Oven baked Baby Hake with Dill and Lemon

Place the fish in an ovenproof dish.

Add the juice of one fresh lemon

A few tablespoons of olive oil

Grind salt and peper over

Add the Dill

Bake in the oven till the fish is soft

Serve with Hollandaise sauce, fried rice and asparagus

Advertisements

Elephant Garlic

2-DSC04629

Elephant Garlic is more closely related to leeks than to true garlic. Both belonging to the lily family and the genus alium.

The bulbs are divided into large cloves, but there may also be smaller side cloves called corns. These may also be used for propagation. So you can have your cake and eat it.

1-DSC04630

You may leave the plant unharvested if you like, they do not easily rot and left alone the plant will grow into a bigger clump over time.

You also have the decorative benifit of the flowers for months and their presence discourages pests.

1-DSC04628

When harvested therey is quite a lot of water in the bulb, so allowing them to try in cool dry conditions may be beneficial.

Temple of the Emerald Buddha

We are in Bangkok, at the Wat Phra Keaw, inside the grand palace complex of the Thai King.

It is the most important temple in Thailand, the King’s temple in a way. Rama XI, the current King is most revered and despite the political problems the country experiences from time to time, he holds on to his status. Be stupid enough to insult him and you will end up in goal in no time!

They have their own alfabet and you try and pronounce Wat Phra Keaw anyway! The sun is HOT in those parts so I just walked down to the main road and then stopped a taxi. The driver watched patiently as I was making faces trying to pronounce my destination and the calmly mentioned his price. Off course all tourists go there so it is not too difficult even if you mispronounce it horribly.

When he dropped me off though he couldn’t help smiling as a stated ‘Wat Phra Keaw’ with the same effort.

Everyone wants to make a buck so just as get out of the taxi, scouts start trying to talk me into taking a city tour in those three wheel scooter taxi things of theirs! The Palace is closed today for an important religious ceremony, rather do a city tour with us. And that is in the worst traffic, enfolded in exhaust fumes and in the terrible heat. What a pleasure, it was difficult to resist the temptation.

Well I made my way past the guys with one long finger nail and miracle of miracles, the Palace is open 😉

Two yakshis guard the entrance to the temple.

The temple houses the  Emerald Buddha. Hy was made in India (as so many things are today as well)  but spent time in Cambodia before arriving in Thailand in the 18th century.

When Ayutthaya (I will do a post on it) was overrun and destoyed by the Burmese the Emerald Buddha was feared lost. It was later found in the North of Thailand in Chang Rai. When lightning struck a temple, the buddha was toppled and an edge chipped off.

Someone had had the foresight to cover the Emerald Buddha with a layer of clay and send it away to the North. People of Chang Rai en Chang Mai (the principalities) still consider themselves a cut above people of the south.

Well the girl from the north I met was a real princess, Isuzu bakkie and all! She fetched my luggage from the (horrible) place I had booked on  Koh Samui and took us to their far more civilized place.

When we arrived to fetch the luggage there was a western tourist (perhaps he’s been there a while) seated on the ground outside (no problem there I do this myself) with a lady of uncertain morals painting his toe nails, oh joy 😉

I had already been attacked by stinging wasps on my way to my room earlier and the smell of old chipboard was the last straw, I was out, prepaid or not.

The huge dustbin filled with water and a sort of a dog bowl on top in the bathroom didn’t help either. Yuk!

Their place was a huge improvement on the dustbin mess and less expensive to boot. Isn’t the world a strange place.

Not that any of this has anything what so ever to do with the Buddha – or perhaps it does 😉 He is made out of Jade, the word Emerald refers to his colour, and only 66 cm tall. Only the king is allowed to touch him and his apparel is changed 4 times a year, to reflect the seasons. He wore a scarf when I was there as it was only 38 degrees and therefor quite cool. If you want to see of  PHOTO click here, it seems only the king is allowed to take photos of him as well..

If I remember correctly The King and I takes place in Thailand. They were never under a colonial power  and was a free country between the French and Dutch (later also English) parts. The king played his cards right and played both sides down the middle to protect the freedom of his own people. Thai means free as far as I know. Perhaps the Kings deserves the regard he is held in.

Did you notice I don’t know anything about the Palace complex? I didn’t have the strength to listen to long stories from a guide so it was rather a quick visit. My photos are just under one and a half hour in total 😉 – no disrespect

Lamb liver

In the Karoo there is a lot of lamb available. In all varieties. Though not everybody’s favourite, lamb liver can be very tasty. If you don’t eat liver, skip this recipe ok 😉

You know the story of the guest who declined the tongue on the grounds that he doesn’t eat something that comes from a cows mouth. The host calls into the kitchen, Evelyn, won’t you please cook the gentleman an egg!

Anyway I’m sure everyone who doesn’t eat liver has left us long ago.

Off course the liver must be fresh and cleaned. If you think it may be bitter, marinate it in milk before cooking.

There is elephant garlic in the garden so I sliced one of the big cloves and fried it with two small chopped onions in enough olive oil.

Slice the lamb liver and fry together with the onion and garlic. Always use bay leaf with liver, so add a few leaves now.

Once you have turned the slices so that they are sealed, grind some salt and black pepper over and add a some thyme, stripped from the stalks and crushed slightly.

Yoghurt (unflavoured naturally – pardon the pun) is excellent for tenderising any meat and as creamy as cream but without the fat so add a few generous spoonfuls.

I had some beer I didn’t like in the fridge so 100ml landed in the frying pan after the yoghurt had had a chance to do it’s thing.

Just because I had some handy, I added a tablespoon of terayaki sauce.

About 3 minutes before you remove the dish from the heat add  2 – 4 tablespoons of chopped parsley.

I cut the slices in smaller bits after they were done (pink inside, do not over cook liver it becomes floury) and added it back into the gravy for another minute. One tablespoon of vinegar finishes the dish nicely just before you turn off the heat.

Remember to remove the bay leaves once the cooking is done, otherwise it becomes bitter.

Wonderful served with fresh bread!

Karoo

I was hanging out the washing this morning here in the Karoo. The wind is quite strong and it was a struggle to keep the washing out of my face.

When I had the last item securely pegged to the line I went back to check on the first one, a cloth which was horisontal in the wind. I didn’t want to have to go and fetch it in the veld.

Well fortunately it was already dry, so I could bring it in 😉

Have you ever experienced the like?

We recently had very good rain as you can see.

It's a trip

%d bloggers like this: