Home All Things Food Summer dishes to tickle your taste buds

Summer dishes to tickle your taste buds

Caramel roasted peaches, herbed lamb, savoury potato pizza – this summer, we’re heading outdoors to feast … healthily!


Caramel roast peach and prosciutto salad

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Salads that are a complete meal are such a perfect warm weather lunchtime treat. This salad offers juicy subtle sweetness in the form of roasted peaches dusted with the new Tastebud Caramel spice. Umami richness appears care of thin slices of prosciutto. Add crunchy green leaves and herbs, pops of festive red pomegranate and a light vinaigrette and it’s our idea of happy on a plate. You can make the roasted caramel peaches under your grill, but why not take it outside to the braai grid? It’s summer after all!

You’ll need:

4 peaches, apricots or nectarines, halved and stones removed; Cape Herb & Spice Tastebud Caramel spice; 2 Tblsps melted butter; a packet of prosciutto; selection of green leaves and herbs; pomegranate rubies; 2 Tblsps olive oil; 2 Tblsps neutral vegetable oil like avocado or canola; 2 Tblsps red wine vinegar; half Tblsp pomegranate molasses (optional); pinch of salt and pepper

To make:

Paint fruit with melted butter, dust liberally with Caramel spice and place under a hot grill or cut side down on a braai grid until caramelised.

To make the vinaigrette, whisk oil, vinegar and pomegranate molasses together, add a generous pinch of salt and freshly ground pepper. Dress the leaves and plate up with the warm peaches and prosciutto. Serves four.

Herbed lamb ribs

Small lamb ribs are always a finger-licking winner, especially when done on the braai. Use Tastebud Herbed spice blend as a rub – packed with thyme, rosemary, basil, marjoram, coriander, ginger and loads of other good things, it’ll up your rib game to sensational. Serve with braai-blistered vine tomatoes and lemons.

You’ll need:

800g lamb ribs; Tastebud Herbed spice blend; 3 Tblsps tomato sauce; 1 Tblsp lemon juice; 1 Tblsp runny honey

To make:

Dust lamb ribs with spice blend and set aside for 30 to 60 minutes. Brush ribs lightly with olive oil and place on a hot braai or under the grill element of your oven. Turn often and cook until done to your liking. Mix together tomato sauce, lemon juice, honey and half a tsp of the Herbed spice blend and generously paint ribs for the final 15 minutes of cooking. (If you do it earlier, the basting sauce will burn.) Serve right away.

Serves two.

Seeded pita chips with baked Camembert and honey-roasted grapes

Every cook should have a few no-fail recipes they can turn to for quick snackie things to feed unexpected guests. These seeded pita chips with baked Camembert and honey-roasted grapes is one of them! Prep is all of five minutes and your oven does the rest in under 15. More time with friends, less time in the kitchen – just the way summer entertaining should be.

You’ll need:

1 Camembert; 1 clove garlic (peeled and sliced into slivers); 1 sprig thyme; 1 large bunch red grapes; 2 Tblsps honey; one packet pita breads

To make:

Preheat oven to 180 ° Celsius. Place Camembert in a round ovenproof bowl that just fits the cheese. Make tiny cuts in the cheese and stuff in garlic slivers and thyme leaves. Cut the pita breads into triangles, paint very lightly with olive oil and dust with Tastebud Seeded spice blend. Place on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Place grapes on another lined baking tray. Melt the honey by microwaving it for 20 seconds and pour over the grapes. Place the bowl with Camembert on the tray with the grapes. Place both trays in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes until the pita is toasted, the grapes roasted and the Camembert oozing. (The grapes and Camembert will take the same amount of time, but keep an eye on the pita chips as they may need to be removed a few minutes earlier.) Serve right away.

Savoury potato pizza with rocket and pecorino

Potato pizza? You’ve got to be kidding! Actually we’re not. It’s a real thing and Romans have been savouring it for ages. Of course they call it pizza con le patate, which admittedly sounds a lot more impressive than potato pizza. There is no tomato base and zero cheese, so it’s kinder to the waistline and your vegan friends can come to dinner.

You’ll need:

For the pizza dough … 400g bread flour; 100g semolina; 1 packet (10g) instant yeast; 1/4 tsp salt; 260ml lukewarm water; 40ml milk; 1 tsp honey

For the topping … 1kg baby potatoes (sliced as thinly as possible using a mandolin); 3 sprigs fresh rosemary; garlic-flavoured olive oil; Cape Herb & Spice Savoury spice

To make:

Mix the flour, semolina, yeast and salt. Gradually add the water and mix. Add the milk and honey to the last bit of water and add to the dough. Knead for 12 minutes. Put the dough, brushed with olive oil, in a large clean bowl, cover with cling film and a tea towel and put in a nice warm spot for an hour to an hour and a half until the dough has doubled in size.

Knock it back to remove all the air, cut into 4 equal pieces and shape into balls.

While the bread proves, parboil the potatoes in plenty of salted water until just tender – it takes mere minutes. Drain, dry and toss with a generous glug of olive oil so everything is well coated.

To assemble the potato pizza, roll out dough on a sheet of non-stick baking paper. Brush with garlic-flavoured oil.

Pack with potatoes, dust with Tastebud Savoury spice and sprinkle generously with rosemary leaves. Grind over black pepper and give it a final tiny splash of olive oil. Place the pizza with the baking paper (this makes it so much easier to handle!) on a preheated non-stick baking tray or a hot pizza stone and bake at 200 ° Celsius for 10 to 15 minutes until done.

Drizzle a bit of lemon juice and olive oil over the rocket, give it a grinding of black pepper and pile onto the potato pizza along with a few shaving of Parmesan or pecorino (not for the vegans!) Tuck in right away while it’s warm. This recipe makes 4 medium potato pizzas.

Zesty prawn and zucchini pasta

Eating light and bright is always a good idea, but in summer we really crave it. It doesn’t come much faster or healthier than this prawn and zucchini pasta – which is on the table in under 15 minutes. The Tastebud Zesty spice has intensely citrus notes – the perfect foil for the richness of prawns and the slight earthiness of zucchini. Add parsley and basil for extra freshness and tuck in knowing it’s not just good, but good for you too.

You’ll need:

16-20 prawns (deveined and peeled); a fat clove garlic (minced); extra virgin olive oil; 800g zucchini ribbons; Cape Herb & Spice Tastebud Zesty spice, bunch of flatleaf parsley (leaves only, roughly chopped); tiny basil leaves for garnish

To make:

Heat a generous glug of olive oil in a large non-stick frying pan. Add the garlic and prawns and stir-fry until cooked through. Remove the prawns. Add another glug of olive oil to the pan if necessary. Fry the zucchini ribbons over high heat until just done – it takes mere seconds, you want it al dente not mushy. Dust the zucchini with Tastebud Zesty spice, add parsley and the prawns. Toss through to ensure everything is coated with the spice.

Garnish with teeny basil leaves and serve right away.

Serves four as a light meal.


Self-saucing umami roast chicken

When it comes to our taste buds there’s sweet, salty, sour and bitter… and then there’s our favourite … the fifth taste. Umami. Umami means ‘pleasant savoury taste’ in Japanese. It’s that indescribable savoury yumminess one finds in everything from rich beef stock broths to aged Parmesan cheese. This dish is all umami deliciousness.

You’ll need:

3 Tblsps butter; Cape Herb & Spice Tastebud Umami; 1 free-range chicken; 4 large leeks; 1 garlic bulb; 3 large carrots; olive oil; 1 cup good quality chicken stock

To make:

Mix butter with 2 tsps Umami spice. Use your fingers to gently separate the skin on the chicken breast from the flesh and push the spiced butter under the skin. Spread it out evenly so the entire breast is covered in butter. This is not essential, but is a clever trick to keep the breast – the driest part of a chicken – nicely moist.

Peel and quarter the carrots. Slice garlic bulb in half widthwise. Remove green parts of the leeks, slice in half lengthways and rinse well under running water to remove hidden grit.

Place leeks, garlic and carrots in a roasting tray. Place the chicken on top of the vegetables, lightly drizzle the bird with olive oil and dust with Umami spice mix. Pour the chicken stock in the roasting tray and place, uncovered, in an oven preheated to 200 ° Celsius. Roast until the chicken is cooked through but still moist. The time it takes depends on the size of the chicken. Test it after an hour by stabbing the fold of the thigh with a sharp knife. If the juices that run out are clear, the chicken is ready. If the juices are slightly pink, give it another bit of oven love. Pour off the cooking jus that formed in the roasting tray and serve with the chicken, fluffy mash and a green salad for a seriously no-work umami-yummy dinner.

Spicy shakshuka

Shakshuka is one of those marvellously versatile dishes that can be a class-act breakfast, a quick lunch or a satisfying dinner. High in protein, low in fat and packed with seriously good-for-you vitamins and lycopene (thanks to all that tomato), if you’ve never made shakshuka before, now’s the time to try. It couldn’t be easier. You could make one large family-style dish or, for something a touch more elegant, individual shakshuka dishes. Dress it with a few peppery wild rocket leaves, a dollop of crème fraiche or yoghurt and a sliver of prosciutto and you have yourself a complete meal-in-a-bowl in next to no time.

You’ll need:

1 onion (finely chopped); 1 yellow pepper (deseeded and chopped into small blocks); 1 fat clove garlic (minced); 1 Tblsp tomato paste; olive oil, for frying; 1 tin chopped tomatoes; 3 tsps Tastebud Spicy blend; 1 Tblsps sugar; 4 large free-range eggs; 4 slices prosciutto; wild rocket; crème fraiche or full fat plain yoghurt

To make:

Fry onions and yellow pepper over low heat with 2 Tblsps olive oil until soft. Add garlic and fry for another minute, then tomato paste and fry for a few seconds more. Add tin of tomatoes, Tastebud Spicy blend and sugar. Put the lid on the pan and turn heat to its lowest setting. Allow sauce to cook for 10 minutes. (All the ingredients are already cooked at this point, but you need to give the flavours time to mingle and mature.)

Use the back of a spoon to make four indentations in the tomato sauce. Break an egg into each indentation, put on the lid and gently simmer until eggs are done to your liking. If you’re making individual shakshuka dishes, spoon the tomato mix into oven-proof ramekins, add one or two eggs to each dish and bake them in a 180 ° Celsius oven until done to you liking. Top shakshuka with a dollop of crème fraiche or yoghurt, prosciutto and wild rocket and serve with some crusty baguette or ciabatta. Serves two.


There’s a massive, ever-growing health conscious movement worldwide … hooray, we say!

More and more people are looking to eat healthily, searching for ingredients with no artificial flavourants or colourants, no preservatives or added MSG, non GMO … and they very often also want them suitable for vegans, too. Hello Tastebud – the new brilliant range of spices from Cape Herb & Spice – which offers all this, and more! With seven popular flavours to choose from – think Savoury, Seeded, Zesty, Spicy, Herbed, Umami and Caramel – well-flavoured food, be it spicy or sweet, savoury or salty, has never been easier (or tasted this good). You’ll find them at your local stores for around R39.95 each.  Details: www.capeherb.co.za


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