Has September been good to you friends ? I feel like most of the time the months just pass by in a blur. At the beginning of the year after a significant health scare I resolved to slow down, and literally live slowly. I have over the past 5 years focused on living an “examined life” taking the time to pause and reflect. However I realized that even though I was doing this, it was in retrospect, and not necessarily in the moment. More past tense review than present tense presence, if that makes any sense ?
Friday favorites gives me the opportunity to do both, look back on something I did and enjoy again in the present.
Looking through my archives I was surprised to see that I hadn’t shared these fun and flowery images I did last year – so pretty and messy, much like my life … and just the way I like it !
Today is a public holiday in South Africa called Heritage Day, and I love it! I especially love the way businesses and schools have embraced this “new” holiday, encouraging learners and employees to dress in cultural attire and hold functions and events to celebrate the day in whatever way is relevant to them.
The Department of Arts and Culture describes Heritage Day on its website as a day that, ” recognizes and celebrates the cultural wealth of our nation. South Africans celebrate the day by remembering the cultural heritage of the many cultures that make up the population of South Africa.
AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF COMMEMORATING HERITAGE MONTH AND HERITAGE DAY
To celebrate South Africa`s cultural heritage;
To recognise the role of cultural and heritage institutions in the preservation and educating our nation about South Africa’s rich heritage.
To promote access of South Africa’s cultural and heritage institutions.
To create a platform for communities to showcase different aspects of South Africa’s diverse heritage;
To ensure that heritage landscapes of all cultural groups is not suppressed, threatened but celebrated
To continue with a national process of uniting all South Africans as people of one nation irrespective of race, creed, and orientation
To contribute to the education of the South African youth with a special emphasis on arts, culture and heritage learning area;
To help bridge the intergenerational gap in the transmission of indigenous knowledge, skills and techniques “
I”ll never buy a birthday cake, I will always make it ( hahahahah more on my unrealistic expectations in another post )
I’ll never drink green tea…
So far I’m only scoring 1/3
In an effort to live cleaner, and eat cleaner, and reduce my coffee consumption, (not because of the coffee but the milk & diary) I started drinking green tea, albeit with a big spoon of raw honey and even holding my nose in the beginning.
And then, before you could even say Matcha, I was whisking away.
I have unashamably embraced the green stuff !
Before you say ” never” I urge you to give the recipes a try, they are a great introduction to the unique flavour of Matcha, especially the chocolate bark & the cheese cake, which is super easy. All the recipes are at the end of the post.
Special thanks to the awesome Carmen from Nestling Photography for the beautiful images.
Plan on making these ahead of time, as one of the keys elements of the recipe is that the batter rests in the fridge for 2 hours ( even overnight would be ok) These are so moreish, my family loved them !
120g butter, preferably unsalted
1 tablespoon / 15 ml Matcha green tea powder
1 cup/ 120g cake flour, plus an extra tablespoon for dusting
1 teaspoon / 5 ml baking powder
1 tablespoon / 15 ml icing sugar, sifted
2/3 cup / 133g white sugar
Pinch of salt
2 eggs, room temperature
1 tablespoon full cream milk
Melt the butter until just melted, remove from heat and brush the molds, set aside and allow to cool completely. Dust the pans or molds with the tablespoon of flour and shake out the excess
In a large bowl combine all the dry ingredients and whisk together
In another bowl whisk the eggs and milk together until lightly frothy and the eggs are broken up
Using a spatula, gently stir the egg mixture into the dry ingredients until just combined. Slowly add the cooled melted butter, do this in two batches making sure the batter is well blended before adding the second batch. Don’t over mix
Cover and refrigerate for a minimum of 2 hours.
Spoon tablespoons of the batter into the prepared tins and gently smooth the top to fill the mold
Bake at 180oC for 10-12 minutes or until the edges look done and puffed and golden brown, which is difficult to tell with the green tea colour but the should spring back when lightly pressed
Remove from oven, cool on a baking tray for a couple of minutes then turn the tray upside down, give it a little tap and the madeleines should pop out.
Serve dusted with icing sugar.
MATCHA WHITE CHOCOLATE BARK with Genmaicha & dried strawberries
If you are feeling very virtuous you could use raw cocoa butter, if you do you might need to add a little honey to sweeten it. My family has a very sweet tooth, so I’m always looking for fun- semi healthy snacks and treats
200g good quality white chocolate, roughly chopped
2 tsp matcha green tea powder
2 Tbsps. genmaicha
2 tablespoons dried strawberries
1. In a double boiler or a bowl over a saucepan of boiling water, melt the chocolate and stirring gently with a spatula add the teaspoon of matcha powder. Remove from the heat.
2. Pour the chocolate mix onto a lined cookie sheet or a silicone baking mat and use a spatula to spread out. Sprinkle with the genmaicha and the strawberries and place in the freezer to set.
3. Once set, break into bite-sized pieces. Store in the fridge up to two weeks.
…and with good reason too.
Google listed Turmeric as the most searched, researched and trending ingredient in its list of 2016. The rising star of super foods, Turmeric has an impressive resume of health benefits, from powerful anti-oxidant properties to inflammation fighter and an all round super food hero.
Fresh turmeric has gone mainstream and is now widely available at large retailer supermarkets, neatly packaged in a low mess handy little container. However if you’re all about the DIY, look out for the root or bulb at your local veggie store or farmers market. The rhizome looks similar to ginger, and can be peeled and grated in the same way as you would ginger, just remember to wear gloves as it will stain everything orange especially your finger nails.
Recipes in Longevity magazine Feb/March 2017
Concept, styling and recipes: Taryne Jakobi Styling
I blog and write infrequently.
I’m often asked why I don’t post more often, and why I don’t make better use of my blog as a marketing tool.
There are two main reasons for this.
Firstly my website, which was initially designed as a bespoke site, without a good CMS. It was outdated and I did not “enjoy” it anymore. I loved it when it was first installed, but over the years I have not known how to update it and as a result I have neglected a lot of important stuff which would have kept it current. Hopefully I have now ( finally) sorted it out, and moved over to a template theme, which I’m slowly customising as I learn and figure things out.
Secondly, the elephant in the room. Social Media.
I could post weekly, or even daily, detailing every prop I source, recipe I test, shoot I do, editorial I write, client I meet and campaign I style.
I could fill my Instagram feed with billboard pics, recipe book pics and tv commercials.
I could, but I don’t want to.
I’ve been struggling with this for a while now. Frustrated with social media and the constant, ” look at me!” stuff I see posted. I have withdrawn more and more, trying to figure out a balance between doing things to be seen, and being seen doing things. ( I would hope mine was more of the latter)
My friend Tanya Kovarsky wrote an excellent piece on a similar dilemma she has with her own blog, which eloquently expressed how I have been feeling recently.
I love her honesty, “I could write about all that I have. I could write about some of the things I don’t have. But while I’m one for gratitude, I don’t think I need to “brag” about all which I have, nor do I need to make the things I don’t have the “hero” of my story (though I probably will never stop writing about how I don’t have – and want – thinner thighs). Me too Tan ….
I don’t think I will ever have thinner thighs, or the answer to the quagmire of my place in a world of advancing technology. Thank you friends, to those of you who have stuck around whilst I wrestle this through.
So, that all being said, I’m excited to share my new look blog and this beautiful first birthday cake smash shoot I styled recently.
I’ve become a little obsessed with loaded drip cakes and sprinkles, this shoot successfully indulged both, along with all kinds of prettiness, giant gold flamingos, a magnificent chandelier, and the beautiful photography of the Nestling ladies.
Hot Cross Buns
I like my hot cross buns extra spicy and extra fruity, but, my big but, ( not butt ! although after all this Easter baking…) I only like raisins, sultanas, and currants. I don’t like the addition of chocolate chips, cranberries or other dried fruit. *shudders*
This is all very subjective so feel free to play around with the quantities if you do like the addition of these things * shudders again*
This recipe couldn’t be easier, just remember to follow the golden rule when working with yeast (see previous lounge post and explaination )
these were made with the help of little hands, so although the piping of the white crosses was not perfect, it was perfect enough for me 🙂
I hope you will have some fun in the kitchen with this easy and family friendly recipe!
For the buns
4 cups / 655g stone ground cake flour
2 x10 sachet instant dry yeast
¼ cup / 55g light brown caster sugar
2 teaspoons mixed spice
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground cloves
½ teaspoon fine Himalayan salt
2 cups / 330g mixed dried fruit
300 ml full cream milk, warmed
50g butter, melted
2 ex-large Free Range Egg, lightly whisked
¼ cup lukewarm water
Warm apricot jam or marmalade
Sift the flour into a bowl, add the yeast, sugar, spices and salt.
Pour the warm milk, melted butter, and whisked eggs into the mixture and mix on low spread until mixture starts coming together.
Add the dried fruit, and knead for 10 – 12 minutes until the mixture comes away from the sides of the bowl and forms a ball and springs back when you press it with your thumb.
If kneading by hand (kudos) the dough should become elastic and smooth, I can’t say how long this will take as I only ever use a standing mixer (sorry!)
Spray the bowl with cooking spray, return the dough to the bowl, cover and allow to stand in a warm place ( I used my warming drawer because my kitchen is very cold, and I was rather impatient, if you do this make sure the warming oven is only heated and then switched off or it can become too hot and overprove your dough) until doubled in size.
Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease a 20cm x 30cm swiss roll.
Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until it returns to original size. Divide into 12 portions and roll into balls. Place side by side in pan. Set aside in a draught-free place for 30 mins or until doubled in size.
To make flour paste, combine flour, sugar and 1/4 cup (60ml) cold water in a bowl. Spoon into a clear plastic sandwich bag and snip off 1 corner. Pipe crosses onto buns. It is easier to pipe across all the buns as opposed to one at a time.
I let my daughter do this, and although it was messy she loved “contributing”
Bake for approximately 30 mins, until golden.
Meanwhile, to make glaze, warm marmalade or apricot jam, sieve or strain so it is smooth.
Turn buns onto a wire rack. Brush buns with glaze.
Serve with butter.
hmmmmmm a family favourite
Recipe & Styling : Taryne
Photography: Who else could have taken these beautiful images ? BIG thank you to the beautiful ladies at Nestling Photography!