120426 main ingredient’s menu taste of cape town, howard booysen wines, nobu’s bento boxes, crispy, chilli tempura squid, products, our market activities, wine courses, events and restaurants
1 MENU Main Ingredient’s weekly E-Journal Gourmet Foods, Ingredients & Fine Wines Eat In Guide’s Outstanding Outlet Award Winner from 2006 to 2010 www.mainingredient.biz - http://www.adamastorbacchus.com/ Click here to Subscribe to MENU or to contact us Click on underlined and Bold words to open links to pictures, blogs, websites or more information A country road in the Hemel en Aarde ValleyIn this week’s MENU: • Products • Our market activities • Taste of Cape Town • Howard Booysen wines • Nobu’s Bento boxes • Crispy, chilli tempura squid • Wine courses, Events and RestaurantsProducts We have found some powdered agar agar, more of the valuable and oh-so-rare Argan oil, a whole new selection of patés from France and we have replenished ourstock of truffle products like salt and oils. We also have new stock of the Mexicorn salsasand chipotles. For those and any other products you need, you can access our productlist and see pictures in our website. If you can’t find what you need, let us know and wewill try to find it for you. Until our online shop is ready, drop us an email and we willhelp you. We are very happy to see that traffic on our website is increasing and moreorders are coming from it.
We have a lot of fun putting MENU together each week and, of course, doing the thingswe write about, but making it possible for you to enjoy rare and wonderful gourmetfoods is what drives our business. We stock a good range of ingredients and deliciousready-made gourmet foods. You can contact us by email or phone, or through ourwebsite. We can send your requirements to you anywhere in South Africa.Our market activities We will be at Long Beach Mall tomorrow, Freedom Daypublic holiday, Friday 27th April from 09h00 to 16h00, for our South Peninsula friends,and we will be back at at the Old Biscuit Mill’s brilliant, exciting and atmosphericNeighbourgoods Market, as always, this Saturday and every Saturday between 09h00and 14h00.Public holidays, we think, are there for people in corporate jobs. They tend to beirrelevant to people like us who have their own businesses and, most especially, to allthe people who look after your requirements in the hospitality and retail industries andto people who work in service industries like nursing, the police, firemen etc. So, to allof you who will have a day off, we hope you will have a most enjoyable long weekend,Tuesday, May 1st, also being a holiday. Of course, if you receive this at your workaddress, you may not see it until Wednesday…..A reminder that this weekend there is the Cheese Festival and next weekend theRiebeeck Olive Festival. Mother’s Day will be on Sunday 13th of May this year. The Squarerestaurant at the Vineyard Hotel is doing an absolutely scrumptious sounding 3 courselunch on Mother’s Day for R255 a person. And there is a surprise goodie bag for Mum.Book soon. Check out these and other great events in our events list.Taste of Cape Town The 5th Taste of Cape Town took place last weekend fromThursday to Sunday and we did what we normally do and went to this great show on thefirst night and on the last afternoon. We could list the food ad infinitum (see the photoson our blog) but the show is over and so we just want to say how much good food weate. We do recommend that, if you had dishes you loved, do now go to the restaurantsand have the larger portions there. We hear that restaurateurs don’t do the show tomake money but as a very good marketing exercise because people do visit restaurantsthey have not experienced before after enjoying their food at Taste. We wereconcerned when we saw that several restaurants we saw at earlier Tastes were notattending, but there was a very good range of top places there this year, so there wereno gaps.Someone on Facebook did ask why, if there are all those great food opportunities, werethe rib and chicken stands so busy? Our take on this is that if they were busy, they musthave been serving what people want to eat, but we didn’t even see them. We were notcharged to taste wine this year, as we have been in previous years and if you paid for aglass of wine, they did give very generous measures. And although there were manyalcohol outlets, we personally did not see any drunkenness. Green Point Cricket Club is agreat venue for this show, there is plenty of parking and it is on the flat.The Pop Up Chefs were a great attraction. These busy chefs could not commit to thewhole show so four each took the stand for a day. We talked to Richard Carstens fromTokara on Thursday and tasted his beautiful Togarashi beef ‘sashimi’ tartar and HenryVigar from our great local Sea Point restaurant La Mouette and tried his butternut andsage ravioli with brown butter. Then there were the cook-offs in the Pick n Pay theatrewhere two competing chefs were given a mystery basket to cook a dish, or two, in 20minutes. We watched Brad Ball from Bistro 1682 at Steenberg cook against BertusBasson (the winner) from Overture. They each cooked two different salmon dishes, andan aubergine dish and it was a very fast and furious but close finish and great fun towatch.A huge negative was complaints that there simply were not enough toilets and the poorkitchen staff and chefs were reduced, like the rest of us, to stand in very long queuesrather than be on their stands. We hope they sort this out next year.
3Bento Boxes at Nobu What is a Bento box? It is a beautiful Japanese lacquered box,traditionally packed with food delights for a single person to be taken to work or school.Now you too can try one at Nobu, who have two on offer for lunch and dinner for thewinter season. Ushered into the restaurant by the traditional shout “Ira-shai-ma-se”,“Welcome to our home” in Japanese, our delightful Kenyan waitress Mercy showed us toour table. Then came Keith, the sommelier, who we had met last week at Tracy VanMaaren’s trade tasting. Much study of the wine list had left us feeling rather winded asthe prices are certainly some of the highest we have seen in the Cape. He persuaded usto have a bottle of Kleine Zalze Chenin Blanc, which he said would be (and it was) a verygood match with our Bento boxes. Pictures here.There is a lovely surprise when they arrive. The two long black lacquered boxes aredouble storeyed! So each Bento box gives you at least 7 different dishes and in the twoboxes they do not duplicate any dish. We suggest you go and order one of each Bentobox for two people and share as we did. The standard Bento box costs R275 and theDeluxe is R375. Both include dessert.What is in the boxes? Salmon Sashimi salad with jalapeno sauce in one box and SearedTuna salad with a mustard dressing in the other. Wonderfully fresh and crisp sautéedbaby vegetables with a good dose of chilli. Two different fish Sushi rolls, prawn and tunanigiri and sashimi fish plus our Nobu favourite, the tempura rock shrimp, which comeswith its own dedicated Ponzu dipping sauce. You also get Nobu’s iconic jalapeño dip togo with the tempura white fish in the other box. Beef wing rib anti cucho, off the bone,is sliced and covered in a sauce which tasted of chilli, cumin and tomato; rolled whitefish sashimi in a deliciously fragrant citrus and lemongrass sauce and another in theother box that tasted like thinly sliced scallop. The soft roasted aubergine, Nasu, in misodusted with sesame was also very good. The teriyaki chicken was slightly dry. The rice inthe sushi has absolutely perfect pearls of separate rice grains that stick together but arenot at all mushy – made by experts.There are two desserts to choose from. In another smaller bento box there is a warmsquidgy and oozy rich chocolate fondant with a green tea ice cream which we(unwillingly!) shared. Or you can have the Suntory whisky cappuccino dessert, served ina cappuccino cup. You are instructed to be sure to scoop down to the bottom to get allthe layers of coffee-flavoured Crème brûlée, whipped cream, whiskey and bits ofroasted coffee beans, which we found rather too crunchy. Other than good black coffee,Lynne is not a fan of anything coffee flavoured, but that doesn’t mean this wasn’t a verygood dessert indeed.There is more than enough food for two, so it is good if you are feeling greedy. One ofthe highlights of the One and Only is they have free valet parking and there is the lovelylounge and cocktail bar where you can pop in for a drink or coffee to meet friendsbefore you eat.Howard Booysen wine tasting We received an invitation to attend this tasting(see pictures), held at Van Hunks Restaurant in upper Kloof Street. Howard is thesommelier at Aubergine restaurant, but has made his own range of wines from bought ingrapes for the last couple of years. On Tuesday, we were able to taste his lower pricedrange called Pegasus. His 2011 Riesling has lots of charm and is easy drinking withresidual sugar of 5gm and 6% acidity with 13% alcohol, with the grapes sourced fromStellenbosch. There is a juicy and soft Cinsault, the rarely used southern Rhône grape,most often used here in blends. These grapes also come from Stellenbosch.We then tasted his excellent 2010 Kabinette style Riesling with residual sugar at 21gmand good clean acids at 7% and only 12.5% alcohol, quite a feat in this country. This winewhich is very Rhine in style was awarded 4.5 stars in Platter and it is well deserved.Howard has just released the 2011 which has an even better sugar to acid balance and iscompletely delicious. There are turpene hints on these wines but they are only hints;they are refreshing and deep with honey notes under great fruit and crisp acidity and
they drink perfectly with food. Howard had laid on some snacks and these wines allhighlighted the best in them. He is definitely someone to watch as we expect even moregreat things from this young man.This week’s recipe is our recreation of one of the most popular dishes at the Taste ofCape Town on the Taj Hotel’s stand.Crispy Chilli Squid Tempura 500g small squid rings and tentacles (Cut up larger rings into bite sized pieces) – 500 ml milk – 1 egg – 210 ml ice cold sparkling or soda water – 1/2 t salt – 25g corn flour – 75g flour – 4 ice cubes – 2t chilli flakes or 1 to 2 (depending on your taste)finely chopped fresh red chillies, seeds removed – approx 500 ml canola oil for frying – good sushi mayonnaise or Hellman’s diluted with a little milk to make it more runny.Soak the squid in milk for at least an hour (this tenderises it), then drain and pat reallydry. Heat the oil in a wok or a wide deep pan to 370 °C. Do not leave the oil alone. Mixthe water with the egg and then stir in the flour, salt and chilli flakes and ice cubes.Quickly mix up the batter, it does not have to be smooth. Immediately toss the squidinto the batter a spoonful at a time to coat well and then deep fry for just a couple ofminutes until it is really crisp and beginning to turn golden. Drain on kitchen paper andkeep warm in the oven while you cook the rest. Then serve with the mayonnaise drizzledover it. You can also drizzle over a sweet chilli sauce.Food and wine (and a few other) events for you to enjoyThere is a huge and rapidly growing variety of interesting things to occupy yourleisure time here in the Western Cape. There are so many interesting things to do inour world of food and wine that we have made separate list for each month for whichwe have information. To help you choose an event to visit, click on our list. All theevents are listed in date order and we already have exciting events to entertain youright through the year. Click here to access the list. You will need to be connected tothe internet.We have had a lot of enquiries from people who want to learn more about wine.Cathy Marston and The Cape Wine Academy both run courses, some very serious andothers more geared to fun. You can see details here.Some restaurants have responded to our request for an update of their special offers andwe have, therefore, updated our list of restaurant special offers. Click here to accessit. These Specials have been sent to us by the restaurants or their PR agencies. We havenot personally tried all of them and their listing here should not always be taken as arecommendation from ourselves. If they don’t update us, we can’t be responsible forany inaccuracies in the list. When we have tried it, we’ve put in our observations. Wehave cut out the flowery adjectives etc. that so many have sent, to give you theessentials. Click on the name to access the relevant website. All communication shouldbe with the individual restaurants.Summer time is picnic time and several wine farms offer picnic facilities. We haveput together a list of wine farms who can provide you with a picnic, We haven’t put inmuch detail, just where it is, phone number, email address and a link to the website.The latter is where you will find all the important information. Go and check it out.26th April 2012Remember - if you can’t find something, we’ll do our best to get it for you, and, ifyou’re in Cape Town or elsewhere in the country, we can send it to you! Check ourproduct list for details and prices.