Planning an intimate celebration with your nearest and dearest? Why not hold it at Martha Who Culinary Studio… We will design a bespoke menu for your special occasion and work to a theme of your choosing.
Our venue becomes your venue but all the hard work is left to us, allowing you time to connect with your guests while eating delicious food, receiving great service and avoiding all the ‘not so fun’ tasks that come with hosting a party.
Martha Who? can accommodate up to 20 guests for a seated meal or a few more for a standing buffet type celebration. Perfect venue and experience not only for intimate lunches and dinners but also for Baby Shower’s and other special celebrations.
I love Pasta ! When I moved to London in my early twenties, I had my first taste of basil pesto and fell in love! I would drench it over big bowls of pasta with bacon and mushrooms and I simply could. not. stop. eating. it. Needless to say that when I flew home a year later on holiday, friends and family practically bypassed me at the airport due to not recognising me … or rather, the size of me 😮
I’ve learnt to practice portion control since then and don’t make pasta part of our families weekly menu. I am however, a firm believer in the ‘everything in moderation’ mantra and therefore do not see anything wrong with enjoying a bowl of pasta every now and then! What is life without pasta? This particular pasta is very fresh and certainly a lot healthier than the bottled pesto jars of my youth. The flavours marry together beautifully, so simple but really packs a tasty flavour which makes this pasta dish, restaurant quality! I’ve made it for friends and they have asked for the recipe. Nough said 🙂
Yield: 4 – 5
500g dried penne pasta
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed to a paste
2 – 3 red chillies, deseeded and finely chopped
450ml of white wine (Sauvignon Blanc / Chenin)
450g peeled & de-frosted ready to eat prawns
4 tbs sun-dried tomato puree
Zest and juice of 2 lemons
4 big handfuls of rocket, chopped
Salt & Black Pepper
Follow the cooking instructions for the pasta and while that is on the go, heat a few tablespoons of olive oil in a big frying pan and add the garlic and chilli – cook on a gentle heat ensuring not to burn the garlic. After a minute or 2, add the white wine and the tomato puree and simmer for a few minutes until the alcohol has been cooked away together with the acidity of the tomatoes. Drain your pasta and reserve a little of the cooking liquid. Once the sauce is to your taste, add the prawns and mix through. Remove from the heat. Return the pasta to its pot and add the sauce, stir to combine. Add the lemon juice, the lemon zest and half the rocket and 20 or 30 mL of the reserved cooking water. Taste. Adjust the seasoning with salt & pepper. Heat through on the stove top. Plate and garnish with the remaining rocket.
Cooks Notes: I buy the Woolworths ‘Frozen fully cooked Prawns’ and the Woolworths ‘Sundried Tomato Quarters’. With the tomatoes, I drain the vinaigrette it comes in and blitz the sun-dried tomatoes in a food processor / blender to a lumpy puree type consistency.
Nothing says Christmas in South Africa, quite like Gammon, does it? It’s one of those meals thats reserved solely for Christmas. If I had Gammon at another time during the year, I’d feel as if I was cheating on Christmas … I’m sure some of you know what I mean. So, with it being the Festive Season, I decided to make a little Gammon for Andrew, Hudson, My Mom and I for dinner on the 23rd December … an opening act, to the main Gammon coming on Christmas day, if you will. If we can only indulge in Gammon at Christmas, then lets at least enjoy two 🙂
The result? A resounding YUM!!! Even Hudson enjoyed it and I didn’t think he would eat meat just on its own like that, but he loved it. The best part is it was so easy to prepare, almost had me thinking, I could make this a few times a year… just kidding Christmas!
I used a deboned and non smoked gammon but you could use smoked too – will add to the flavour.
2kg boneless gammon
3 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
2 celery sticks, roughly chopped
1 onion, peeled and roughly chopped
2 Tbsp Black Pepper Corns
Maple, Honey & Mustard Glaze:
80ml maple syrup
80 ml honey
2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
100g demerara sugar
Whole Cloves (A lot)
Place the onion, carrots, celery and gammon in a large pot and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil, turn down the heat and simmer for approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes. Allow gammon to cool slightly before removing from pot and setting aside. If cooking a day in advance, once your gammon and cooking liquid have cooled down, you can return the gammon to the pot with the cooking liquid in it and refrigerate until the next day. Just remember to take your gammon out of the fridge 30 – 45 minutes prior to moving on to the next step.
Preheat your oven to 180 degrees.
Make your glaze by mixing all ingredients together until the sugar dissolves. Remove the rind from your boiled gammon by gently running your fingers between the rind and the fat. You should be able to pull it off in one piece, leaving behind a thin even layer of fat. Score the fat in a criss-cross diamond pattern, taking care not to cut into the meat. Stud the centre of each diamond with a clove. Generously coat the gammon with half the glaze, using a pastry brush to spread evenly. Roast for 15 minutes before removing from the oven and brushing over the remaining glaze. Return to the oven and roast for another 20 – 30 minutes, until the gammon is a rich golden brown colour, taking it out occasionally and basting with the pan juices. Remove from the heat and allow to rest for 15 minutes before serving.
I served mine with Mustard Mash, Honey Glazed Baby Carrots & Asparagus and it paired perfectly! Let’s just say there was no space left for dessert 🙂
I LOVE a good sauce … for me a meal is not a meal without sauce ! My food to sauce ratio is usually half and half (*blush*). This could be why I am constantly fighting the bulge … but its worth the fight because food without sauce would be like a mojito without the mint – a total let down!
In a commercial kitchen, the chef responsible for making all sauces is known as the “Saucier”. The Saucier is often the highest respected Chef in the kitchen, reporting directly to the Head or Sous Chef. Creating delicious sauces with depth of flavour is no easy task and one I am still aspiring towards myself. I do have my moments in the kitchen, where I make a sauce so delicious that I literally break out into dance and skip to Andrew, spoon in hand and make him taste it, heck, I’d make Mango & Oliver taste it too, if I could catch them. Andrew struggles to understand my excitement and has even gone so far as to say “It’s just a sauce!”… Stopping me in my tracks, mid Pirouette …”Just a sauce????” :-O
So imagine my delight when visiting the Mothership months ago (yes, I wasn’t going to share this secret weapon originally, but ’tis the season’ & all that, so think of this as my Christmas present to you) and I spotted this little beauty on the shelf.
For the foodies out there, you’ll know that a Demi-Glace sauce is a thick, rich brown sauce that can be used on its own or as a delicious base for other sauces. Making your own Demi-Glace could take days on the stove top. This is in my opinion, liquid gold!
You can add it to your gravies, other sauces, stews and soups to enrich the flavour and take it to restaurant quality. I’ve followed the suggestions on the box for a mushroom sauce … OMW, best mushroom sauce ever!!!
Inside the box is 8 little sachets of liquid gold- which is perfect, because you only need a little dash at a time. I always ensure that my pantry is stocked with at least 3 boxes … just incase.
So there you go, now you have a secret weapon for your Christmas Gravy this year.
Your’e Welcome 🙂
Photography by Darren Bester
Yield: Approximately 250ml
Thinly sliced french fries baked / fried & placed in canapé cones
2 Egg Yolks
1 Heaped tsp Dijon Mustard
Squeeze of Lemon Juice
1 Garlic Clove Mashed
125ml Canola Oil
125ml Olive Oil
Pinch of Salt
In a blender, combine the egg yolks, mustard, garlic, salt & lemon juice and give a quick blend on a low speed to combine (bout 10 or so seconds). Slowly start trickling the oil into the mixture until you can see that it starts to thicken, once it starts thickening you can increase the flow of oil into the blender until all the oil has been combined. Taste and season accordingly. If too thick, add another dash of lemon juice.
Cooks Notes: Refrigerate if not serving immediately. Will keep for 3 days in the fridge.