It is time to embrace everything local. From eating to travelling. I want to encourage everyone to look at places closer to home for their annual getaway. Not only will it be a lot more economical (basically you can go with friends, and you can go way more often), but you will be supporting local guesthouses, b&b’s and farms through the slow winter months. Here’s the first place I would go – with more to follow soon!
Paternoster and Tietiesbaai
Only and hour and a half from Cape Town and you are in this white-washed fishing village. Its packed full of the best places to eat and on some great unspoilt beaches. If there is only one place you eat at make it lunch at Oep ve Koep Bistro. Chef Kobus van der Merwe is a genius, and he needs an entire post dedicated to his art, so I won’t get into it now. But think foraged sea food. No, not seafood. Go with a good appetite and an open mind. He will change the way you think about the ocean.
This is Cape Town’s offering of ‘glamping’. The Beach Camp in Titiesbaai nature reserve is a secluded little tented camp, close enough to Paternoster for those wanting to dine out on fine seafood cuisine, but also just far enough removed from it all to crack open a good bottle of wine, get the cards out and rustle up some braaibroodjies on the communal open fire pit, under the stars. Their website is really helpful with essentials to bring. But here is what to cook!
– Get some delicious farm style bread and spread one side with farm butter and sprinkle with a bit of salt.
– For a traditional braaibroodjie; spread the other side with some good chutney, a couple slices of extra matured cheddar and some sliced onion.
– Alternatively add camembert, dried cranberries, thinly sliced garlic and flaked almonds. Or; wholegrain mustard, thick cut white cheddar and a drizzle of balsamic glaze.
– Butter the outsides of the sandwich lightly.
– Place all sandwiches in a braai grid to hold them together, and to make turning them easier.
– Grill over the coals for 5-7min on each side, making sure they are properly toasted.
Coal Roasted Stuffed Butternut
– Cut open the butternut and scoop out the seeds.
– Spoon out some chèvre into a bowl and mix with fresh picked coriander, dill, mint and black sesame seeds.
– Fill the seed hole with the herbed goat cheese.
– Season, drizzle with olive or sesame oil and then cover each half with foil, leaving no part of the butternut exposed.
– Once you start braaing stick the butternut straight into the coals, making sure that they are getting heat from every direction, except on top.
– They will take about 20min – 35min depending on the size of the butternut and heat of the coals.
– Don’t be afraid of some charring, the skin of the butternut is a though little guy and will keep the flesh from burning as long as you don’t put coals on top of the cut side of the veg.
– You can always take the butternut out the coals and check on it if you aren’t sure that it is cooked completely and stick it back in there if it needs a little longer.
– Serve straight out the coals.
(The awesome photos above were taken by the multi-talented Alice Toich)