Let’s get cooking! First weekend menu

So what I do for my watching parties is this: I research recipes and try them according to several factors:
1) can I find the necessary ingredients or adequate substitutions?
2) does it sound tasty and appropriate for the time of day?
3) will it be easy to prep and serve between games?  Because my ability to watch and enjoy the games is the number one consideration here, really.

Cooking, reading, drinking…

Some of these are very easy to do, some harder. Four years ago, I had a tough time deciding on a recipe from Paraguay. I wanted to make a traditional Guaraní recipe, but some ingredients were hard to find. This is happening with Australia right now. Last time I got meat pies from Boomerang’s, a local meat pie company that I like very much, but this time I want to cook something.  And although Argentina should be easy, beef with chimichurri is too trite. I did it eight years ago anyway. This time I’m trying something new.

So, here is my menu for the weekend, and a recipe for you to try at home. More recipes in next post!

Friday June 11, Opening Day!
Mexico: chilaquiles verdes, quesadillas de huitlacoche con salsa roja, fresh fruit, tamarind agua fresca, tequila, sangrita, Sierra Madre Regio lager and micheladas
South Africa: Bobotie, fresh fruit, Fairview pinotage, Indaba chenin blanc
France: Eric’s courgettes and brandade, lentil salad, Fischer beer, wine
Uruguay: Pollo a la cerveza (chicken in beer), Quilmes beer (close enough..too bad we don’t get Uruguayan wines here yet)

Saturday June 12
Argentina: Pastafrola (quince pie), mate, wine
Nigeria: Spicy scrambled eggs, South African wine, Zico coconut water
England: Afternoon tea sandwiches, iced roiboos tea
USA: Mary Margaret’s buttermilk biscuits with ham and pimento cheese, Live Oak pale ale
Korean Republic: Stir-fried beef with sesame, steamed rice, South African wine
Greece:  Gharithes Me Feta (Baked Shrimp With Feta Cheese), Greek salad, Greek beer

Sunday June 13
Serbia: cevapcici (grilled ground meat  croquettes) with yogurt sauce, South African wine
Ghana: Avocado stuffed with smoked fish, Zico coconut water
Germany: Abendbrot (German breads, cold cuts, cheeses, pickles), cabbage slaw, potato salad, Hofbrau bier
Australia: BBQ shrimp with mango-lime dipping sauce, macadamia nuts, surprise dish by my Aussie friends, Australian wine, Coopers beer
Algeria: Saffron and raisin couscous with fresh mint (national dish), hibiscus tea
Slovenia: Mushroom goulash, South African wine

This is my adaptation of Rainbow Cuisine’s recipe for Bobotie, a Cape Malay dish that is enjoyed in different versions all over the country and many consider South Africa’s national dish. It is easy to make and can be prepared in advance up to the topping part.

BOBOTIE

Bobotie, a Cape Malay dish found almost everywhere in South Africa. Copyright © South African tourism – Delicious food in South Africa, South African food guide2 lb beef or lamb, minced, or a mixture of the two

Butter, vegetable oil
2 onions, chopped
½ tsp. crushed garlic
1 Tbs. curry powder
1 tsp. turmeric
2 slices bread, crumbled
1/4 cup milk
Finely grated rind and juice of ½ lemon
1 egg
1 tsp salt and ground black pepper
3 oz dried apricots, chopped
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored, and chopped
¼ cup golden raisins
2 oz. slivered almonds, roasted
6 lemon, orange, or bay leaves

Topping
2 egg
1 cup milk
½ tsp. salt

Preheat the oven to 325o F. Butter a large casserole. Separately, heat butter and oil and fry the onion and garlic until translucent. Stir in the curry powder and turmeric, and cook briefly until fragrant. Remove pot from the heat. Mix the meat with the crumbled bread, milk, lemon juice and rind,, egg, salt, pepper, apricots, raisins, apples, and almonds. Pile in the prepared casserole and level the top. Roll up the leaves and bury them in the meat at regular intervals. Seal with foil and bake for 1 ¼ hours.

Increase the oven temperature to 400 o F. Mix together the topping ingredients, pour over the meat and bake uncovered for a further 15 minutes or until cooked and lightly browned.

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