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Cherry on Top

Photos: Anesta van Biljon

This coffee shop and venue is situated in Krugersdorp. The owner, Loukie is a sophisticated, task-precise and heart-warming host. She keeps the green surroundings in a fairytale-like condition and has an eye for detail. The coffee shop’s garden tables are arranged in a manner providing guests with subtle privacy. The food was lovely and Loukie’s soft hand of sophisticating is seen in all the details, from the choice of tea cups to the music.

Gatherings are carefully planned to ensure your full satisfaction regarding the catering and atmosphere. This is where I celebrated my birthday, the pictures will elaborate on this. The reality of me driving by this amazing venue year after year saddens me, although the gatherings to come excite me even more. The cherry on top was the beautifully baked cakes whispering sweet words through class stands. Do yourself the pleasure of planning your next ladies tea or outing with mom here.

Address: 57 Frederick Cooper Drive, Kenmare, Krugersdorp
Hours: Mondays- Closed
Tuesday Friday- 09:00- 16:30
Saturday- 09:00-15:00
Closed on public holidays
Contact: Loukie Nel- 011 955 4863
Website: http://www.cherry-on-top.co.za/

 

Ginger and Fig

Situated in Brooklyn, this intimate coffee shop’s claim to fame is their coffee, burgers and sweet potato chips. There is an informal atmosphere and they make the effort to produce fresh foods with organic ingredients. I had the chocolate brownie and it was wonderful. It was served with a berry compote of some sort and the sweet-sour duo excited the senses. You almost get the idea that everyone around you are regulars…which gives it a coffee-community family feeling. The evident passion for food and people makes it hard not to drive by every day. 

 

Address: 751 Jan Shoba street ( Cnr. of Lynnwood and the old Duncan)

Hours

Sunday-Monday – Closed

Tuesday- Friday- 6am-5:30pm

Saturday- 7am- 3pm

Website: www.gingerandfig.co.za

Ice cubes

Photos : Drikus Roets

I believe pictures will do this blog post justice.

Here are a few ideas on how to utilise ice, not only as a functional drink cooler, but as a party conversation starter.  For ice used directly in a drink, lemon, oranges, mint leaves or berries can be used. These fruits also contribute to the drink’s flavour and I especially enjoyed the berry-Appletiser flavour.

Freeze flowers or glitter in ice cubes to add finesse to the ice bucket.

I conclude that almost anything can be ice cubed if you put your mind to it. A final old trick, freeze grapes and enjoy cold wine without watering down the taste.

 

Chocolate Brownie Recipe

This recipe has been the centre of many desert conversations. I first found this recipe in a People magazine, but have since then tweaked the recipe to perfection. Herewith, I gladly share my trustworthy recipe with you.

Ingredients:
4T Cacao
200g Unsalted butter
200g Castor sugar
200g Cake Flour
1t Baking Powder
3 Large eggs
70g Dark chocolate chopped
60g Chopped nuts (Of your choice)

Ganache:
125ml Cream
100g Dark chocolate
25g Unsalted butter
5ml Vanilla Essence/ 5ml Amarula

Method:
Preheat the oven to 180 ˚C
Line a dish with butter or spray with Cook and Spray and baking paper. It may sound like overkill, but it will make your life easier when removing the brownie from the dish. The dish you choose will determine the thickness of your brownie, other than that it can be any oven fast dish in your kitchen.
Dissolve the cacao in 100ml boiling water and set aside. Mix the eggs, sugar, flour, baking powder and butter well. Now mix in the cacao mixture and thereafter the chopped chocolate. Pour the mixture in the prepared dish with a spatula, to minimise wastage and to maximise your obligation to taste (lick) the batter. Bake for 15-20 minutes. *A brownie is perfect just before completely baked, a few crumbs can still be visible when tested with a sharp knife or testing pin, unlike the texture of a cake. Cut in squares after a decent cooling time. *It works best if the brownies are cut and placed in the same dish it was baked in. The ganache will not drip to waste and will set in a thicker layer of chocolate.

Heat the cream, butter and vanilla essence in a pot and stir in the chocolate pieces. Be careful not to burn the chocolate, keep the stove on a low heat and remove the pot from the stove every now and then, to give the chocolate time to dissolve. Let the ganache cool, this will result in a thicker texture. Pour the ganache over the brownie and sprinkle the nuts on top. The brownie can be served immediately or kept in the fridge for at least four days without declining in flavour or texture. Enjoy!

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