Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventures

‘Surfers in the sky’

Oil on canvas 60cmx90vm

Delicate, quick strokes, ethereal, sensitive. My painting for the Sanlam Portrait submission. An emotional journey.

The estuary is still, a reflecting pond for the lights of the town as evening settles into the mist that promises another warm autumn day.

A last glass of Shiraz rescued, while the dishwasher hums. The collection of empty wine bottles consigned to the recycling bag.

Camembert, wrapped in prosciutto, a runny ooze of delicious. Bacon wrapped chicken, with a green salad and roasted tomatoes, a simple dinner with friends that bubbled with joy and laughter. The Lourensford Viognier, definitely the wine pairing star.

Our tranquil world hurtled into the chaos of screaming engines, burning rubber and testosterone. Race weekend, with the Simola Hill Climb.

A haute-cuisine afternoon, where the art of each dish, with its selected wine was a counterfoil for the exquisite art and the light changing across the estuary. Special moments of sumptuousness.

PROSCIUTTO-WRAPPED BAKED CAMEMBERT

Suggested 250g Camembert: Use either Dalewood Wineland Chefs Camembert™ or a Dalewood Traditional Camembert 250g

Ingredients:

6 fresh sage leaves

1 large 250g Camembert

6 large slices prosciutto

12 slices French bread stick (baguette), toasted

Method:

Preheat oven to 180°C.

Line a baking tray with non-stick baking paper.

Arrange 3 sage leaves on top of the Camembert. Place 3 slices of prosciutto over the sage.

Carefully turn the Camembert over and fold in the ends of the prosciutto slices to enclose.

Repeat with the remaining sage and prosciutto to completely enclose the Camembert.

Place the Camembert on the lined tray.

Bake for 15 minutes or until the prosciutto is crisp and the Camembert is soft.

Transfer to a serving platter and serve with the bread.

www.taste.c

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Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventures

Rose stopped past the studio to see the painting of the Oyster Collectors that I painted from her photograph

Erica’s in purple and pinks between banks of grey salt-bush alongside the paths through the Forest. Enough rain to turn trails into rivers that extra element of fun.

Colours swirling on the canvas for my painting of the Heads. Getting a tad lost in the water of the estuary.

Easter treat damage limitation with a run to the bottom of Phantom Pass. Ile de Pain, hot-cross bun with its apricot jam glaze and icing sugar crust (52grams of carbs) probably wasn’t sensible.

Bunch of people visiting which gave us the opportunity to try a couple of different places in our part of paradise. The late afternoon ferry out to the rebuilt Featherbed restaurant for their forest dinner. The building spectacular, and while the food might not be memorable there was plenty of variety, even for a diabetic.

Parmesan crusted kingklip, with a chilly/butter stuffing at Fatfish, looked amazing and was delicious. No less so than the tempura-prawn salad, with a great selection of wines by-the-glass.

Sold

Oil on canvas 20cmx20cm

Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventure

Fishing

Oil on canvas 20cmx20cm

Painting of Peter ‘Come Along’ received a Special Recognition Award for ‘Outstanding Art’ at the LST 2019 Figurative Online Exhibition. Amongst the top 15 paintings chosen from 845 entries, from 35 countries.

This is the fifth year in a row that my portraits have received international recognition.

Baked cheesy brinjals, from the latest Taste magazine, must be the most flavoursome brinjal dish imaginable. The fire adds smokiness that transforms the bitter flavours of brinjals, while the cheese filling adds pure deliciousness. Didn’t manage to get the grilled colour on the cheese from the Kamado Jan, and might need to get one of those flame torch things.

Painting of the dueling elephants at Ruha sold and heading to its new home in Ireland. A painting that was originally damaged on the trip back from Tanzania, and one that highlighted the tension of being in Tanzania. Incredible scenery and an impossible work environment. Only a couple of the paintings from that period still available. Another trip needed?

Police here for the break into the studio. Our security guys with CCTV footage identifying the alleged thief. A tad more vigilance needed on my part.

In the novel I’m reading, Stromboli were mentioned. According to google, it’s an Italian-American dish that can have all manner of fillings rolled into a rectangle of pizza dough. Using the mozzarella diabetic base, I did the broccoli as well as a ham and broccoli version. Couldn’t find Provolone so the cheese balance wasn’t quiet correct, but still delicious.

After a few requests recently to package paintings that weren’t my work for shipping, I’m putting together a Professional Painting Packaging Service for both local and international destinations. While styrofoam is recommended as additional protection for the paintings, I’m searching for an environmentally friendly alternative.

Broccoli & Cheese Stromboli

Makes one 12-inch stuffed roll; serves 4-6
From Pizza by Brigit Binns

salt

1 1/2 cups (3 oz) broccoli florets

2/3 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese

2 oz sliced provolone cheese, torn into small pieces

2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh basil leaves

1 ball thin-crust pizza dough (recipe follows), at room temperature

all-purpose flour for dusting

salt & freshly ground black pepper

olive oil for brushing

coarse sea salt for sprinkling

Place a pizza stone on a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat to 400 F. Let the pan stone heat for 45-60 minutes.

Fill a saucepan with one inch of water and bring to a simmer. Place broccoli in a mesh strainer or steamer basket and place over the simmering water, not letting the broccoli touch the water. Cover and steam for 5-7 minutes until crisp tender. Remove strainer or basket from saucepan and let cool. Coarsely chop the broccoli and set aside. In a large bowl combine the ricotta, provolone, and basil. Mix well.

Place a large sheet of parchment paper on a pizza peel or large rimless baking sheet and place the ball of dough in the center. Dust the top of the dough with flour and, using a rolling pin, roll out to a 9-by-12-inch rectangle of even thickness. If the dough springs back, let it rest, uncovered, for a few minutes then continue. This video by Peter Reinhart demonstrates how to shape pizza dough for stromboli. Cover the dough rectangle with a clean kitchen towel and let rise for 10 minutes.

With the long side of the dough facing you, spread the cheese mixture evenly over the dough, leaving a 1-inch border uncovered on all sides. Scatter the broccoli evenly over the cheese and season generously with salt and pepper. Starting with the long edge nearest you, gently roll up the dough, lightly compressing the filling. Crimp firmly to seal, but avoid pressing down too hard. Turn the stuffed roll seam side down, cover with a clean kitchen towel, and let rise for 5 minutes. Brush the roll lightly with olive oil, cut a few small steam vents in the top, and sprinkle with coarse sea salt. Carefully slide the roll-topped parchment onto the hot pizza stone. Bake until golden brown, about 25 minutes.

Using the pizza peel or a rimless baking sheet, remove the stromboli from the oven and transfer to a cutting board. Let the stromboli stand for 15 minutes then use a serrated knife to slice it crosswise into rounds.

https://www.handletheheat.com/brocco

Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventures

‘Cornflower’

Oil on canvas 76cmx102cm

A grey of Cobalt Blue and Burnt Sienna, lightened with Zinc White and then mixed with French Ultramarine Blue for the cornflower colour. The striking architectural forms of the leaves, Green Oxide with the grey and white against the Magenta Grey background colour of the painting.

I used a different technique to keep the petals from becoming heavy blocks of paint, wiping the paint from the canvas with tissues. A tad messy.

After far too long nursing my troublesome Achilles , a run to East Head. Fabulous. Grumpy with my throat closing and a head full of cold.

The mozzarella ‘pastry’ proving versatile for a chocolate French tart crust, as well as an upside down tomato tart. The tarte-au-chocolate, simply scrumptious. Although diabetic-sensitive, seriously good French food, even in small portions.

Opening of the new Philemon Hlungwani exhibition at Knysna Fine Art underwhelming, which made me take a harder look at my paintings. While his craftsmanship has improved over the years, from the raw, hostile charcoal marks on paper, to assured, crafted works, everything looks the same. Same subject. Same technique. Still unique and instantly recognisable, it’s less honest and more contrived. To please the market?

TARTE AU CHOCOLAT

Chocolate Tart, a crisp buttery tart shell made with the mozzarella cheese ‘pastry’, filled with a velvety-smooth dark chocolate ganache.

Ingredients

For the base

170 grams grated mozzarella cheese

1 tbsp butter

½ cup fine almond flour

¼ cup coconut flour

1 tsp baking powder

¼ tsp salt

1 large egg

Ganache filling

225 grams (8 ounces) bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

2/3 cup (160 grams) heavy cream

2 large egg yolks, at room temperature

2 tablespoons (30 grams; 1 ounce) unsalted butter, at room temperature

½ moist, plump vanilla bean, split lengthwise

For the crust

· Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C).

· In a large saucepan, melt the cheese and butter together over low heat until they are melted and can be stirred together. Remove from heat and add almond flour, coconut flour, baking powder, and salt.

· Add the egg and stir everything together until a cohesive dough forms. Use a rubber spatula to really knead it up against the sides of the pan. It may still contain some streaks of cheese.

· Transfer to the prepared pan and knead a few more times until uniform. If your dough is very sticky, work in another tablespoon or two of almond flour. Cover the dough with another piece of parchment and roll out to a 12-inch (30 cm) circle.

· Line the pie dish with parchment paper underneath the crust to keep it from sticking.

· Cooking time for the crust 7-10minutes.

· Rest in the fridge overnight if possible.

For the filling and assembly

· Place the finely chopped chocolate in a heat-resistant bowl and set it aside.

· Ensure that the butter is soft but not oily and set it aside in a small bowl. If necessary, work it with a spatula or the back of a spoon to soften it some more.

· In a small bowl beat 1 tablespoon of the heavy cream with the egg yolks until the mixture is just smooth.

· Place the rest of the cream into a saucepan along with the split vanilla bean and bring to a boil. Remove the vanilla bean and pour the hot cream over the chocolate pieces. Let sit for 30 seconds. Using a whisk, delicately blend the cream into the chocolate. Allow the mixture to cool for another minute or so. Add the egg yolks, followed by the butter.

· Pour the mixture into the baked tart shell. Jiggle the crust lightly to even out the filling and leave on counter until mixture is set. This should take around 20 minutes. Alternatively, you can place the tart in the refrigerator for no longer than 20 minutes, then keep it at room temperature after it has set.

· Serve the chocolate tart at room temperature. If you plan to serve it the next day, store it overnight in the refrigerator and remember to let it stand at room temperature for two hours before serving.

.

https://www.thespruceeats.com/chocolate-tart-recipe-1375153

Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventures

The chance to do a commission of ‘Ben’, a beautiful retired racehorse, immediately making me think of the equestrian art of Alfred J Munnings. However, in portrait format, a contemporary composition for the painting rather than the landscape format that characterised his paintings.

Croustade de Canard with blueberries on the menu with eggplant and a herb and Parmesan flat bread starter.

Slow roasted the duck on the Kamado Jan for a 7 hours, which was a few hours too long. Fortunately it wasn’t dried to leather and fell apart which was perfect for the pie filling. Didn’t read the recipe correctly either, so had to cook and add the bacon at the end. The cheese-based flatbread made a great topping for the pie. Logistical juggling to get the chargrilled eggplant ready, made easier by crisping the duck pies in the oven.

The annual Art Society ‘Unblocked’ Exhibition opening. 20cmx20cm wooden blocks on which to create anything that used the Pantone colour of 2019 ‘Coral’. I used my silk scarf for my submission, which was displayed by Ricardo on a stand in the center of one of the galleries. As has become the norm, the curating was professional and the exhibition engaging.

When risotto is good, it’s delicious. A pea and mushroom risotto with lamb the highlight of the Baleia wine pairing evening at the Turbine. Served with their Pinot, it might not have been the best course for a diabetic, but at least it was delicious.

Croustade de Canard

INGREDIENTS

• 1 whole duck, deboned

• 45ml (3 tbsp) olive oil

• 1 red onion, sliced

• 6 strips rindless back bacon, chopped

• 250g portobellini mushrooms, sliced

• 15ml (1 tbsp) fresh thyme, chopped

• 500ml (2 cups) chicken stock

• 60ml (¼ cup) port (optional)

• 410g blueberries

• salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventures

A preliminary painting of a rhino (30cmx30cm) for the larger commission piece I’m hoping to do. Permanent Magenta an odd colour to be using. The ‘extra-spectral’ (meaning it doesn’t exist in the visible spectrum) nature of the colour perhaps making it special in relation to the rhino on the edge of extinction?

Fabulous run along the mist covered beach, with Prince, from Brenton. Running on a silver mirror. My Achilles not happy with the run. Barefoot running?

Gurgling water running down gutters. Cars splashing along wet streets. Gentle rain, creating a magical world. For which. Good wine, friendships and laughter were created. Not forgetting, the vibrancy of a Border Collie!

The display book collection of my paintings from Vietnam finally sorted, and the draft of the Vietnamese diabetic sensitive recipe book compiled. Not sure the small format is the answer?

I seemed to ‘crash’ my way through the day. While coordination isn’t one of my skills, the effects of low blood sugars having an impact after a good cycle up Homtini Pass.

Exceptionally dusty with a bunch of motorcycles ensuring I rode in a cloud of the stuff. Fortunately Pete was having his bicycle washed so I did mine as well. I probably would have benefited from a similar hose down!

‘Johannes’ heading to his new home in Europe

Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventures

‘Princesses for a Day’, my painting of Lauren and Livy. Purple of royalty amongst the rich colours of the background, while butterflies lead them through the magical garden of their imagination. ‘The butterfly children play, dance and sing all day long with their little brothers and sisters’.

Master Chef final dinner at J9. Clare did a clever plate of tapas to start the evening. ‘Penguins’ from olives and feta, with salmon rolls and white anchovies. A beautiful presentation of tuna done two ways that tasted fabulous. A main dish of lamb with a clear sauce that was sent from the gods.

Dessert, the diabetic kind, our challenge. Crepes, with blueberries cooked in thyme with cream and lemon zest. definitely moreish.

Thunder storms, not Prince’s best. The rain welcome even if it did mean a bunch of running rather than being out on my bicycle. And that without my Achilles screaming at me! Fortunate to manage the ride through Homtini between the weather days.

Keto Crepes

Prep Time

10 mins

Cook Time

30 mins

Total Time

40 mins

 

Completely sugar-free and low carb, My Keto Crepes are rich and sweet with the added value of healthy fats and the best coconutty aroma!

Course: Breakfast

Cuisine: French

Calories: 197 kcal

Author: Olivia Crouppen

Ingredients

• 1/2 cup (2oz/57g) coconut flour

• 1/4 cup (2oz/57g) Lakanto sugar substitute, or Swerve sugar substitute

• 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

• 1/2 teaspoon salt

• 6 eggs

• 1/4 cup (2floz/57ml) coconut oil, or butter, melted

• 3/4 cup (6floz/170ml) coconut milk, or another non-dairy milk

• 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, optional

Instructions

1. In a large bowl combine the coconut flour, Lakanto sugar substitute, baking powder, and salt.

2. In a separate bowl combine the eggs, oil, and coconut milk. Then, add the wet ingredients into the dry and whisk until a smooth batter is formed. Allow the batter to rest at room temperature for 10 minutes, this will allow the coconut flour to fully absorb all the liquid. 

3. After 10 minutes, heat a medium nonstick skillet over medium heat. I allow my pan to separate dry for about 4 minutes.

4. Once the pan is hot, grease with a little bit of butter or coconut oil, then using a 1/3 cup measure, spoon the batter into the pan, gently swirling the medium in a circular motion until batter is evenly distributed across the pan. 

5. Allow the crepe to cook for about 3-4 minutes on the first side. When the medium is ready to flip there will be tiny bubbles all over and the edges of the crepe will be golden brown.

6. Using a large flat spatula, gently loosen the crepe from the pan then flip over. These crepes are actually more flexible than traditional ingredients so don’t worry about them breaking when flipping or folding over.

7. Allow the crepe to cook on the second side for about 1-2 minutes. Remove from the pan and place on a large plate. Repeat the process until you’ve used all the batter. 

8. To serve, fold 2-3 crepes into triangles and top with Lakanto Maple Flavored Syrup and fresh berries if desired. Enjoy!

9. Cover and store the crepes in the fridge for up to 2 days. They re-heat nicely in a pan over low heat or in the microwave.

Nutrition Facts

Easy Keto Crepes

Amount Per Serving (2 crepes)

Calories 197

Calories from Fat 144

% Daily Value*

Total Fat 16g

25%

Saturated Fat 11g

55%

Polyunsaturated Fat 2g

Monounsaturated Fat 2g

Cholesterol 186mg

62%

Sodium 113mg

5%

Potassium 69mg

2%

Total Carbohydrates 6g

2%

Dietary Fiber 3g

12%

Protein 8g

16%

Vitamin A

7%

Calcium

9%

Iron

12%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

https://www.biggerbolderbaking.com/keto-crepes-easy/

Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventures

In the studio, a mush of paintings. A small painting of the yacht opposite the studio, while the underpainting for the painting ‘Princesses for a Day’ dries and the wooden block gets its gesso primer.

Sugar levels too high. The Achilles reappearance cause? Wine season? Summer dehydration? The riding and running seeming to keep them from blowing into the stratosphere. Summer temperatures keeping the chilled fingers and frozen toes manageable. The higher levels also reducing the persistent headaches. However, the trend a concern. Eliminating the after insulin berries and yogurt and increasing the amount of water I drink during the day to see the impact on fasting blood sugars.

Despite the wind, a fabulous ride through the farmlands above Phantom Pass. The wind bringing a cooling, salt laden, boost of marvellousness.

Cola beach, Sedgefield with its weathered sandstone cliffs. Endless miles of blue seas, skies and soft sand. A play ground for dogs designed in heaven. An instant holiday vibe at Pilipili for breakfast, where it doesn’t matter that the coffee isn’t the best in the world, or that the service was a tad slow. Even the specks of sea-sand on the plate felt acceptable. Great service and we left with a smile.

Wind howling. Grated Parmesan spread across the four corners of the earth, as I tried to put the toppings onto the mozzarella focaccia on the Kamado Jan.

Border Collie with an upset stomach, in an apartment, not the easiest to manage.

Diary of an Adventure

Harbour Town Adventures

Memories

Acrylic on canvas 102cmx76cm

Fantasmegorical lunch on Christmas day. Nine courses of culinary delight. Blood sugars controlled, thanks to the careful menu preparation by the Chef’s. Glad I didn’t have to drive!

Menu

Spring onion wrapped in bacon with cumin and paprika. Cooked with lemon.

Prawns with chilly.

Maron freshwater crayfish Vietnamese salad

Kingklip Crevice with kiwi fruit, red onion

Cape whiting (fish) with an olive, anchovies, chili, tomato and wine broth on a bed of zucchini spiral

Litchi and burnt pineapple sorbet

Fillet, zucchini with a vodka blue cheese dressing

Side of salmon

Bûche de Noël.

Raspberry bushes are flowering along the Highway West road. Pink dog roses and blue plumbago. Agapanthus in full bloom. Fields startlingly green. Summer after the rains in the Garden Route.

Inspiration for my painting ‘Memories’, a commission of a family home. A gentle touch for the painting that was as much about the ‘theater’ of painting with my fingers for the sudden surge in people through the studio. A day of pouring rain doing its bit to keep people away from the beaches.

Crusted beef fillet with foie gras the Family Day menu. The fillet slow cooked for an hour on the Kamado Jan before leaving to cool. A crust made from mozzarella and al one flour rather than the traditional pastry version. I didn’t get the heat up enough to crisp the crust, which meant the meat sat on the fire for toooooo long. Fortunately, it didn’t end up dried leather. A starter of spring onion wrapped in bacon , stolen from the Christmas Day menu, as a starter. Quite scrumptious.

Crusted beef fillet with foie gras and truffles

Pour For 8 personsCuisson : 40mnPréparation : 40 mn

• 1 kg of beef fillet (dressed, not barded)

• 600g of puff pastry

• 125g of foie gras

• 2/3 little truffles

• Périgueux sauce

• 1 egg yolk

• 2 dessert spoons of oil and 30g of butter

Preparation:

Cooking of the fillet (the day before): brown the piece of meat on every side in the mix oil/butter. When it is brown, season it with salt and pepper. Let it stand until the next day, the roast beef must be wrap in the puff pastry only when it is cold.  

Roll the pastry out to wrap the roast beef (make sure that the pastry is thick enough). Smear the inside with the egg yolk. Slice the truffles thin and place the slices in a line in the middle of the pastry. On the truffles, spread the sliced Godard foie gras. Put the beef fillet upside down on the mix. First, close one side and smear it with egg yolk. Then, close the other side which must wrap the first side. Cut at the extremities the rest of pastry to obtain a flap on each side. Fold up the flaps on the fillet. Smear with egg yolk before refolding to knit well the pastry. Smear all with egg yolk to brown. Decorate according to imagination.  

Place the fillet in a cool place, covered with a tea towel and let it stand for one hour.  

Cooking:

Cook in a preheated oven at 200°C for 15minutes to 25 minutes depending on thickness.

Let it stand for 20 minutes in the oven at 50°C.  

Serve in a long plate previously warmed with a Périgueux Godard Sauce.  

Sauce Périgueux

This rich, classic sauce is flavored with Madeira and pungent, earthy black truffles, which are a specialty of Périgueux, a city in the Perigord region of southwestern France. Julia Child recommended Sauce Périgueux for “filet of beef, fresh foie gras, veal, egg dishes, and timbales,” all delicous ways to enjoy the luxury of truffles

Ingredients

Makes

About 1 cup

• 1 1/2 ounces Demi-Glace Gold® (or Demi-Glace de Veau Gold®) dissolved in 3/4 cup hot water

• 2 canned truffles, minced

• 1 tablespoon truffle brining liquid

• 1 tablespoon Madeira

• 1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter

• Salt and ground black pepper

Methods/steps

1. Bring the reconstituted Demi-Glace Gold® to a simmer over low heat in a small saucepan.  Add the truffles, brining liquid, and Madeira and simmer for 1-2 minutes.

2. Whisk in the butter and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Additional Tips

Black truffles preserved in brine and packaged in cans or jars can be found at many gourmet and specialty food markets.

https://www.foie-gras-godard.eu/A-7446-crusted-beef-fillet-with-foie-gras-and-truffles.aspx

https://www.morethangourmet.com/recipe-sauce-p%C3%A9rigueux

spring onion and pancetta wraps

by Janet Davies @pigeoncottage

Rick Stein made a lovely TV programme this year called ‘Long Weekends’. In one episode he visited Palermo and their famous street food market where he came across these little beauties: spring onions rolled in thin slices of pancetta or very thin slices of streaky bacon and roasted on a hot BBQ until the pancetta is crisp and the onion soft underneath. We now make about three each of these as a BBQ starter and they go down a real treat. Enjoy!

To make…

• Buy as many bunches of spring onions as will give you 3 per diner and a couple of packs of good quality pancetta (I use Sainsbury’s ‘Taste the difference’ or Waitrose own brand), you’ll need one slice per onion. If you use streaky bacon it must be very thinly sliced or it won’t adhere to the onion and it will unravel during the cooking process.

• Prep the onions by trimming both ends and ensure they are clean and dry.

• Brush the whole onion lightly with a little olive oil and then wind a piece of pancetta or bacon around each one.

• Using tongs, add the onions onto a very hot BBQ and cook them on each side until they look crisp and golden – it will only take a few minutes. Longer than it will take to eat them anyway!

https://pigeoncottage.com/2017/07/21/bbq-spring-onion-and-pancet

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.