asparagus spears
bacon strips halved lengthwise
Wash asparagus and cut 2 cm off the ends.
Place each bacon strip on a chopping board at a 45 degree angle.
Place one of the asparagus spears on top of the meat, perpendicular to it.
The tip of the asparagus should be lined up with the bottom of the bacon strip. Wrap the bottom end of bacon over the asparagus and holding the meat tight, start rolling the asparagus up.
The bacon strip will wrap around the whole length of the spear because it’s on an angle.
You can secure ends with toothpicks and don’t worry if parts of the asparagus spears are not covered completely.

Notes: You can pre-wrap the asparagus ahead of time until you cook. It’s best served just off the fire


Hubby decided he feels like something different and fishy:
1 cup uncooked rice
Thyme leaves
Basil leaves
Parsley flakes

1 onion roughly chopped
Fresh or bottled garlic
1 bag of scallops
1 bag of prawns
2 crayfish tails

Cook rice as normal (we always do it in the microwave) and add all the listed ingredients when cooking. Set aside.
Chop onion and add garlic and olive oil in pan and fry till nicely browned.
Fry the scallops and prawns (bit by bit) in butter with more garlic. As you have completed one batch, add it to the rice and onion mixture and keep warm in the oven while preparing the next batch.
Continue till all done and mix together.
In the meantime, fire up the BBQ and grill the crayfish tails which you have cut open and rubbed with some butter and garlic. If you do not wish to do this on the BBQ, just bake it, or leave it out altogether.
Super super yummy – thanks to hubby.

NOTE:  the quantities for the spices for the rice is up to you as per your personal taste.

Source: Esme Slabbert’s kitchen – hubby’s creation


stroganoff esmetested
85 g mushrooms
570 g Stroganoff meat
½ cup onion, chopped
1/8 teaspoon
black pepper
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
60 g red wine
1 cup beef broth
¼ cup sour cream
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/8 teaspoon salt

Heat your oven to warm setting. Sprinkle the meat with salt and pepper.
In a large non-stick pan heat the oil over medium-high heat. Brown the meat in batches, about 1 minute per side. Transfer to a platter and place in the oven.
Melt the butter in the pan; add the onion and cook for 3 minutes, until softened. Add the mushrooms. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the mushroom liquid evaporates.
Add the wine; cook for 5 minutes. Stir in the beef broth and cook for 10 minutes, until the mushrooms are coated with a thick sauce. Stir in the sour cream and mustard. Add the meat and accumulated juices.
Reduce the heat to low and cook for 2-3 minutes, until the meat is heated through. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Photo and recipe posted by Esme Slabbert





500g bag frozen spinach
8 medium potatoes
2 cups grated Cheddar cheese
¾ cup crumbled bacon pieces
12 slices inside round for rouladen (minute steak)
½-1 cup barbecue sauce
1 tbsp dried onion flakes

Drain the spinach well and season with salt and ground black pepper
Boil potatoes until tender (add some garlic to the water for extra flavor), about 15-20 minutes. Drain well
Cut potatoes into smaller chunks (I did not mash it), then stir in cheese, bacon, and add salt, pepper and dried onion flakes.
Unroll Rouladen and spread some spinach direct onto the meat, then add the potato mix and spread out over the length of the meat. Leave some space at the top and bottom end open to make it easier to roll. Roll up and place some toothpicks in to hold it together.
Place into a baking pan covered with some olive oil to prevent sticking.
Cover with barbecue source – I used a brush to paint it over the top and sides. Place in preheated oven @ 400 Degrees F and bake for 30-45 minutes till done and browned.

Source: Esme’s kitchen


Veggie Chickpea Salad – Vegan
2 cans of chickpeas, rinse off the chickpeas and drain them
2 small green onions – chopped into small pieces
½ cucumber (sliced and halved)
2 tablespoons chopped basil and cilantro (did not have fresh cilantro, so skipped it)
cherry tomatoes – halved
2 beet, thinly sliced and then steamed
8 asparagus, steamed and sliced into bite size
You can also add the following it you have it available:
Place everything on a bed of shredded lettuce
1 small handful sun-dried tomatoes
1 sweet potato, sliced and steamed
1 red and 1 green bell pepper (cut into small pieces)

Rinse the chickpeas, and let it drip dry.
Chop green onion, or use a scissor to cut it into small pieces
Slice cucumber and half each slice
Chop basil and cilantro or use the scissors here as well
Half the cherry tomatoes
Peel the beet and slice into thin slices and steam to slightly soft, not overly done – still need some crunch
Cut off the hard stems of the asparagus and slice into bite size pieces and also steam to crunchy.

Should you prefer to use any of the additional ingredients, cut sun-dried tomatoes into smaller pieces
Peel the Sweet potato and slice into thin slices and steam to slightly soft, not overly done – still need some crunch
Cut the red and green peppers into slivers and then then into 1/3’s

You can pack layers of those ingredients you wish to use, and then toss or just leave in layers.
Place into the fridge to cool down and till ready to use.

Avocado Dressing:
½ avocado
1 Spiralized Zucchini
1 Tbsp Tahini paste
Sea salt & pepper to taste

I added some VOO and cider vinegar when I blended the dressing, in order to get a softer and smooth mixture. Serve with salad.
Note: Late this afternoon, when I wanted to use the left over for dinner, I added some thinly sliced steamed yam (sweet potato) and extra steamed asparagus.
As for the dressing, I added some milk to make it thinner and its perfect, more like a dressing than a spread, which I prefer
Served with yummy single serving seed bread.

Source: Esms’s own combination of a number of old favourites




1 medium red onion, chopped (reserve 2 tbsp, finely chopped, for topping)
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 carrot, thinly sliced
4-5 crimini (or button) mushrooms, sliced
1/4 cup bell pepper, chopped (optional)
2 cups vegetable broth or water
1 cup brown rice (jasmine, long grain, short grain, basmati)
1 cup greens, chopped (swiss chard, kale, collard greens, or spinach)
1/2 cup green onions or chives, chopped
11/2 cups black beans, cooked (1 can is ok, rinse and drain well)
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/4 cup nutritional yeast (optional, but tasty)
1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 Tbsp medium-high heat oil of choice
In a deep skillet, add tablespoon of oil and saute onion, garlic, mushrooms, pepper, and carrot for 2-3 minutes.
Add rice and stir 30 seconds until glossy.
Add vegetable broth or water, bring to a gentle boil, reduce heat to low and simmer 20-30 minutes until liquid is absorbed and rice is cooked.
Add chives and greens to pan, along with black beans, salt, chili powder, nutritional yeast, and lemon juice.
Stir well and cover for 1 min to let beans and greens heat through.
Plate and top with finely chopped red onion. Enjoy!

Source: Esme’s archive




1 onion, finely chopped
Olive oil 45 ml (3 tbsp.)
2.5 ml (½ tsp.) Ground cumin dried
2.5 ml (½ tsp.) Dried ground coriander
1 clove garlic, minced
375 ml (1 ½ cups) chicken or vegetable broth
375 ml (1 ½ cup) couscous
1 can of 398 ml (14 oz) chickpeas, rinsed and drained 
1 red pepper, seeded and diced
2 Lebanese cucumbers unpeeled, diced
125 ml (½ cup) feta cheese, crumbled (you can omit this for vegan version)
125 ml (½ cup) chopped fresh parsley
Salt and pepper

1. Using a large nonstick skillet, cook onion in oil over medium heat until it begins to brown. Add the spices and garlic and cook 2 minutes. Salt and pepper. Add the broth and bring to the boil.
2. Add couscous and mix well. Cover, remove from heat and let stand 5 minutes. Using a fork, undo the couscous. Leave to cool.
3. In a large bowl, mix the remaining ingredients and add to this the couscous. Mix everything well.

Photo: Adam Cloete
Nota:  Ek het mielies in plaas van chickpeas gebruik en ek dink dit het dit nog lekkerder gemaak as wat die chickpeas sou.



6 eggs
1 stalk of kale
4 raw young asparagus spears
5-6 spring onions/scallions
½ – 1 cup grated cheddar cheese
½ – ¾ cup biltong
Spices (your decide), I used Aromat (to taste, remember as you have salty biltong, do not overdo it) and ½ teaspoon basil pesto.

Wisk eggs, and cut up all the rest of the ingredients and mix well together.
Spice to your taste.
Pour into 2 greased ramekins and bake @ 400F till set and browned.
Add some extra pieces of biltong at the end, just because you have some more and needed extra added to the dish!
Source:  Esme Slabbert​





2 cups Berries (I usually use half black and half blueberries, but you can you either or both)
½ cup water
¼ cup sugar
1 tsp lemon juice
2 tsp cornstarch

Mix ½ berries (can also use ½ blueberries and ½ blackberries), ½ water, all the sugar and all lemon juice.
Stir and bring to boil
Turn down heat, simmer 7 to 10 minutes
Mix cornstarch into rest of water until dissolved and add to the wild berry mix
Stir until thickens, then add the remaining blueberries
Cook 3 minutes on low.
Bottle and store
Note: When I make this sauce, I usually do up to 10 pounds of berries, and then I have it for a year (or maybe less, as we use it a lot). Nice as gifts and also very very yummy on ice cream!!!

If you want to use it as a topping on i.e a cheesecake, use 1 cup (size of the bottle in the picture), mix 1 packet of gelatin with lukewarm water, then add the berry mixture to it and mix through. Spread over your cheesecake and let it set. Yummy

Source: Unknown, but highly modified by Esme Slabbert



60g butter, softened
⅓ cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 tablespoons plain flour
⅓ cup dried cranberries
⅓ cup shelled, unsalted pistachio nuts
⅓ cup slivered almonds
100g good quality dark chocolate
500ml of the best quality chocolate or vanilla bean gelato you can find, I used Gelista

Preparation method

Preheat your oven to 200°C. Line your cookie trays with baking paper.

In a bowl, beat together the butter and sugar with electric beaters, until they are light and fluffy. Beat in the vanilla and flour. Stir through the cranberries and nuts, mix well. Working in small batches (there needs to be ample room for the florentines to spread) place heaped teaspoons of the mix on the sheets. I do no more than 6 per sheet.

Cook the florentines for approximately 7 minutes until they have spread and are golden brown around the edges. As soon as they are out of the oven, using a knife mould the edges into even circles, then let them sit on the tray for 2 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat with the remaining mix. This recipe will make 24 biscuits.

Once the florentines are all cooling on the rack, melt the chocolate (in a double boiler or in short bursts in the microwave) then drizzle or pipe evenly over the top of the florentines. Leave to cool.

To make the world’s best sandwich, lay one florentine on your plate, top with a scoop of your desired gelato, then top with the second biscuit. Eat immediately and die from extreme, foodgasmic pleasure (you won’t literally die).

Source: Esme Slabbert​ received the above from brother from AUS