Celebrating 10 years of famous breakfasts, lunches and teas at Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden!

Celebrating 10 years of famous breakfasts, lunches and teas at Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden!
Jenny Morris

Fooding Around with Jenny Morris

For those who enjoy good food and love home cooking ‘The Kirstenbosch Tea Room Cookbook’ is bound to be enjoyed by all. This deliciously functional souvenir of 10 years of the Tea Room and Kirstenbosch proves that at the Kirstenbosch Tea Room Restaurant, there are no secret recipes. Rather, it shares the fun and experience of Pamela Shippel-Granoth’s ten-year Kirstenbosch Tea Room adventure, following 25 years spent over a ‘hot stove’. The recipes in this book have all become firm favourites with both the local and overseas patrons of the restaurant.

The easy-to-follow, step-by-step home cooking recipes include a selection of favourites from the restaurant’s main menu (Hot Kitchen, Cold Kitchen, From the Coals and The Bakery) as well as Pamela’s most sought-after recipes for entertaining friends at home (From My Kitchen).
Pamela’s love of lemony, bitter and spicy Middle Eastern flavours is reflected in the Middle Eastern platter and the ever-popular Shakshuka. To achieve stronger flavours, she uses dry rubs as seasoning for her cooking, recreating the original flavours in a mixture of dry herbs and spices that are finely ground in a spice mill or coffee grinder. These spices are sprinkled on before browning vegetables, meat, chicken, or fish, or used to enhance a sauce.

Many patrons have special food needs, including allergies, and Pamela has developed recipes to cater specifically for these: vegan, vegetarian, sugar-free, dairy-free, wheat-free and gluten-free baking, which has become a real hit.
Pamela graduated from UCT with a Higher Education Diploma in Home Economics. After winning the Argus Cook of the Year competition she was asked to establish the Pick n Pay School of Cooking, which she ran for 12 years.

She has been professionally active in all aspects of the food profession – teaching, catering, TV, radio, and publishing. She also studied and worked in New York and London and ran her own very busy catering business in Israel for 10 years.
In her capacity as owner-chef of The Kirstenbosch Tea Room she has made it a principle to employ staff with little or no cooking experience and limited career prospects. Her purpose was twofold: to empower people with the skills that she was fortunate to have acquired, and by training them to be good at their jobs, to gain maximum mutual benefit for both the staff and the patrons. Pamela spends most of her time in the restaurant kitchen and is constantly engaged in ongoing training.

Pamela’s new book is deliberately simple, yet practical. It is a functional souvenir of both the Tea Room Restaurant and Kirstenbosch Botanical Garden that will sit comfortably on a kitchen counter and fit easily into a suitcase. The book is illustrated with photographs as well as anecdotal comments from regular patrons.
Let’s cook!

Shakshuka
This spicy tomato and egg dish is a favourite in many North African countries.
Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • Tomato sauce
  • 3large onions
  • 60ml olive oil
  • 2 tins chopped Italian tomatoes
  • 3 Tbs tomato paste
  • 1 Tbs cumin
  • 11/2 Tbs fresh sweet paprika
  • 1 Tbs sugar
  • 2tsp salt
  • Chilli to taste
  • 3 cloves garlic

Method:
Dice the onions. In a large shallow pan, fry the onions over a medium heat until glassy. Increase the temperature and allow them to turn golden.
Use any form of red chilli – chopped fresh chilli, chilli sauce or paste of your choice to taste. Make it as fiery as you like!
Make sure the cumin and paprika is pure and very fresh.
Crush the garlic – use fresh garlic not bought chopped garlic.
Add the remaining ingredients and simmer for 5 minutes over a low heat. Check seasoning. Set aside.

Egg

  • 8 eggs
  • Extra olive oil
  • Parsley
  • Fresh crusty white bread.

Method:
When you are ready to eat heat the tomato sauce and crack the eggs into the sauce making a well for them with a spoon.
Cover and simmer gently until the eggs are just cooked. This is best eaten with soft eggs.
Drizzle with olive oil.
Sprinkle on plenty chopped fresh parsley– preferably the flat leafed parsley.
Eat with fresh crusty bread.

Variations:
Add any diced vegetables such as red pepper, mushrooms, baby marrow, eggplant to the onion when frying. Continue as above.

@jennymorrischef