Hartford House

The Home of Good Conversation, Fine Wine and Classic Horses.

Award-winning hotel and restaurant situated at Summerhill Stud on the picturesque KwaZulu-Natal Midlands Meander, South Africa.

Filtering by Category: Jackie Cameron

Caprese Salad Recipe

Caprese Salad Photo : Jackie Cameron

Caprese Salad
Photo : Jackie Cameron

On a recent visit to Switzerland, I unexpectedly crossed the border one day for lunch in Italy. Choosing a traditional Caprese salad with Foccacia bread and Gnocchi Gorgonzola seemed the right thing to do. And it was. What a meal!

Caprese Salad

(Most popular summer Italian speciality featuring three primary ingredients : tomato, basil and mozzarella. Colours that reflect the national flag. Water buffalo mozzarella is always preferred.)

New Age Caprese Salad; Rosemary, Maldon Salt roasted Cherry Tomato Puff Pastry sitting on Fresh Basil Leaves and hand broken Buffalo Mozzarella drizzled with Olive Oil and Vinegar

Yields : 1

Ingredients :

Puff Pastry

4 strips of Mozzarella

5-10 ml Basil pesto

1 Sundried Tomato-soaked in boiling water and sliced

5 ml salted Butter

½ punnet Cherry Tomatoes-cut in half

Balsamic Vinegar

3 ml Maldon Salt

1 sprig Rosemary

½ ball Buffalo Mozzarella, if available

Fresh Basil Leaves

Olive Oil and Vinegar

Method :

1) Base. Roll out Puff Pastry and line a 8cm round tartlet base. Dock (Prick) the base all over. Put into the fridge for at least one hour for the pastry to relax. On top of the puff pastry base put a layer of greaseproof paper and fill with either baking beans, dried beans or rice and Bake Blind. (Chef's note: This is the term given to the method of cooking an empty pastry case.) Bake at 200̊C until the puff is cooked about 15 minutes

2) Cool the base and top with a thin layer of mozzarella. Place basil pesto on top of this layer together with sundried tomato slices

3) Heat a pan extremely well, add butter and tomatoes. Be careful not to overload the pan. Ensure searing. Splash the pan with balsamic

4) Place these hot tomatoes on top of the sundried tomatoes. Add a sprinkle of Maldon salt and chopped Rosemary. Finish with the buffalo mozzarella

5) Put this onto a tray and into a hot oven, 220˚C, allow heating until the buffalo mozzarella is just starting to melt

6) Serve on a bed of fresh basil leaves. Garnish with a good grind of black pepper and drizzle with olive oil and balsamic

Please post your comments and any food-related questions below.

I look forward to hearing from you.

jackie cameron

Jackie Cameron
Head Chef
Hartford House
www.hartford.co.za
jackie@hartford.co.za
+27 33 263 2713

Mint marinated Melon wrapped in Parma Ham Recipe

Mint Marinated Melon Wrapped in Parma Ham with Mint Sauce  Photo : Jackie Cameron

Mint Marinated Melon Wrapped in Parma Ham with Mint Sauce
Photo : Jackie Cameron

We all know how well Parma ham and fresh melon combine. Next time you serve it try marinating the melon in mint syrup before wrapping in the Parma ham. Oh so refreshing!

Mint marinated Melon wrapped in Parma Ham
(use Black forest Ham if Parma is not available)

Ingredients :

2 cups Water

1 cup White Sugar

Fresh Mint

Spanspek and/ or Sweet Melon

Parma Ham

Method :

1) Place the water and sugar into a saucepan. Heat and continue stirring until all the sugar crystals are dissolved. Simmer until a syrup consistency is reached. Add lots of freshly chopped mint to result in a green flavoursome syrup

2) Slice the melon and marinate over night in mint syrup if time allows

3) Wrap the melon in Parma ham and serve

Please post your comments and any food-related questions below.

I look forward to hearing from you.

jackie cameron

Jackie Cameron
Head Chef
Hartford House
www.hartford.co.za
jackie@hartford.co.za
+27 33 263 2713

Carla Ferrari's Focaccia Recipe

Focaccia Bread Photo : Jackie Cameron

Focaccia Bread
Photo : Jackie Cameron

On a recent visit to Switzerland, I unexpectedly crossed the border one day for lunch in Italy. Choosing a traditional caprese salad with Foccacia bread and Gnocchi Gorgonzola seemed the right thing to do. And it was. What a meal!

Carla Ferrari's Focaccia
(Flat oven baked Italian bread topped with herbs or whatever you desire)

Yields : 1 focaccia sized 23cm x 32cm

Ingredients :

15 g Instant, Dry Yeast

250 ml Luke warm Water

500 g White Flour

5 ml Fine Salt

125 ml Olive Oil

Extra Olive Oil

Maldon Salt

Rosemary

Method :

1) Allow the yeast to stand in the water for a few minutes

2) Place the flour and salt into a large bowl. Make a well in the centre and cut in the yeast mixture. Once this is all added in, add the olive oil

3) Knead on a counter top until you can see activity under the outer layer… little bubbles. Place in an oiled bowl and cover with a damp cloth and allow rising until double in size

4) Use your fingertips and push this bread dough out to cover the base of the oiled pan. Top with a drizzle of olive oil, Maldon salt and chopped rosemary - continue using your finger tips

5) Set aside and rise again slightly, bake at 220˚C until golden in colour and serve

Please post your comments and any food-related questions below.

I look forward to hearing from you.

jackie cameron

Jackie Cameron
Head Chef
Hartford House
www.hartford.co.za
jackie@hartford.co.za
+27 33 263 2713

Vitello Tonnato Recipe

Vitello Tonnato Photo : Jackie Cameron

Vitello Tonnato
Photo : Jackie Cameron

My interpretation of "Vitello Tonnato" (Roasted veal (vitello) thinly sliced with a sauce of pureed tuna (tonno), anchovy, capers, lemon and olive oil). I viewed this as a new-age, tuna mayonnaise and couldn't wait to get home to try out my version.

Vitello Tonnato

Yields : 2 - 4 portions

Ingredients :

1 Egg Yolk

2 ml Dijon Mustard

2 ml Hot Water

40 ml Virgin Olive Oil

120 ml Sunflower Oil

Freshly squeezed Lemon Juice

¼ Medium Onion – sauté

5 individual Capers

Anchovies

Worcestershire Sauce

125 g thinly sliced smoked Chicken (I supplemented Veal with Chicken, as Chicken is more readily available)

1 tin Tuna – in brine

Method:

1) Whisk the egg yolks well with the Dijon and water. Add both of the oils into this egg yolk mixture extremely slowly as you are wanting to make a permanent emulsion. Finish with a squeeze of lemon juice, salt and pepper

2) Add cooled onions, chopped capers, Worcestershire sauce and anchovies for taste. Finished with the drained tin of tuna

3) Place alternate layers of chicken and tuna sauce. Garnish with cherry Tomatoes, capers and onion rings if desired

Please post your comments and any food-related questions below.

I look forward to hearing from you.

jackie cameron

Jackie Cameron
Head Chef
Hartford House
www.hartford.co.za
jackie@hartford.co.za
+27 33 263 2713

Cheese Straws Recipe

Cheese Straws, Biltong and Nuts  Photo : Jackie Cameron

Cheese Straws, Biltong and Nuts
Photo : Jackie Cameron

The reverberation of vuvuzelas, and motor vehicles of all makes and  shapes sporting a flag or three, heralded a national unity unseen since  1995. The 2010 Fifa Soccer World Cup has arrived – and anticipation is  behind us.  Continued enthusiasm, spirit and ubuntu are inspiring and  I’m stirred by a warm, fuzzy proudly-South African sensation. With the  month-long festivities and little time to indulge in cookouts, I suggest  a selection of sensational bites.

Ensure you always have available thinly sliced biltong, the cheesiest-of-cheesy cheese straws and a selection of lightly-salted hot nuts. An assortment of olives and pickled onions are also an option. These quick-and-easy nibbles are the basics of my 'emergency kit'.

Cheese Straws

Yields : 40

Ingredients :

30g Gorgonzola Cheese, Crumbed

250 ml finely grated Cheddar Cheese

125 ml finely grated Pecorino or Parmesan Cheese

250 ml Cake Flour

5ml Durban Masala or Paprika

2ml Freshly Ground Black Pepper

100g Salted Butter, cut into blocks

1 Egg Yolk

Water

Method :

1) Pre-heat the oven to 220ºC.  Line a tray with baking paper and set aside

2) Using your fingertips mix all the cheeses together.  Then add the flour, masala, salt and pepper

3) Rub in the butter amount and then add the egg yolk

4) Bring this all together with a few drops of water to form a dough

5) Roll this dough out onto a floured surface and cut the straws into desired sizes.  (We do a height of: 5 mm, length of: 10cm and a width of : 1 cm)

6) Place the straws onto the tray and refrigerate for 20 minutes

7) Bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown in colour and cooked within

8) Remove from the oven and serve

Please post your comments and any food-related questions below.

I look forward to hearing from you.

jackie cameron

Jackie Cameron
Head Chef
Hartford House
www.hartford.co.za
jackie@hartford.co.za
+27 33 263 2713

Chilli Bites Recipe

Chilli Bites Photo : Jackie Cameron

Chilli Bites
Photo : Jackie Cameron

I enjoy something slightly spicy when having a drink or two. This sparks  memories of Dodo’s vegetable market in Church Street, Pietermaritzburg  where my mom would stock up on supplies and my dad would buy a large  paper packet filled with greasy chilli bites for my sister and I. The  outer crispness and the inner slightly-spicy softness - almost  sponginess - is a texture sensation. I add onion, tomato, pepper and  lots of roughly chopped Dhania. For its intensity and versatility I rate Dhania one of my favourite fresh herbs and served on Camembert it makes  a memorable meal with a homemade sweet chilli sauce, or with curry, or  in samoosas, or in salads or with chicken livers. The options are  endless.

Chilli Bites

Yields : about 25

Ingredients :

3 cups Pea Flour

20ml Roasted Cumin

½ white Onion, chopped

2 Tomatoes remove seeds and chop

1 small pepper, chopped

30 ml Durban Masala

½ bunch Fresh Dhania, finely chopped

¼ t Bicarbonate of Soda

350 ml Water

Method :

1) Heat oil for deep-frying

2) Add the cumin, onion, tomatoes, peppers, masala and Dhania to the pea flour

3) Finish with bicarb and the water.  (Add just enough water to make a soft dough.)

4) Spoon the chilli bite mixture into the warm oil and allow frying until golden in colour.  Remove and place on paper towelling.  Serve

Please post your comments and any food-related questions below.

I look forward to hearing from you.

jackie cameron

Jackie Cameron
Head Chef
Hartford House
www.hartford.co.za
jackie@hartford.co.za
+27 33 263 2713

Gorgonzola Samoosas Recipe

Gorgonzola Samoosas Photo : Jackie Cameron

Gorgonzola Samoosas
Photo : Jackie Cameron

The easiest samoosas are the gorgonzola-filled option and they never  fail to impress. I relish the warm centre of oozing gorgonzola  surrounded by the crisp spring-roll pastry. Simplicity at its best!

Gorgonzola Samoosas

Ingredients :

Gorgonzola

Spring roll Pastry

Cake Flour

Water

Method :

1) Divide the spring roll pastry into three long pieces about 7cm wide and 21 cm long.  Cut down this division line and cover with a damp cloth

2) Make a slurry or flour/water paste and set aside

3) Make, 10g, balls of gorgonzola and set aside

4) Roll up your samoosa, deep fry and serve

Rolling instructions

*Place your individual spring roll pastry vertically in front of you.  Take the left hand bottom corner of the pastry and fold it, making it form a triangle that is touching the right hand side of the pastry. 

*Place the gorgonzola ball under this pastry flap and push this down securely making sure the corners are pointed and closed tightly so no cheese will later ooze out.  *Where the triangle forms a line on the pastry (the top open flap of your triangle shape).  Fold the pastry along this line and lift your triangle so the bottom point touches about ¾ its way up the right hand side of the pastry.

*Then take the bottom right corner of the pastry and fold this tightly over to the left hand side keeping in mind you want a triangular shape.  Allow each side to meet perfectly so all corners are tight so no later oozing on frying.

*Place a thin brush of the slurry or flour paste at the top of your pastry and continue the same process of rolling up.

Please post your comments and any food-related questions below.

I look forward to hearing from you.

jackie cameron

Jackie Cameron
Head Chef
Hartford House
www.hartford.co.za
jackie@hartford.co.za
+27 33 263 2713

Smoked Snoek Spread Recipe

Smoked Snoek Spread Photo : Jackie Cameron

Smoked Snoek Spread
Photo : Jackie Cameron

A smoked snoek spread brings South   Africa into your television room.  Serve this with paper-thin Melba toast, bowls of roasted garlic, caper  berries and sundried tomatoes. Scrumptious!

Smoked Snoek Spread

Yields : about 320g

Ingredients :

85 g Smoked Snoek or Smoked Trout

1 ½ cloves crushed Garlic

5 sprigs Chopped Fennel

6 sprigs Chopped Chives

15 ml freshly squeezed Lemon Juice

¼ Onion or 1 ½ T grated Onion

200g Cream Cheese

60 ml of lightly whipped Cream

Salt and freshly ground Black Pepper

Method :

1) Flake the snoek or trout into small pieces (chef’s note: when using trout lightly pan sear in butter to allow easy flaking)

2) Add the garlic, fennel, chives, lemon juice and onion to the snoek

3) Finish with the cream cheese and cream amount

4) Season and serve with Melba Toast (chef’s note: use stale bread or freeze your bread overnight.  This will make slicing quick and easy.  Once sliced place into an oven on a low heat to allow even drying out until crispy.)

Please post your comments and any food-related questions below.

I look forward to hearing from you.

jackie cameron

Jackie Cameron
Head Chef
Hartford House
www.hartford.co.za
jackie@hartford.co.za
+27 33 263 2713

Sweet Chilli Sauce Recipe

Sweet Chilli Sauce Photo : Jackie Cameron

Sweet Chilli Sauce
Photo : Jackie Cameron

I enjoy something slightly spicy when having a drink or two. This sparks  memories of Dodo’s vegetable market in Church Street, Pietermaritzburg  where my mom would stock up on supplies and my dad would buy a large  paper packet filled with greasy chilli bites for my sister and I. The  outer crispness and the inner slightly-spicy softness - almost  sponginess - is a texture sensation. I add onion, tomato, pepper and  lots of roughly chopped dhanya. For its intensity and versatility I rate  dhanya one of my favourite fresh herbs and served on Camembert it makes  a memorable meal with a homemade sweet chilli sauce, or with curry, or  in samoosas, or in salads or with chicken livers. The options are  endless.

Sweet Chilli Sauce

Yields: about 70 ml

Ingredients :

½ cup White Wine Vinegar

½ cup Water

½ cup White Sugar

4 Red Chilli (remove the seeds and thinly slice to result in about 10g of Chilli)

7 g Garlic, grated

15 g Ginger, grated

Method :

1) Heat the vinegar, water and sugar together in a saucepan.  Stirring all the time until all sugar crystals are dissolved

2) Add the chillies, ginger, garlic and reduce until a syrup consistency is reached

3) Serve chilled

Please post your comments and any food-related questions below.

I look forward to hearing from you.

jackie cameron

Jackie Cameron
Head Chef
Hartford House
www.hartford.co.za
jackie@hartford.co.za
+27 33 263 2713

Avocado Guacamole Recipe

Avocado Guacamole Photo  : Jackie Cameron

Avocado Guacamole
Photo : Jackie Cameron

On a healthier note, an avocado guacamole served with crudités (raw  vegetables cut into bite-size strips) is light and satisfying. Nearby,  place slices of old-style homemade cumin flavoured white bread and  excellent-quality balsamic vinegar and olive oil. This will allow guests  to drizzle vinegar and oil on the bread and, for a more substantial  portion, finish with a spread of guacamole.

Avocado Guacamole

Yields : 1 bowl size

Ingredients :

2 Avocados, about 200g

15 ml freshly squeezed Lemon Juice

¼ Red Onion, chopped

½ Red Chilli, seeds removed and sliced

10ml fresh Mint, finely chopped

1 small garlic clove

½ medium Tomato, seeds removed and chopped

40g Cucumber, chopped

Tabasco, to taste

Salt and Pepper

Method :

1) With a fork lightly work the avocado until semi-smooth, add lemon juice and all the other ingredients

2) Finish with the Tabasco, salt and pepper

Please post your comments and any food-related questions below.

I look forward to hearing from you.

jackie cameron

Jackie Cameron
Head Chef
Hartford House
www.hartford.co.za
jackie@hartford.co.za
+27 33 263 2713