Archive for September 2nd, 2007

Vetkoek is a name given due to the way you bake it. It’s a “cake” baked in oil. In Afrikaans the “vet” means ‘fat’ and this cake is oily.

This is a fantastic recipe as I made it myself too. Please scroll down for the English translation. In  these pictures you can see what mine looked like from this recipe and the family’s comments: delicious, we want more!

This recipe comes from a South African famous recipe book and it contains only winner recipes.

Vetkoek – definitief die beste resep!


Kookolie vir diep braai
1 Koppie Kookwater
2 Eiers
Knypie Sout
2 Teelepels Bakpoeier
2 Eetlepels Suiker
2 Koppies (500ml ) Koekmeelblom

Sif die koekmeelblom, suiker, bakpoeier en sout saam. Klits die eiers in ‘n aparte mengbak. Klits die kookwater by die eiers: klits goed. Voeg die eiermengsel by die meelmengsel en klop met ‘n houtlepel tot goed gemeng; die beslag is slap.

Skep dessertlepelsvol beslag in matig warm kookolie in ‘n braaipan. Braai die vetkoek totdat die onderkant goudbruin en die bokant vol lugborrels is. Draai om sodat die bokant ook goudbruin kan braai. Plaas die vetkoek op kombuispapier sodat alle oortollige olie daarin kan dreineer. Sit die vetkoek warm voor met botter en heuning of appelkooskonfyt óf met maalvleis. (Die resep afgeskryf uit Huisgenoot Wenresepte)

English recipe.


Oil for deep fry
1 cup of boiled water (I used hot water and not boiled water)
2 eggs
Pinch of salt
2 teaspoons of baking powder ( I used 4!)
2 dessert spoons of sugar (I didn’t add any sugar – it’s healhier)
2 cups (500ml) of Flour

Sift dry ingredients. Whisk the eggs and add the water. Add to the dry ingredients
and mix the batter with a wooden spoon. Drop large spoonsful of batter in warm oil.
Make sure you’re oil is not too hot! Fry both sides well, till it’s golden brown.
Enjoy with a beef mince filling/syrup/honey/jam, whatever taste you like. This recipe produces about 6-10 “vetkoeke”/fat cakes…depending on the size.

On this site you can find a recipe for a bread machine!
Another recipe I’ve found that looks great :


Vetkoek/fat cake

250ml (1cup) cake flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg
125 milk
125 ml oil for frying
Instructions on how to make it
Sift flour, baking powder and salt together. beat egg separately and add to flour. Add milk and mix until smooth heat oil in frying pan and drop a tablespoon of the mixture into oil.
Fry for two to three minutes on one side, then turn and fry for one minute on other side. Serve hot.
Recipe can be found HERE too.
**And…another!! This one is with YEAST and I do like Fat Cake with yeast !
Vetkoek means ‘oil cake, which refers to the method of frying, not baking the bread.
It is a classic South African “bread”. You can have it with a sweet filling or a savoury filling.
Beef mince or syrup, like maple syrup…add some cheese and you have a nice “filling”.
Vetkoek/fat cake
1 kg (2 1/4 pounds) white bread flour
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 packet instant yeast
1 litre lukewarm water (1 quart)
Vegetable oil for deep frying
In a large dish mix flour, sugar, salt and yeast together. Slowly add lukewarm water and stir. Combine until dough pulls away from sides of bowl. Cover with greased kitchen paper, put in warm draft-free place, and allow to double in size. Heat enough vegetable oil for deep frying. Fill another dish with cold water and place next to your vetkoek dough. Wet your hands in cold water before breaking off a piece of dough, rolling it into the shape and size of a tennis ball and carefully lowering it into hot oil. You can easily do five or six vetkoek at a time. Allow to turn golden brown on all sides by frequently turning. Remove from oil and drain on kitchen paper.
This next pie is really something very delicious! My sister used to make it..and I’ve found the recipe here: fruittart.wordpress.com/2008/01/28/daring-little-tart/
Lemon Meringue Pie
Makes one 10-inch (25 cm) pie

For the Crust:

¾ cup (180 mL) cold butter; cut into ½-inch (1.2 cm) pieces
2 cups (475 mL) all-purpose flour
¼ cup (60 mL) granulated sugar
¼ tsp (1.2 mL) salt
⅓ cup (80 mL) ice water

For the Filling:

2 cups (475 mL) water
1 cup (240 mL) granulated sugar
½ cup (120 mL) cornstarch
5 egg yolks, beaten
¼ cup (60 mL) butter
¾ cup (180 mL) fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp (15 mL) lemon zest
1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla extract

For the Meringue:
5 egg whites, room temperature
½ tsp (2.5 mL) cream of tartar
¼ tsp (1.2 mL) salt
½ tsp (2.5 mL) vanilla extract
¾ cup (180 mL) granulated sugar

For the Crust: Make sure all ingredients are as cold as possible. Using a food processor or pastry cutter and a large bowl, combine the butter, flour, sugar and salt. Process or cut in until the mixture resembles coarse meal and begins to clump together. Sprinkle with water, let rest 30 seconds and then either process very briefly or cut in with about 15 strokes of the pastry cutter, just until the dough begins to stick together and come away from the sides of the bowl. Turn onto a lightly floured work surface and press together to form a disk. Wrap in plastic and chill for at least 20 minutes.

Allow the dough to warm slightly to room temperature if it is too hard to roll. On a lightly floured board (or countertop) roll the disk to a thickness of ⅛ inch (.3 cm). Cut a circle about 2 inches (5 cm) larger than the pie plate and transfer the pastry into the plate by folding it in half or by rolling it onto the rolling pin. Turn the pastry under, leaving an edge that hangs over the plate about ½ inch (1.2 cm). Flute decoratively. Chill for 30 minutes.

Preheat oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Line the crust with foil and fill with metal pie weights or dried beans. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Carefully remove the foil and continue baking for 10 to 15 minutes, until golden. Cool completely before filling.

For the Filling: Bring the water to a boil in a large, heavy saucepan. Remove from the heat and let rest 5 minutes. Whisk the sugar and corn-starch together. Add the mixture gradually to the hot water, whisking until completely incorporated.

Return to the heat and cook over medium heat, whisking constantly until the mixture comes to a boil. The mixture will be very thick. Add about 1 cup (240 mL) of the hot mixture to the beaten egg yolks, whisking until smooth. Whisking vigorously, add the warmed yolks to the pot and continue cooking, stirring constantly, until mixture comes to a boil. Remove from the heat and stir in butter until incorporated. Add the lemon juice, zest and vanilla, stirring until combined. Pour into the prepared crust. Cover with plastic wrap to prevent a skin from forming on the surface, and cool to room temperature.

For the Meringue: Preheat the oven to 375ºF (190ºC). Using an electric mixer beat the egg whites with the cream of tartar, salt and vanilla extract until soft peaks form. Add the sugar gradually, beating until it forms stiff, glossy peaks. Pile onto the cooled pie, bringing the meringue all the way over to the edge of the crust to seal it completely. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden. Cool on a rack. Serve within 6 hours to avoid a soggy crust.
Daring Bakers Extra Challenge
Free-Style Lemon Tartlets
Prepare the recipe as above but complete the following steps:
To roll out tartlet dough, slice the dough into 6 pieces. On lightly floured surface, roll each circle of dough into a 5 inch disk. Stack the disks, separated by pieces of plastic wrap, on a plate, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
To bake the dough, position rack in oven to the centre of oven and preheat to 350ºF (180ºC). Place the disks of dough, evenly spaced, on a baking sheet and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until golden brown. Cool completely.
To finish tartlets, first place oven rack in the upper third of the oven and increase heat to 425ºF.
Divide the lemon filling equally among the disks, mounding it in the centre and leaving a 1-inch border all the way around.
Spoon the meringue decoratively over each tartlet, right to the edges, in dramatic swirling peaks. Return tartlets to oven and bake for about 5 minutes, until the meringue is golden brown.

You can make one pie or tartlets (in a tin or free-form)
You can compliment your pie with a sauce. For example, you can serve it with raspberry or white chocolate sauce.
You can use a piping bag to apply the meringue if you like.
Decoration is up to you – lemon zest or fruit are totally acceptable

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Read Full Post »

This is the first entry from this book, as I promised. I will just post very short bits from the book. I hope it inspires more people to get hold of the book and to read it, especially South Africans. It is really a book I treasure and I can’t thank Denis enough (from the chess site) for sending me this book! The way he describes places and the people/events that happened at that time and earlier is very informative….the country was still the “Union of South Africa”….we became a Republic in 1961. This book was published the first time in 1948!

In Search of South Africa….by HV Morton–First Published in 1948.

from the “Introduction”

While I was in the Union of South Africa I was constantly reminded of the classical world, in which illusion I was assisted of the air and the architecture of Sir Herbert Baker. It seemed strange to me, as indeed it still does, that a part of the earth which the Greeks and the people of the Hellenistic world would have adored, and the Romans have found so profitable, should have remained concealed from them.

….Flying to South Africa, which sophisticated friends told me would be boring, turned out to be a sheer delight from beginning to end. ……..I alighted in a country of haunting beauty and found myself among a people whose kindness and warmth of heart are not anywhere exceeded. As I travelled about the country, I learnt a page of history new to me, and one, I might add, which is not too well known in Europe or America. …..My thanks are due to Mr Winston Churchill for permission to print for the first time the text of the letter he left on his bed the night he escaped from prison in Pretoria in December, 1899. This interesting document has been cherished ever since as a family heirloom, and I am grateful to Mrs O E de Souza of Baberton for showing it to me. In a letter authorising its publication, Mr Churchill says, “You are at liberty to contradict the story of my having swum the Apies River.”

Chapter 1

……..I knew, of course, that South Africa had grown up in the course of the last fifty years, but the full extend of this growth, whose most spectacular proof is perhaps Johannesburg, was striking and unexpected. Johannesburg, like the word Klondyke, builds up in the mind a picture of gold rush, bars and tin shacks, a picture that was perfectly true fifty years ago. But I stepped out the next morning into a city which seemed to me to bear some resemblance to a small New York, while at the same time retaining something which reminded me of Kingston, Jamaica.
……….When for the first time you found yourself in a crowd of South Africans, your first impression is that these people look, speak, and dress more as we do in Great Brittain than any other folk. And this is true also of those South Africans of Dutch, French, and German descent who have no wish to be like us in any way, for they belong to the same racial stock and cannot help it. Even their language – Afrikaans – has the same roots as English, and gives one the impression that any student of Chaucer should be able to learn to speak it, or at any rate to read it, in a few weeks.
…….to begin a tour of South Africa in Cape Town, and I went there in the Blue Train…….It was a train of great splendour and finer than any train at present running in Europe, and as fine as the best the United States can boast. It was a train of blue sleeping-coaches and restaurant cars, even each compartment, air-conditioned, as I discovered when I found it possible to raise or lower the temperature by moving a little chromium switch above the bed. ……………….There came a time when, traversing the Hex River Pass, the train became a snake which twisted back upon itself, so that the locomotive was seen puffing valiantly now wat the left-hand window and now at the right. All round were mighty mountains, each cleft and corrie filled with pale blue shadow, the shadows we know on the west coast of Ireland as “Atlantic blue”; and so we came down into a happy land of peach-blossom and grape-vines, where a stream of ice-clear water ran beside the train for a long time. ………Such was my first impression of Cape Town: a city of dignity and beauty seated at the foot of a blue mountain where two oceans meet, and washed by a magic light that should make of men poets, artists, and philosophers.
———–to be continued…………

Read Full Post »

World Chess cup 2007

Kasparov vs Deep Blue chess games.

Click hereto see details about the World Chess Cup…..
And….read more about Khanty-Mansiysk, where it will take place….here and click here to view lovely pictures of the place.

Read Full Post »

Napoleon and chess

View Napoleon’s games here.

The work of a chess player is similar to a blast furnace process: it is continuous and demands a heated passion for chess.
— Alexander Suetin

Read Full Post »

Click on this link…. Chess Tactics…..looks great… try it out…

Chess games of Bobby Fischer…..Click here. He is THE greatest chess champion of all times!

Listen to Bobby himself herewhen he was interviewed in Aug. 2004.

And here in Iceland where he now is —as we all know….

Read Full Post »

Cry my beloved country!


I got this link from Steve’s blog and what can one say…..”Cry my beloved country”….that is what you can say…..CRY!My own family back home had some “experiences” too, recently….so sad…it is on my blog…they were “lucky”, but other people are less lucky….

Read Full Post »

Leone and Pieter live in Aberystwyth and we met them here in London. Leone is a fantastic artist and some of her work can be seen in Embassies in some countries. I took two pictures – bear in mind that I’m not a professional photographer- but I think it is still good enough to admire and to share. The first two pictures are the two which I photographed and I found the others by a search on Yahoo….Links in this post will open in a new window.
We visited them in Wales and you can follow
this link (and go down with the slider) to look at the pictures in Aber and read more about our visit there.



Leone’s art of cows – in Wales



More of Leone’s beautiful art



Read Full Post »