My friends over at Posh Galore haven’t featured in this column for a while, but I’m sure they would frown upon the thought of me dredging up a hasbeen old kitchen favourite again, on this dubious occasion the sadly lamented “Avocado Ritz”.
My best meal in a year of good eating happened unexpectedly. And in great company too. The foodie set were all out for a lunch of note in the warm green garden of Kleine Zalze wine estate, where a vast team sweated in the Terroir kitchen while we langoured with bubbly and canapes.
The editors of Posh Galore generally do quite well, and I commend them for their efforts, and we foodie lemmings usually climb on the bandwagon and try using whatever it is in new and unexpected ways in dishes that previously would have managed quite well without the pounded seed of something found growing under a dewy knoll in Zheleznodorozhny and unearthed by a castrated yak. But there’s something they’ve all missed which has potential flavour of the year written all over it. The common, humdrum and very Afrikaans potjie, the three-legged cast-iron pot, is one of the most versatile cooking vessels there is.
I have been slow in coming to smoked paprika. It has been a foodie rave for several years and I really should have listened to the sussed editors of Posh Galore when they told us all that smoked paprika was the new thing, dahlings, and you simply have to try it.
Peruse the annual awards lists of the last 10 years and you’ll find many examples of restaurants that were once just the place to get to, dahlings, their chefs’ names thrown about as if the Gods had come down to save our palates. Then they slip down the lists until, in a year or two, they drop out of the top 10 and are often never heard of again.