Tuesday, 14 June 2011

The most amazing chocolate pie for lazy people

Ok, so I have to be totally honest upfront. None of the pictures linked to this post are mine. Not 1. I have borrowed them all from the net and for a very good reason... I have been banned from ever making this pie. Not because it is bad, or because it goes to waste, but because neither my best friend nor my husband have any control when it comes to eating it. Also, it and my butt have issues cause it is seriously rich and tempting to eat. So, I went and found photos on the net that look JUST like it, and used those, so that I don't need to actually make the darn thing.

I love this pie. It’s easy and if you have a sweet tooth then this will go down a treat. I love chocolate and the only saving grace that this pie has is that I find it physically impossible to eat more than a bowl full at a time.

My mom in law first made this pie and then made many small ones for my wedding dessert in 2002. She passed the basic recipe down to me and I have made it ever since.
Since then I have changed small things and have come up with the laziest, easiest chocolate pie on god’s green earth.

Now I do not claim to be the greatest cook/baker/chef/food mangler on earth, but I defy ANYONE to screw this up. Really.


1 Box/packet of biscuits (like Romany Creams or Ginger biscuits depending on what you like)

Ok so this is where this gets more or a "pick your own ending" kinda pie. You have a couple of options as to what you want to do starting with the base:

You can go for the traditional base of fine crushed Tennis biscuits or ginger or whichever you want. Finally crush 1 packet of biscuits and mix with 30ml of melted butter or margarine. Mix well and push firmly to base of pie dish

Alternatively, and this is the method I like, you can go with the lazy version that does not require hours of beating biscuits to death with a rolling pin:

Take one box of Romany creams. The chocolate ones with the vanilla icing in the middle. Break into chunky pieces. (A box allows for at least 3 to be eaten) place the pieces in the bottom of a pie dish so that the whole base is covered) don’t make the pieces too big.
The reason for using these specific biscuits is it gives a nice contrast with the dark chocolate filling.


To make the basic pie filling you will need:

1 Tin of Dessert Cream (the large one not the small one)
2 x 100grm Dark chocolate slabs (you can use milk choc, but it makes it TERRIBLY SWEET then)
(The above quantities are for pie using the fine crushed biscuit base method. If you using the lazy Romany cream one, double them)

Break the chocolate into pieces (do not eat any)
Take dessert cream. Pour into dish and microwave for a min or just over, until it just starts to bubble. Mix chocolate into cream until it is all melted in and mixed. 
Pour over biscuit base
(The reason that Romany cream biscuit base method needs the filling quantity doubled is because it filters down over the pieces as opposed to sitting on top of the fine crushed biscuit base)

Put in fridge and leave till set. This should take an hour or two.


Use 1 tin of cream and 2 slabs of dark chocolate for the initial filling and let set.
Once set, use 1 tin of cream and 2 x 100grm slabs of WHITE chocolate and pour over the set dark choc filling.
Let set

You can top it with cream, stick fruit on top, serve with glasses of Amarula (this I recommend), ice-cream....whatever floats your boat.

Basically, once you have the basic recipe figured out you can put your own spin on it and try other odds and ends.

Ok so there you go. This will be a staple emergency OMW we need dessert ASAP recipe. No mixers, no blenders, nothing but a bit of heat and a fridge.

With all that time on your hands after making this, I suggest sitting with a glass of wine and enjoying some peace, while licking out the bowl! 

Till later & happy baking

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Preserving class at Oded's Kitchen

At 10h45 this morning, sunglasses firmly on and clutching my super sharp knife, I arrived at Oded's Kitchen at the Old Buiscit Mill in Woodstock for their preserving class with Oded. Greeted by super cheerful Ming (a part time worker bee at the kitchen) who speedily got a mug of filter coffee into my half asleep hands (I don't operate well without coffee in the mornings in 2 or 3 mug quantities to get me going) Turned out it was MOI Moo, and 5 others (one of them being Indigo Girl who I blame for my early appearance on this bright morning) Once we were all there (clutching beverage of choice) Oded began the class.

Oded teaching with Ming on the camera.
Starting with the Oded's Kitchen preserves and relishes, we worked our way through the tasters. Aubagine Relish, Carrot and Almond, Caramelised Onion. Also on taste was the Oded's Tahini (interesting recipe to follow using this thanks to one of my fellow preservers, Sasha) I know most of them from the food markets, but it was nice to get to try the one or two I haven't seen before. The brown sugar marmalade was DELICIOUS.

We then partnered up and moved onto the cooking part of the day. I had a fantastic partner by way of Sasha, a very cool modern Martha Stewart. She makes cakes from SCRATCH.... not from box mix. I mean so can I but I'm just to lazy most of the time. This woman works and  does REAL cakes. Superwoman delux.
Yes the one on the right is me!
We got started on the Cucumber preserve while the other 2 teams made Tomato Relish and Lemon Marmalade (this was Indigo Girl and Andrew's) Unfortunately Oded was unable to stay with us for the course, so Ming carried it on. We cooked and grated, and sliced and diced madly.

Putting boiling water over the onions and carrots
After salting the cucumber it needs
to stand for 15 mins
The layering of the jars is the only really involved bit in making the Cucumber Preserve, with all the jars needing to be neatly layered. This is NOT my forte'. I'm more of a toss in and shake kinda girl!

My fellow preservers.
My partner, Sasha is the Brunette back left
Oded with Indigo Girl and Andrew....
 the Lemon Marmalade Team

Left: Tomato Relish, Back: Onion Marmalade
Right: Cucumber Preserve

And just to top the fantastic day off, we got to snack on Oded's snacks that I take great pleasure in eating at the fairs. We were treated to Spinach sponge roll with cream cheese & blue cheese; Snoek Cigars; Aubagine and almond half moons, Spinach & cream cheese mini sausage rolls. Droooool. Please believe me when I say that should you ever come across a stall or the Oded's shop, do yourself a favour and BUY AS MANY OF THESE SNACKS AS YOU CAN. You will be sorry if you don't.

(left to right) Tomato Relish, Lemon Marmalade, Cucumber Preserve
The days lesson ended with our each getting one of each of the products made. We walked out happy, clutching our goodies and having spent an amazing day preserving and making new friends. Thanks Oded's Kitchen. It wasn't quite the day as planned, but it did make good memories and hopefully, in a few days, we'll have tasty preserves to eat too. :)

Friday, 10 June 2011

Milk tarts and the Mexican Dinner

So, last night was what is turning into Supper Club night at Indigo Girl & Batman (Sorry Allan, I just like you as Batman!) And last night was Mexican Night.... FANFRICKKING TASTIC :)

So, yesterday I was talked into trying my hand at Milk Tart.... Sigh. You know theres that point in a receipe that says something like "while stirring the mixture will thicken" and you just know that it's not going to do that, weeeell that was my afternoon. I found an awesome sounding Milk Tart receipe and made up tart no 1. The pictures are for tarts 1 & 2. Tart 1 is in the black dish and Tart 2 (the coconut adjustment) is in the white one.

By T2, I decided to just make the bloody pastry in the dish. Worked quite well I must say.

I did have a problem both ways with getting it out afterwards with the filling to eat. Pastry and I do NOT get on. I believe that all pies and tarts should have biscuit bases. Its just simpler that way.

Anyway, back to T1. At the point it wasn't thickening, I thought maybe when it calls for 2 large eggs, I should use 4 of my small ones not 2. At this point I'm going "HOLY S#$% we eating this with a straw and trying to figure out what was wrong. Look, at the end of the day, T1 tasted like Milk Tart but had anything but Milk Tart consistancy (My bestfriend thought it was great even tho I had to GLooumP it into a bowl), and T2 had a fantastic Coconut taste (substituted 1/2 the milk for coconut milk, and added coconut to it too)

T1 (to the left) has the basic cinnimon topping (well, it has it in it too after I scraped it out the dish and added another egg and........ ok so just don't go there!)

T2 had an interesting blend of cinnamon and coconut that I mixed together then sprinkled on top.

This was the Tart that was going with to dinner last night at Food Blogger delux, Indigo Girl. Great. I now have a tart that is a) potentially not going to set, going to b) a food bloggers house where c) there were going to be other people to palm it onto but d) I had NO idea what it would taste like........sigh. Oh well. Lets do it lol.

So, I of course got there after everyone as usual, being as I work for myself and seem to now put in more hours then I did. I arrived clutching the required bottle of wine (we drink a lot of that, but mine is LITE on calories and low in THERE) and the potentially offending Tart.

Dinner was FANTASTIC with Indigo Girl whipping up not only great nosh, but the most, absolutely, fantastically awesome Chilli Poppers I have ever ever had.

The table, laden with food
and surrounded by hungry friends.    
On the menu was: Chicken Nachos, Chilli Poppers, Chicken & Cheese Quesidellias, as well as various extras to add.    

 The empty table and Indigo Girl eating a popper that should have been MINE MINE MINE!!

Anyway, by the time we got to the Tart, while it wasn't totally set, it was sorta set and went down an absolute treat. Apparently the coconuttymilktarty taste was yummy enough that no one cared what the tart looked like, and I'm perfectly ok with that.

So, that was yesterday in a milk laden nutshell.


FYI: Indigo Girl will be posting on her blog about the Mexican Night, with recipes, and I do suggest if you like poppers to keep an eye, cause hers were MAAAAGNIFICANT!
Indigo Girl blog at:

Wednesday, 08 June 2011

This cow thing...?

Ok,  ok. I think that perhaps in between my inane ramblings on food, I should explain the cow thing. The very odd, very all consuming cow thing that has me in its hoofie grip.

I love cows...not all cows, black and white cows, and have for a few years now.

It started with a cow in my local shopping centre that I had to have a pic of, then came the cow pj's:
and from then on it just grew and grew into the kind of crazy that only Jack Sparrow would understand.

I now own everything from stuffed cows, to cow clothing, cow pens, cow cups, a milk bottle with cows on, and even a fantastic hat that was brought back from Germany, just for me as well as my awsome cow print duvet.

Did I mention that for my 30th birthday, not only did I have a limo...but also cow cupcakes!

So, if you were wondering where my blog got its name, there's part of the explanation. I also love pink and calling it Psychedelic Cow, ment I could have my favourite colours with my creature in all its Bovine Beauty!

So there you go. Now you know how I got my nickname (Moo) and why my blog is totally Bovinated

Taraaa till later

Monday, 06 June 2011

Saturday at the Tokai market

Now, far be it from me to claim to be the most up to date on the goings on around me but HOW DID I MISS THIS GEM?

Indigo girl, over a fantastic Spag Bol dinner (see here: ) was telling about the Tokai market that she would be working at this past Sat, and said I had to I did.

I got there at quater to 12 (its open from 9am - 2pm) and found the basics of a grand little market in one spot. Cheeses, pies, brownies, preserves, and ofcourse Indigo Girl manning the Obed's Kitchen stall.

Of course after I had browsed, tasting the olives from the olive guy, the cheese from the cheese guy and tasting all the other goodies that are on display, I made myself useful and jumped in to help Indigo at the stall. WHAT a blast. I chatted to people about everything from how to cook the perfect Rolled Roast Beef with Obed's mustard, to tempting people with a bit of bread with Hummus and chillies on top, to roasting Shank with caramalised onions... I think I had far to much fun.

After grabbing a cup of coffee, and buying a yummy Guinness and Steak pie (mmmmmmmmMMM!!) I ambled off to enjoy my finds after a perfect Saturday morning.

Wednesday, 01 June 2011

Good Food & Wine Show

So, Thurs 26 May, I was lucky enough to score a complimentary ticket to the Good Food & Wine Show from my good friend Indigo Girl (Follow her food blog here ... ) who has a passion for food and a joy for tasting and cooking possibly only matched my moi. After a morning spent getting the humdrum of daily living out the way, I braved the suicidal CT drivers and headed into Town.

First off let me say that the CTICC needs to jack itself up with regards to the parking issue, or, soon, it may find itself getting the short end of its visitors sticks. I for one refuse to spend over R15 an hour on parking, and parked outside in the parking area diagonally across from Entrance 5. R14 for the parking in its entirety and a happy me. A bit of a walk (3 mins) in but worth it.
Getting into the show was fine too. As usual everyone looked SUPER enthusiastic (not) but still were efficient enough.... well except for the lass I practically chased down to get my goodie bag (a vital part of the show) This years goodies were somewhat ....humdrum. Wet/dry Calton towel, Antibacterial wipes, a small pack of rice, and a teeny tube of face cream....... um....wait I hear you say, FACE CREAM???? Yup, I have NO idea why. But, thanks :)

Once in, I was happy to find that unlike last year, with its ticket giveaway, this years Thursday was busy but not super packed. Upon finding Indigo Girl and her Knight for the day, Mike, we headed into the massive gastronomical enchanted forest......

All the usual suspects were on show. The wines, the food, the baked goods, the sausage, the.... well you get the idea. I was a bit disappointed at the lack of creativity tho. Yes yes the cupcakes looked great, and the fudge was creamy but you can only look at so many loaves of onion bread, so to speak, before you are full, flatulent and bored! While everything that was on show was delicious and beautifully displayed, I had seen most of it last year. Where are the really interesting day to day add in's to Mom's cooking that will entice her to buy that MUST have spice or whatever other odd item. Yes there are rubs galore but realistically, most housewives today can't toddle off to Woolies on a weekly basis and buy a R40 jar of oven roasted bumble bees for their daily cooking. For the restaurant owners, and Constantia mommies the show is a great way to spend money and time, for the rest of us plebs, well we spend it watching other people pay R350 plus to cook with chefs that we can only dream of meeting (Sulk, i really wanted to find out about that snail porridge, Mr. Blumenthal) Also, why can't I taste EVERYTHING. In my opinion, if its on your stand, I want to be able to taste it. Don't stick stuff out to buy that I can't taste first. That's mean, and not really fair. If you want me to spend R40 on a pizza, I want to taste it first.

All that said, I really did have a lovely time. I tasted wines, I tasted preserves, I tasted chocolate without sugar (super tasty) at the Caring Candies Stand, and the most amazing Toffee in the most amazing range of flavours, wrapped in stripy wrapping....who's name totally eludes me! I had delicious beef with caramalised onion on a pasty base snack from Orinoco (and they were super friendly too) But, my favorite (its my blog so I am allowed to be a little biased!) was when I was treated to a personal showing of Obeds Kitchen, where Indigo Girl is partly employed to pay for her love for shoes and debilitating fetish for food! She had swanned on for days about the quality and taste of Obeds preserves..... and boy was she right. Lewis welcomed us with an amazing chillie mush on a spoon. DELICIOUS. I love roasts and am always looking for interesting preserves and goodies to smear, mix or add to things, and Obeds Kitchen is the place to find them. The friendliness behind the counter was a breath of fresh air. However, the icing on the proverbial cake, was, the Spinach Sponge roll. This can only be explained as spinach presented in a long soft spongy rolled up .... roll, filled with blue cheese, cream cheese and just mouth watering taste. One bite and I had to leave, lest I use all my pennies to purchase the rest of the slices and consume them, Butt fat be dammed!!!

Did I enjoy the show? Yes. Do I think it needs to be made more average person friendly with more cost effective treats and shows? Yes. Was it the (as I described to Indigo Girl) Gastronomical Smorgasbord of culinary delights..... yes, for the most part. At 7pm I dragged my sore feet away (PUMPS next year!!) and clutching my goodie bag of business cards, rice, towels...etc in my tired arms, and strolled out to my car knowing that I still didn't like mint on savory food but Creamed Aubergine on toast was great!
All in all, well Done CTICC. Good Show.

Saturday 28th and the WPKA

So Saturday brought an afternoon excursion to the Wynberg Military Base Gym hall to watch the WPKA (Western Province Kickboxing Association) trials to whittle down to the folks that would go to Langabaan for the Provincial Trials. Being as we (Eugene and I) are super into our MMA, and as it was being hosted by Takedown (our MMA Gym), this seemed like a great way to spend R60 and a Saturday afternoon……..we were soon to be shown the error of our ways.

Just after half past 3 (it started at 9am but Full contact only started from 3 and ran to 7ish) we drove into the base, and, with some sketchy directional details from the gate guard, we alighted on our destination…….. which looked like a combination of a large barn, and something the army would hide Optimus Prime in (see my addiction to Transformers!) Walking in we were greeted by a super happy door/sales/person who took our R60 each and tried to then sell us WPKA tee shirts. Even enthusiastic, I don’t look like someone to sell a T-shirt to, let me assure you.

And then we walked into the gym.

To say we were a little surprised would be an understatement. A regulation size boxing ring sat dead in the middle of a very, very, VERY large hall/Basketball Court/Freezer. On either side were bleechers with a handful of slightly frozen mothers, fathers, siblings, girl/boyfriends, and I’m sure, at least 3 adoring fans… but I doubt more than that. Gary, Takedowns manager was in the middle of the ring as ref for the juniors. He was also, as we later discovered, the coach for the Take Down Guys. Edgar (our mate) joined us on our cold bench and shared our general chilly discomfort.

The fighting was ok. There were one or two odd results that had us wondering if we were actually sitting too far to really see what was happening. All 3 of the fights where Take Down fighters were fighting, resulted in warnings to our fighters for trying to pickup and drop their opponent (this is an acceptable and points scoring technique in Muay Thai, NOT EVER! EVER! EVER! done in Kickboxing) We on a few occasions commented to each other that we wondered exactly what Gary was saying to the guys, especially after one of our fighters had points deducted after being warned 3 times not to throw his opponent to the ground ……….. and promptly came out after a break and pep talk and tossed his opponent over the ropes and out the ring.

In between all this, Eugene and Edgar went to go find food. Now you have to understand, Edgar can eat toxic waste and I can just about eat toxic waste and be ok. Eugene has a more delicate constitution. When the boys came back with Edgar clutching a hotdog with gooey red onions in tomato sauce (odd cause they didn’t add onions….) that even I wouldn’t touch, Eugene and I decided to rather starve. I won’t even bother trying to regale the story of their asking the women behind the counter if someone was serving, but rather just say that while fighters aren't generally considered the brightest of them all, she may them look like rocket scientists…. so to speak!

Around half past 5 everyone packed up, and started to leave.

Now, I don’t mean to…………yeah, never mind, I DO mean to sound ungracious. I paid R60, the full day rate for roughly 2 hours of ok kickboxing. I get that I wasn’t professional fights, I get that the association isn’t well supported (oh LORD do I understand that) but SERIOUSLY. We effectively paid R120 for 2 hours….. now, in my book that’s just not on. Could the bloke at the door not give us a break and just have charged us R30 each, or at least warned us that it was going to finish early.

WPKA needs to seriously think of doing something more interesting to get peoples interest because I’m not going to another one of these. You have our R120, put it towards something nice for yourselves……….. and enjoy it, cause you not getting more from me.