On Sunday we had our annual staff Christmas/New Years party. It was so exciting to have the ENTIRE team there, as this is the first time ever that this happened. Our team has grown over the past year and now includes 4 guides, 4 office staff, a marketing position and a part time bookkeeper and babysitter for prince William J
Hendrik & Chrissy organized an amazing excursion which we all thoroughly enjoyed. It’s no secret, we are all omnivore foodies and also Love us some good wine.
The location could not have been chosen better. We were bookedfor a cooking demonstration at The Chef Tiaan Studio at the stunning Spier Estate between Stellenbosch and Somerset West.
The weather was supreme, the excitement levels high and the smells coming from Chef Tiaan’s kitchen, to die for! Chef Tiaan has a very relaxed manner around the kitchen, making you feel at home and like you’re an old friend visiting at his house. The space is creative and stylish, yet simple and comfortable. There is no doubt that he has serious skills on all fronts!
He started us off with bread, cold meats and cheese while he demonstrated how you create baby spinach snacks with puff pastry blankets. He made the whole process seem fun and like zero effort, while holding conversation and answering questions.
While we were munching away on the spinach pastries and enjoying our bubbly, he was already prepping the dessert; Chocolate Fondant topped with strawberry sorbet and sprinkled with crushed almond brittle – all home made in front of our eyes. The sorbet is left to chill in the mixer while we move on to the veggies for the main course.
Who knew carrots aren’t always orange! Purple, orange and white (rainbow) carrots were lightly boiled before roasting in the oven with some broccoli, covered in honey and herbs. Mmmmmm. Potatoes were salt roasted – fascinating and very fun to do!
*Tips from Tiaan: To test how your meat is faring in the oven, stick a knife in and leave it for a few seconds. Take it out and hold the blade against your lower lip to feel the temperature. If it is still cold, your meat is undercooked. If it is too hot, you’ve overcooked it. Remember that the meat’s temperature rises with 10 degrees when you remove it from the oven and it carries on cooking! The blade should be warm only, then it is ready.
Last but not least was the preparation of the salad. Easy, chunky, no fuss and frills but absolutely gorgeous and delicious!
The highlight of the day was eating this delicious meal. Every single piece of this day was perfect. The food, the presentation thereof, the wine and of course the company!
Thanks to Tiaan for sharing how everyday people like us, can cook like that!