TWO rising stars on South Africa’s culinary horizon are behind this weekend’s three-course, Asian-inspired menu.
Sue-Ann Allen and Ilse Fourie first met when both were contestants on MasterChef South Africa in 2012.
The two have collaborated closely ever since and, as the Gourmet Sisters, continue to share their ideas, including through their recently released cookery book by the same title.
Both women are noted food bloggers and Ilse also did the Ilse Kook series with KykNET.
I’ve chosen three recipes from Gourmet Sisters: Sharing Food and Friendship, which the friends published late last year.
In their book the two have chosen 41 ingredients and built a collection of recipes around each.
Gourmet Sisters is published by Human & Rousseau and its recommended retail price is R245.
STARTER: Peanut butter peri-peri prawns
This recipe serves four as a main course but as I have decided to do it as a starter it should serve six.
“I can give you many recipes for prawns, but I do not know a single version that tastes better than this one,” says Ilse, who credits a foodie friend, Brian, with this signature recipe. The prawns can be done on the braai or stovetop.
1 kg prawns (26/30 per 800g)
5 Tbsp butter
5 cloves garlic, crushed
7 Tbsp lemon juice
4 Tbsp smooth peanut butter
½ cup Portuguese peri-peri sauce
½ of a 400ml tin of coconut milk
salt and pepper
If the prawns are frozen, thaw them in cold water. De-vein and butterfly the prawns.
Melt the butter in an extra-large pan and fry the garlic for 30 seconds. Add the prawns and move them around so that they are completely covered in butter.
Add the lemon juice. When the prawns are just about turning pink, add the peanut butter and keep stirring until it has dissolved.
Add the peri-peri sauce, give a quick stir through and then add the coconut milk. Bring to a boil and then remove from the heat. Season to taste and serve with rice.
Ilse says fresh Portuguese rolls are a must for scooping up the leftover sauce.
MAIN COURSE: Thai- steamed hake on tatsoi with mango salad
Ilse says this recipe is light and fresh, and wonderful on a warm summer’s day. It serves two.
2 tsp sweet chilli sauce
1/4 cup fish sauce
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1 Tbsp peanut oil
1 tsp sesame oil
2 cloves garlic, crushed
thumb-sized piece fresh root ginger, grated
2 tsp grated palm sugar
1 red chilli, seeded and sliced
1 Indonesian lime leaf
1 stick lemon grass, sliced
2 x 150 to 200g fresh hake fillets
For the mango salad:
1 packet tatsoi leaves
100g mange tout, sliced
2 spring onions, sliced
1/2 mango, diced
1 Tbsp each chopped fresh basil, coriander and mint
1 red chilli, finely chopped
Place the sweet chilli sauce, fish sauce, lime juice, oils, garlic, ginger and palm sugar in a blender, and blend until combined. Pour half the dressing into a jug and set aside for the salad. Add the red chilli, lime leaf and lemon grass to the other half in the blender and blend well.
Pour the sauce from the blender over the fish and marinate for about 30 min.
To make the salad, mix all the ingredients together and toss with the reserved dressing.
Remove the fish from the marinade and place in a steamer lined with baking paper. Add the leftover marinade to the steaming liquid and steam the fish for eight to 10 min, depending on the size of the fillets. Serve with jasmine rice and the dressed salad.
DESSERT: Trio of mini chocolate samoosas
“Sometimes a bite is enough and sometimes a whole slab doesn’t suffice,” writes chocoholic Sue-Ann. Her recipe serves six.
1 slab good-quality milk chocolate, broken into blocks
1 slab good-quality dark chocolate, broken into blocks
1 slab good quality white chocolate, broken into blocks
spring roll pastry, cut into 18 strips measuring 20×5 cm
milk to seal edges
2 cups canola oil
vanilla ice cream to serve
seasonal berries to garnish
Place one block of chocolate into the corner of a pastry strip and fold, ensuring to form a samoosa that all the sides are tucked in. Seal with a light brushing of milk. Place the completed samoosa under a damp tea towel.
Continue with the remaining chocolate until all the pastry strips have been used, ensuring that the chocolate variations are kept separate.
Heat the oil in a large saucepan and fry the samoosas in batches. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on paper towels to drain excess oil.
Place one samoosa of each kind on individual plates and serve with vanilla ice cream. Garnish with berries.