After much provocative dancing with my newly found South African friends to the beat of Shakirah’s ” hips don’t lie”, we sat down to dinner….
“Como se llama, bonita, mi casa, su casa
N a z a r i n a , N a z a r i n a ( just kidding I meant to say Shakira, Shakira)
Senorita, feel the conga, let me see you move like you come from Colombia.
…OMG, I still have this song ringing in my ear! Read below how I met these crazy people!
Paying homage to some autumnal classics
Bubbly, virgin pear & ginger beer crushed ice cubes & sparkling water with a cinnamon sugar rim libation. Sparkling water “perks” up any drink, it is like a good fitting brazier.……you know where I am going with this!!!
And……”Pampoen bredie”( pumpkin stew with beef), mango pickle, ( you gotta have sour with the sweet & a little spicy), wild rice and brown basmati with black mustard seeds and roasted red bell peppers.
“Brown & wild” very much like me LOL! ( Purchased the brown & wild basmati at the farmer’s market)
As a small child growing up in South Africa, I was introduced to this Cape Malay classic known as “pampoen bredie ( pumpkin stew with tender brown beef) by my loving mom. I remembered not liking it very much, simply because I was a kid who disliked vegetables and was a heck of a poor eater as well! Now, I have come to the realization that this very infamous “pampoen bredie” was by no means an impromptu dish prepared by my mom and her sisters, in fact, it was slow cooked with a “lotta” love and made only with the best ingredients. I should have known that mediocrity had no place at their kitchen table even if it was just this humble gourd!….Thank God my taste buds matured!
Last week while doing my weekly shopping at Whole Foods, I ran into four South Africans. I heard them conversing in Afrikaans and well, simply introduced myself. And then all h… broke loose! Our handshakes were by no means flaccid, I can assure you they were firm, rapid and extremely impressive much like a well shaken drink! ( Is this not a common phenomenon when meeting your fellow countrymen? LOL!) I decided then and there to invite them all to dinner that night and being the gracious hostess that I am inquired about any of their preferences , ironically they all answered, “pampoen bredie!” Sweet! I thought, I was going to spoil myself by making this dish anyway!
And so I graciously obliged but with the intention of a little “forward thinking” of the preparation of this dish. So, in order not to dishonor my mom’s version, I would still mirror the premise of this Cape Malay classic but with a tiny little twist. C’mon, we cannot always stay rooted in tradition!
I also concocted this stunning little virgin sipper with the intention of evoking refreshing and delicious drama!
Use some of the pears to garnish the drinks and the remainder ( peeled) blend with the bottled pear juice.
Method for the drink: Chill everything except the pears!
Pour some ginger beer ( Non-alcoholic) in ice cube trays and freeze, when ready to garnish the drinks, crush some in a plastic bag with a rolling pin.
Blend 4 cups of the pear juice, the remainder of the pears( peeled) with 1 and a half cups of ginger beer until fully incorporated and then shake like the dickens. Mix some organic sugar with cinnamon for the rim( first rim the glass with a lemon wedge) and then dip into the cinnamon sugar. Fill glasses halfway with the pear mixture and top off with a scoop of ginger beer ice cubes and then fill to the top with sparkling water.
You are going to become addicted to this gingery non–alcoholic libation!
“Pampoen bredie” ( Pumpkin stew with grass-fed organic stewing beef)
Please use organic ingredients when possible!
The method is similar to this post that I wrote in January “Grass-fed organic beef cooked low and slow with fru-fru potatoes”
Follow the ingredient list and method of that post but do not add potatoes and the balsamic vinegar. Add a quarter teaspoon of black or pale yellow mustard seeds to the onions and then caramelize. Next, peel and cube two small white pumpkins. Lay the first cubed pumpkin ( this is my little twist) on a baking tray and sprinkle with kosher salt, some brown sugar, cinnamon, pure pickle masala( just a tiny sprinkling), some nutmeg and some extra virgin olive oil and roast for an hour. This should be tender but not mushy!!!
Add the second cubed pumpkin to the beef when it is tender and dark brown and delicious and cook for an hour until the pumpkin cubes have melted in the meat gravy. Adjust your seasoning and add a little brown sugar, two dried red chilies, two stick cinnamon to the mixture as well. Just before serving add the roasted pumpkin cubes to this pot and simmer for ten minutes. Serve in little pumpkins, rice on the bottom then the pumpkin stew. Also serve mango pickles with this dish.
My fellow South Africans had so much fun and simply loved the meal I prepared in such a short time. They could not get over the fact that I served it in individual little pumpkins. They are now going to inform their family and friends about coming to this blog for my version. They are also coming back next week for another dinner and hopefully dessert! Maybe they will allow me to post our dance video….let me see whether I could convince them!
Julle mal Suid Afrikaners is lekker b…Ek moet se daar is niemand wat soos ons kan dans en n’ gekke spektakel van ons self te maak nie!!!!!
I hope you enjoyed this post.
Thanks for stopping by,