Viva the Hungry Woman!

Jenny Morris

Fooding Around with Jenny Morris

‘Confessions of a Hungry Woman’ began as a monthly column for Woolworths Taste magazine, and gradually grew into what Sam Woulidge describes as a ‘love letter’, to food and foreign places, but ultimately to South Africa. After four years of travelling the world, sampling every delicacy the globe could offer, the tastes of home drew Sam and her husband back to the southern shore of Africa. But returning home meant domesticity and culinary challenges, and, by her own admission, Sam had always been wary of both: “I don’t want to work too hard in the kitchen and I would really rather share a glass of wine with my guests than worry over fussy, higher-grade-science-required recipes.” And so she asked some friends to share their fail-proof recipes with her, recipes with the guarantee that if she could make them, anybody could.
‘Confessions of a Hungry Woman’ is a cookbook of two parts. Firstly, it draws highlights from Sam’s columns previously published in Woolworths Taste, which I just love. (I usually make a bee-line for that and then continue to read the rest of the Magazine.)

Sam takes the reader on a personal journey as she discovers the exotic flavours of foreign places, reminisces about the carefree tastes of childhood and recreates the nostalgic aromas of home. Secondly, it is a celebration of 14 of Sam’s foodie friends. Each was charged with producing a menu for 6 people featuring relatively effortless, but nonetheless impressive, dishes.
Featuring 45 recipes, each one tried and tested by Sam herself, ‘Confessions of a Hungry Woman’ will inspire and delight both the novice cook and the seasoned professional with its beautiful photography and Sam’s honest, witty and sometimes sombre writing.

(Sam is a Cape Town-based journalist. She has edited various magazines, including Cape Review, Cape Etc., Time Out Cape Town and Eat Out. She started writing the ‘Confessions of a Hungry Woman’ column for Woolworths Taste magazine in 2006. She is also a popular food blogger.)
From one hungry woman to another, I just love your work Sam.

Let’s cook!

Nicky’s Rosemary and Lemon Chicken
“I shared this easy recipe with Sam nearly twenty years ago when we both lived in London. I know that she makes it often, and I like that’s she thinks of me when she makes it. Whenever I make this dish for my family I miss Sam and our precious friendship.” – Nicolene Shipton


  • 18 Chicken thighs,bone in with skin
  • 1 cup (250ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 30g fresh rosemary, torn

Place the chicken in an ovenproof dish and pour over the lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper and scatter over the rosemary. Cover the dish with foil and refrigerate for 12 hours. (You don’t need all of this; if in a hurry, a couple of hours will do.)
Preheat the oven to 220 °C and bake the chicken (covered in foil) for about 1 hour.
Then remove the foil and grill until the skin is crispy. Serve with garlicky mashed potatoes and a crisp green salad.
© ‘Confessions of a Hungry Woman’ by Sam Woulidge (Random House Struik)

Cardamom Cake
Karen Dudley’s recipe


  • 220g butter
  • ½ cup honey
  • Zest of 2 lemons
  • 4 eggs separated
  • 220g flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 220g Greek yoghurt
  • 2/3 cup sultanas
  • 1 tbsp. cardamom seeds
  • 3 tbsp. sesame seeds


  • Juice of 2 lemons
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 6tbsp honey

Pre heat oven to 180 °C, line a 22cm diameter cake tin with grease proof paper. Beat the butter, sugar, and honey and lemon zest in a large bowl until creamy.
Beat in egg yolks one at a time. Sift the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt into a separate bowl, and then fold this into the batter alternating with the yoghurt.
Fold in the sultanas and cardamom seeds. Beat the egg whites until stiff peak and then carefully fold into the batter. Pour into the prepared cake pan, sprinkle generously with the sesame seeds and bake for 65minutes.
Allow the cake to rest for ten minutes before removing it from the pan.
To make the syrup, boil the lemon juice, zest and honey in a saucepan for 5 minutes.
You can either pour cooled syrup over a hot cake or hot syrup over a cooled cake. Serve with dollops of Greek yoghurt.

© ‘Confessions of a Hungry Woman’ by Sam Woulidge (Random House Struik)
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