Buttermilk Rusks

I grew up in a house where coffee and rusks were part of our morning routine and it still is a tradition in many South African homes. Just think of the ‘boer-beskuit, anys beskuit’ and everyone’s all-time favorite, ‘karringmelk beskuit’ – it brings back wonderful memories of days spent with my ouma baking rusks in her coal stove.  

Store bought rusks have never been a favorite with me and for years I baked my own.  But then work, studies and school got in the way and our neighbor, Janet, who baked rusks every week for a home industry, became our supplier.

Buttermilk Rusks

After their move to Cape Town, I once again started baking my own. I have forgotten how rewarding it is to see my family enjoying my baking.

Here is the recipe for our family favorite. For a healthier option, I nowadays use bran rich self-raising flour for the buttermilk rusks. The result is just as good but somehow I do not feel as guilty when I indulge in a cuppa with a rusk, cuddled up in a chair with a good book.

Buttermilk Rusks


  • 1kg Self-Raising Flour (or Bran Rich Self-Raising Flour)
  • 5ml salt
  • 200ml sugar
  • 250g butter
  • 500g Cultured Buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 25ml oil
Ready for the oven


Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease a roasting pan or two bread pans.

Sieve dry ingredients together and rub butter in well. (I use the hook on my Kenwood Chef).

Beat egg and oil together, and then add in buttermilk and mix. Pour onto dry ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Form buns and place them close together in the pan.

Bake for 45 minutes. Remove from oven and immediately break into sections.

Place onto a rack, well-spaced apart, and leave to dry out in a warming oven overnight or leave at 110°C for 3 ½ hours. Leave to cool.


Coffee and Rusks

Cheese Bread

When embarking on an LCHF eating plan, the most difficult pleasure to give up is bread. I have searched high and low, tried various recipes and this is one of the best … enjoyed by both LCHF followers as well as the lucky ones that do not need to follow an eating plan.

As almond flour is quite costly, I have started to substitute it with macadamia nut flour. The taste is just as good but it is easier on the pocket.

Cheese Bread


  • 1 block Philadelphia/ Lancewood full-fat cream cheese at room temperature
  • 6 large eggs at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoon cider vinegar
  • 4 cups almond flour or macadamia nut flour
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons mustard powder
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 cups cheddar cheese
  • ½ cup chopped chives or spring onions (optional)


  • Mix cream cheese, eggs and cider vinegar in a food processor.
  • Add the flour, baking powder, salt, mustard powder and cayenne pepper. Blitz for a few seconds.
  • Add the cheddar cheese and chives/onions and fold in. Do not blitz in the food processor again as the cheese will become too mushy.
  • Pour into a well-greased bread tin.
  • Bake for 45 minutes at 190°
  • Let the bread cool off in the tin before turning it out.
  • I slice the bread and freeze two slices per Ziploc bags.

Creamy Biltong Soup


Two of my favourite ingredients, biltong and blue cheese, make this a ‘must have’ comfort dish for winter.


  • 200g butter
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 250ml flour
  • 5ml ground cumin
  • 150g biltong powder
  • 2 Knorr Vegetable Stock Pot or 3 Ina Paarman Concentrated Vegetable Stock Sticks
  • 1L boiling water
  • 500ml milk
  • 380g (1 can) Nestlé Ideal Unsweetened Evaporated Milk
  • 5ml fresh nutmeg
  • 200g mature Cheddar, grated
  • 50ml sherry
  • 50g blue cheese, crumbled
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • extra biltong slices, to serve


  1. Dissolve stock in 250ml of the boiling water.
  2. Melt butter in a large pot and add onion. Fry until soft and translucent, then add the cumin and biltong powder.
  3. Add flour to the onion mixture and lower the heat.
  4. Slowly add the stock, stirring continuously and adding the rest of the boiling water while stirring.
  5. Add milk in small quantities until it is well incorporated and creamy. Grate nutmeg into the soup and add the evaporated milk.
  6. Turn off the stove and add the cheese, stirring to melt. Once you have added the cheese, don’t boil the soup again, as it will split.
  7. Add sherry and mix well before adding the crumbled blue cheese, leaving some for serving.
  8. Season to taste.
  9. Puree soup using a stick or jug blender.
  10. Serve with sliced biltong and crumbled blue cheese.

Carrot, Orange and Ginger Soup

I read menus the same way as I read recipe books … like a novel.

When we recently popped into Mugg and Bean for coffee, I noticed that they have a Carrot and Ginger soup on their menu. The ingredients ticked all my ‘to have’ boxes and I decided to try and construct my own version of this soup.

During the R&D process of developing a new recipe, it is sometimes difficult to pen all the ingredients and method down, as a lot of tasting and adjusting takes place. Do your own tweaking of my recipe if you need more or less of a bite.


  • 6 Carrots scraped and cut into rounds
  • ½ Onion, chopped
  • Olive oil
  • 2 Knorr Stock Pots (either chicken or vegetable)
  • 1 litre boiling water
  • 1 t freshly crushed garlic
  • 2 t freshly grated ginger
  • ½ handful fresh coriander, chopped
  • ½ t ground coriander
  • ½ t ground cumin
  • Zest of ½ an orange
  • Juice of the whole orange
  • ½ chilli
  • Salt and Pepper to taste


  • Fry the onion, garlic and ginger in olive oil in a large pot until soft and translucent.
  • Add the chopped coriander, ground coriander, ground cumin, chopped chilli and orange zest.
  • Dissolve the stock pots in the boiling water. Add the water, orange juice and carrots to the pot.
  • Let it simmer until the carrots are soft.
  • Puree soup using a stick or jug blender for a smoother consistency.
  • Season to taste

Best Low-Carb Seed Bread

Low-Carb Seed Bread


One of my greatest foody weaknesses is bread. I absolutely love all types of bread spread generously with butter … I suppose it is part of my comfort food list. So when I was told that I am gluten intolerant and allergic to yeast, I thought that my whole world has come to an end.

After a few panic attacks, I started searching for low-carb bread recipes and this recipe is my favourite at the moment. It is super simple to make, slices easily and freezes really well.



  • 100 ml flax seeds
  • 100 ml sunflower seeds
  • 200 ml macadamia flour
  • 30ml psyllium husk
  • 250ml buttermilk
  • 6 eggs
  • 10ml baking powder
  • 5ml salt
  • Pinch of stevia


  1. Put all the seeds in a coffee grinder and mill until finely ground
  2. Mix the dry ingredients together.
  3. Mix wet ingredients together and combine the wet with the dry.
  4. Pour mixture into a greased and lined loaf tin.
  5. Sprinkle the top with poppy and sesame seeds.
  6. Bake for 50 minutes at 180ºC

Variation: You can use almond flour instead of macadamia flour and use greek yogurt or sour cream instead of the buttermilk.You can add any nuts or seeds and even cranberries. I suggest you experiment till you find your right fit.

Note: It is important to eat ground flax seed as the flax seed hulls are so hard, that they’ll pass right through your body undigested and you then miss out on their rich supply of essential fatty acids. Flax seed is really one of the best sources of omega-3, is high in potassium, is a complete protein and help the body to burn fat as fuel more efficiently.


Ma se Boereboontjies

Ma se Boereboontjies

Wanneer ek min geslaap het of sommer net sielsmoeg is, roep die kospotte my. Dan maak ek trooskos of sommer net onthou kos … kos met geen fieterjassies … kos sonder enige ‘make-up’.

Heel bo aan my lys van gunsteling trooskos staan boereboontjies, blomkool met witsous (nie kaassous nie), soetpampoen en veerligte kapokaartappel.

Ek het die voorreg gehad om my ma gereeld te sien in haar winter jare. Op meer as een geleentheid het ek haar sien sit by die eetkamertafel terwyl sy luister na musiek op haar draagbare radio (waarsonder sy nooit was nie), besig om boontjies metodies te kerf – party vir die pot, ander vir die vrieskas … en dit is nou waarna ek verlang … om net rustig by haar te sit en te gesels terwyl sy kerf. Ek het baie keer gewonder of dit regtig nodig is om die boontjies so presies en fyn te kerf. Dit verander tog nie die smaak van die dis nie. Die antwoord was altyd ja, dit is nodig want dis terapeuties. Dit gee jou tyd om te peins oor dit wat verby is en ted room oor dit wat nog gaan kom.

Ma, ek mis jou vandag!



  • 1 middelslag ui, gekap
  • 500g groenboontjies, gekerf
  • 1 medium grootte aartappel, geskil en in blokkies gesny
  • Sout en wit peper
  • 10ml botter


Voeg ui, boontjies, aartappel, sout en peper in ‘n kastrol met net genoeg water om dit te bedek.

Bring tot kookpunt en prut tot aartappel sag is.

Voeg botter by en breek aartappel met ‘n vurk op tot dit soos kapokaartappels lyk.

Sit warm voor.

Variasie: vervang die groenboontjies met spinasie, kool of wortels.



Broccoli and Cashew Salad

Broccoli Cashew Salad




Summer has arrived and just in time to celebrate Heritage Day which, in recent years, has become more known as South African National Braai Day … although in South Africa, we do not really need a reason to braai … it is our favourite way to spend time with friends and family.



This salad goes exceptionally well with a braai and it is an excellent way to get kids to eat more of their good, green veggies. Continue reading

Chicken Pie

Comforting Chicken Pie …

Chicken Pie

Chicken Pie

In our modern, fast-paced lives we are always looking for a quick recipe, a swift fix to our problems and instant gratification. But some things are just way better when done at a slower pace. The slow-food movement is being revived, and I relish the time, love and affection that goes into preparing food during the pre-microwave era.

This chicken pie recipe should only be attempted if you have some time on your hands. Read a book or magazine while the chicken is bubbling away … you can even go and potter around the garden as this chicken is going nowhere soon.

I prefer to use a whole bird as the different textures of meat add to the overall result of a moist and tender filling.

Continue reading


Melkkos … a traditional South African dish.


Who remembers indulging in a bowl of steaming, fragrant Melkkos on a cold, winter evening curled up on a sofa in front of a crackling fire? Having a warm bowl of this heavenly dish in front of me awakens a sense that if I close my eyes I will feel my Mom hugging me.  This must truly be one of the most nostalgic dishes in my memory bank.

Melkkos, which directly translates to Milk Food, is one of those classic South African dishes that is often passed down from a long line of grandparents and parents. MelksnyselsThere are many variations on this dish with the two popular ones being the recipe that I grew up with (and shared below) and the other one is Melksnysels (Noodles boiled in milk) for which I never acquired a taste.

Melkkos is also very versatile … you can enjoy it for breakfast, serve it as dessert to round off a traditional South African meal or have it as a light Sunday dinner.

Some traditions should never die … this is one of them! Continue reading

Poorman’s Ragu

Poorman’s Ragu

Ragu and Pasta


Comfort food is satisfying because it is prepared in an unpretentious traditional way with a nostalgic appeal that reminds you of home, family or friends. As the seasonal clock turns from summer to autumn, our senses inevitably convey the message that the time for comfort food has arrived.

I happen to stumble across this versatile, rich, beautifully cooked meat-based sauce that is as good served with pasta, over polenta, in wraps, chilli con-carne, as a pie filling and even cottage pie.Ragu and Polenta

The secret of a good ragu is to choose the right cut of meat.  A wrong cut is probably the worst mistake you can make.  Some cuts which are good for braising, like sirloin and prime rib, don’t break down in the same way and you’ll be left with chunks of tight, dry meat rather than meltingly tender beef. It is advisable to use cheaper cuts like shin, chuck or blade. Continue reading