounds of helicopters heading to the fire front, the news that one of my collectors homes had burnt down. 3 generations of memories lost, and my paintings.

Blood sugars suddenly trampolining all over the place (7.8 mmol/L -3.8 mmol/L) after a month of being stable. Averaging 6.0 mmol/L with a standard deviation of 0,7. Diabetic carbs at 23grams, well within the 50 gram range. Particularly noticeable an hour after exercise, with cycling creating the biggest swings. Dehydration with the onset of warmer weather?

‘A Pair of Kings’. A small painting of the King Protea on the studio table that reminded me of Van Gogh’s ‘Still Life with Two Sunflowers’ painted in Paris, 1887.

After the contortions to create the small works my shoulders and hands are straining with the demands of covering the large surface for my painting of dolphins. The rough canvas blistering fingers already a tad sensitive from not concentrating when changing hot braai grids on the Kamado Jan for the slow cooked fillet.

The Forest. Full of magic. Roses of every hue, perfuming the world. Ghost tendrils. Air plants in the setting sun. Timeless laughter with excellent wine and an exquisite dinner under a star filled sky. Woodcutters Cottages, another gem in our part of paradise.

Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventures

The first batch of scarves from the ‘Wearable Art’ range sent to their new homes. The sample of the ‘Coral Tree’ scarf finally released through customs. Vibrant, with the smudges from my fingers in the painting, creating pattern waves on the silk. Orders placed with delivery scheduled for end of Nov, early Dec.

Chef Hirsch. Starter of salmon on cucumber rounds with a zezty avo topping served with an excellent Newton Johnson Albariño. ‘It’s a smile, it’s a kiss, it’s a sip of wine’ Vivino. Kingklip in a tomato sauce, beef fillet and a heap of greens ensured we didn’t go hungry.

Bunch of small paintings to replace those that have sold. A series of elephants in acrylic, and one of a rhino based on the larger painting ‘unicorn’.

Managed to get out early for my ride up Phantom and then decided to see how things were at Homtini after the fires. Lots of smoke over Sedgfield way and a bit of smoke sitting in the valley, trapped by the cool morning air. My ‘thermometer toe’ registering that it was still chilly out! Monkeys and birds around. Perhaps driven to this part of the Forest that hasn’t burnt?

Passing the yellow and green clad ‘Working for Fire’ warriors, faces daubed with anti-burn cream heading out for a new shift at first light. Columns of smoke against the blue skies and green farm lands as much a indicator of the threats to be faced, as gunfire in conflict states.

Quick visit from Lesa and Alan gave me another opportunity to use the Kamado Jan. Nothing too crazy for this cook given that the studio was busy with tourists. We still managed to keep the bottle recycling plant working at full pace.

Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventure

Cooling morning mist lifting, sun already hot. A dramatic change to the apocalypse skies with fires again burning through the Forests. Blankets of ash carried by the winds.

While it would be good to use these crazy times to account for my laboured running, it’s probably more a result of too much red wine and the overpowering scent of the star jasmine seizing my sinuses.

Hands cramping with the small paintings I’m busy doing. A series based on the King Protea flowering on Thesen and the stunning display of Pincushion Protea at Pezula.

A gazillion delays in getting the latest scarf order cleared through customs. Unexpected, frustrating and expensive. A good response to them with only a couple left from the first order. Hopefully the next bunch will arrive before the holiday season.

Ceviche with avo Cote de boeuf and the sweet potato gratin all cooked on the Kamado Jan. Some of the beef was tough Dissapointing.

Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventures

Calf muscle a tad unhappy. Singed fingers from a super hot braai grill that was engulfed in flames from the burning duck fat. This cooking is dangerous stuff.

Beach walk with Prince at the Wild Side. The sea rough with deep pools that kept him out of the water for most of the walk. Probably not as much fun, but at least he hasn’t been ill.

Crusted lamb ribs with anchovy and parsley salsa. 2 hours on the Big Red Egg in a tinfoil bath, before letting them cool (another 3 hours) and then grilling them over the fire on a Teflon sheet with their crust of Parmesan cheese, rather than the flour and bread crumbs of the recipe. Rosemary rather than celery, as I don’t like celery. And it’s lamb after all.

‘Reading’ my painting of a woman sitting at the ‘Reflections Seed Pod’, in Steenbok Park. Under blue skies, summer flowers amongst the new green grass. The Reflections Seed Pod statue commemorates the June 17 fires that swept through Knysna. A sacred space for remembrance, gratitude and reflection.

http://www.steenboknaturereserve.org.za/news/

Despite the early hour, it was already warm on the a ride up Phantom Pass. My legs fatigued from running. Lungs gasping, which only resulted in a mouthful of bugs! Fortunately our breakfast stop, at the newly opened Knysna Hollow, was much tastier.

The hotel burnt down in the fires and has been transformed in its reconstruction. Elegant, clean, light-filled and comfortable. One of those places where a morning. Or a day?, will disappear. A tad sad that they haven’t managed to bring in any large trees to soften the harsh lines of the new buildings. Envious that my paintings aren’t on the walls.

The studio has had a busy month, after a quiet winter. Hopefully a good indication of the months ahead. Still waiting for the next bunch of sample silk scarves to arrive. Holidays, customs and the unexpected have delayed things by a few weeks and I’m starting to wonder if I will get the next order sorted in time for Christmas? Guess it’s all a learning curve, and there will be next Christmas. I have decided to do a 30 paintings in 30 days challenge to make sure I have enough small paintings, for those ‘unique Christmas gifts’ as this week has seen a bunch leaving the studio.

The smell of salt on the air. Entwined with the heady scent of the star jasmine flowering on the patio.

CRUSTED LAMB RIBS WITH ANCHOVY-AND-PARSLEY SALSA

Woolworths TASTE1 Oct 2018

Serves 6 to 8

EASY

Preparation: 30 minutes, plus cooling time (another 3 hours)

Cooking: 2 hours 20 minutes

Woolworths free-range farm-style lamb ribs 1.2 kg

carrots 2, peeled and cut into chunks

celery 2 sticks, cut into chunks (I used rosemary as I don’t like celery. And it’s lamb after all)

leeks 2, cut into chunks

Woolworths organic beef stock 2 litres

sunflower oil, for deep-frying

flour 120 g

free-range eggs 3, beaten

panko breadcrumbs 200 g

For the anchovy-and-parsley salsa:

anchovy fillets 12

garlic 2 cloves,

chopped lemons 2, juiced

extra virgin olive oil ¼ cup

Italian parsley 30 g, roughly chopped

1 Preheat the oven to 180°C. Place the ribs into a deep ovenproof dish with the carrots, celery and leeks. Pour over the beef stock making sure that everything is covered.

2 Cover the dish with foil and braise in the oven for 2 hours, until soft.

3 Remove the dish from the oven, set aside and allow the ribs to cool completely in the liquid. (another 3 hours)

4 Once the meat is cold, remove it from the liquid and portion into individual ribs. Heat the oil in a deep saucepan.

5 Dip the ribs into the flour, then into the egg and the breadcrumbs. Deep-fry each rib until golden brown.

6 To make the salsa, place all the ingredients into a blender and process until chunky.

Serve with the ribs Waterford Kevin Arnol

Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventures

Finally managed to regulate the fire in the Kamado Jan low enough to do a slow cook that didn’t incinerate the food. The ducks, after six hours of cooking, were crisp and succulent, although the recommended temperature of 120 C was still a tad high.

The duck is stuffed with grapefruit and lemons, then slow cooked until the meat is falling off the bones and the skin perfectly crisped. Instead of the cherries, Terry did blueberries in their own juices, which worked a treat. Served with Ceviche-style summer squash and fennel in butter.

Delicious starter, that also looked amazing, of Teriyaki salmon with cauliflower noodles.

‘Unicorn’ a painting of a rhino. Depicting uncertainty and vulnerability Heading for extinction as the scourge of poaching continues to decimate the rhino population.

Birthdays seemingly to merge into each other with care taken by everyone to ensure that my crazy diabetic restrictions were catered for. Burger patties with avo and a scrumptious chocolate mousse at the recently rebuilt Knysna Hollow Estate.

I certainly felt the effects of a tad too much Sarronsberg Shiraz on my run with Craig to East Head, in our scary ‘funky shorts’. The sea freezing. The run, a breather before his birthday and the superb J9 wine cellar.

Busy time in the studio, with paintings heading to their new homes. Amazing that hard earned money is paid for my smearing of paint.

Movement of light recalls impressionist and Seurat-like neo-impressionist landscaping in Trail Through the Woods as Jan Raats magnifies it handsomely with Forest Walk.

https://www.knysnaplettherald.com/News/Article/General/seeing-the-wood-for-the-trees-in-fine-forest-exhibit-201810101153

Diary of an Adventure

Greyton Adventures

Oak trees, lavender, roses, birds. Mist, sunshine and butterflies. Horses, aimlessly wondering along the main road in the early morning.

A surreal world beneath the mountain. Immaculate and cared for.

‘Linda’s Breasts’, not on the menu. Definitely worth asking for at Via’s. A hint of warmth in the spices used on the chicken breast, transformative. While the chips looked impossibly tempting, there was nothing wrong with my roast veggies. Except, they were veggies! The aromas from the coffee roaster, intoxicating.

I did a morning painting demonstration. A floral painting of a lily, orchid sort of flower in my Mums garden. White flowers adding that touch of mystery as to the approach. The painting was influenced by the ‘Wearable Art’ range of silk scarves I’m focusing on, which influenced the colours. The influence of Van Gogh’s almond blossoms in the turquoise background.

“My work was going well,” he informed his brother, “the last canvas of branches in blossom – you will see that it is perhaps the best, the most patiently worked thing I had done, painted with calm and with greater firmness of touch. And the next day, down like a brute.”

Interesting to have artists painting their own pictures during the demonstration. I did get tied down a tad by the delicate fingers of the flowers.

Prince still struggling with the effects of ‘salt poisoning’ from our play on the beach, chasing stones into the surf and ingesting too much salt water. Will need to carry grease water to hydrate him and keep his playing along the sand, rather than in the water.

Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventures

Photo credit Elle Redman

Sunshine for a beach play at Buffels. Whales in the distance Prince not well. We can only guess that he ate something at the beach that made him so ill.

Defined by beauty, in the Forest, there is a world where imagination has no boundaries. ‘ForesTree’, the new exhibition at the Old Goal has beautiful works that captivate. Tranquil. Absorbing. Energizing. I didn’t find a flow through the curators hanging of the works. Something I will go back and search for. Thrilled that my paining ‘Forest Walk’ is part of the exhibition.

First sea swim after a run to East Head. Fingers a tad transparent from the less than warm water.

Stomach muscles pulverized by the ride through the forest. The bicycle doing its best to throw me off through the wash-always, and drifts of sand washed down by the storms. Tree blocks and stretches of water – of unknown depth – keeping us alert. Valleys of yellow flowers and gazillions of butterflies. Spoilt we are.

Coconut-chocolate fudge squares a winner. Terry’s has been searching for a fuel ‘fat bomb’ that is diabetic sensitive for the afternoon blood sugar slumps and during long rides. That they are tasty enough for a coffee desert an additional bonus. A dessert spoon of local honey in the mixture, cut into 1 cm squares, ensures only a nominal amount of natural sugar in each square.

Dairy Free Coconut Chocolate Fudge

A delicious dairy free coconut chocolate fudge made with coconut oil and almond or coconut milk. This low carb chocolate fudge makes a tasty fat bomb snack.

Course Snack

Cuisine American

Keyword low carb candy

Prep Time 5 minutes

Total Time 5 minutes

Servings 16 squares

Calories 77 kcal

Author Lisa | Low Carb Yum

Ingredients

• 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

• 1/2 cup coconut oil softened

• 1/3 cup unsweetened flaked coconut

• 1/3 cup unsweetened coconut milk. Can add 1/2 cup if you keep it in deep freeze. Don’t use coconut cream. Does not work.

• 1-2 tablespoons honey

• Depending on how sweet you like it

• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

• Optional. A pinch of salt.

Instructions

0. Melt coconut oil and combine with cocoa powder. Blend well.

0. Add all other ingredients and use hand beater to blend well

0. Spread out into a small square or rectangular container lined with parchment paper.

0. Refrigerate until fudge is hardened.

0. Remove fudge from container and cut into squares.

0. Place in deep freeze

Recipe Notes

Makes 16 small squares