Scotch eggs, a roadtrip picnic, the Magical Tankwa Tented camp, a wedding and so much more…

A road trip to the Tankwa Karoo and the Magical Tankwa Tented camp will not be complete without something profound like “scotch eggs” and a picnic breakfast on the flat Tankwa “vlakte”……

I’ve been wanting to visit the Tankwa Tented Camp for a couple of years, and grabbed the opportunity for a quick 24 hour in and out to take venue pics for our host at the Tankwa Tented Camp, Henk van Niekerk, after a very late night invite one Friday evening, over a pizza, at their restaurant Bodemloos Kombuis in Elgin.

The Tankwa Tented Camp is situated 150 km from Ceres towards Calvinia…. a very long tyre eating gravel road.

Many stops along the way...

Many stops along the way…

For the Scotch Eggs you will need:
Desired amount of eggs, small size, room temperature
1.5 flavoured pork sausages (bangers) per egg
2 raw eggs mixed with salt and pepper
fine bread crumbs
2 – 3 cups of canola or sunflower oil

Click on this link for a printable recipe cardScotch Eggs ………. RECIPE CARD

The eggs – add the room temperature eggs to the water and bring to the boil, boil for 3 minutes from when the water start to boil. Crack the shell and rest in cold water for a couple of minutes. (I prefer to use the oldest eggs in my fridge as they peel easier)

Peel the eggs, you want them as soft as possible. Dry the peeled eggs, this will help the meat stick onto them.

Flatten the meatball in your hand...

Flatten the meatball in your hand…

Push the pork meat out of the sausages and shape into meatballs, use the meat of 1.5 sausages per meatball. Press the meatball flat in the palm of your hand and put the dry cooked egg on top of the flat meatball.

It is important to use flavourful sausages, I use Oak Valley Pork Sausages with peppadews and rosemary. You can also add capers ect to normal pork bangers to add to the flavour.

Wrap the egg in the sausage meatball

Wrap the egg in the sausage meatball

Close your hand and shape the meatball around the egg, don’t panic, the sausage meat will feel sticky, don’t stress, work with both hands and keep on pressing the meat around the egg, it will come together at the end…

Keep on working the meat to cover the egg..

Keep on working the meat to cover the egg..

Carefully place the meat covered egg on a plate, prepare all the eggs. Brush the eggs with the beaten raw egg, brush both sides, work carefully. Roll the eggs in fine breadcrumbs and let them rest in the fridge.

Brush the meatball covered eggs with beaten egg.

Brush the meatball covered eggs with beaten egg.

I prefer to rest the prepared eggs in the fridge until just before we leave the house, these eggs I fried while we packed the car at 4 in the morning.

NO 7. tankwa scotch eggs.jpg

Use a wok if you have one, it will use less oil and works well, the eggs should be covered halfway with oil. Slowly fry the crumbed eggs as you want the meat to cook and the crumbs not to turn too brown.

Lovely light brown scotch eggs...

Lovely light brown scotch eggs…

I drained the excess oil and transported the freshly fried scotch eggs wrapped in foil. Ready of our very early morning breakfast in the Tankwa Vlakte…. It was COLD, luckily we had steaming mugs of coffee to warm our hands…

Our Tankwa picnic table..

Our Tankwa picnic table..

Serve the Scotch Eggs cut in half, with course salt and black pepper, and don’t forget the tin mugs of steaming coffee to warm your hands.

Me and my photo buddy, Evelyn Rust, always game for lots of adventure

Me and my photo buddy, Evelyn Rust, always game for lots of adventure

After breakfast we stopped at the Tankwa Padstal, (a small café between nowhere and nothing). You have to stop here, it is a real treasure chest.

Thanks for the Pic Evie...

Thanks for the Pic Evie…

Tankwa Padstal décor...

Tankwa Padstal décor…

Our destination, THE TANKWA TENTED CAMP, in the Stonehenge Nature Reserve. With an annual rainfall of +/- 80 mm it’s one of the driest areas in South Africa.

Fellow road users.. locals on their way to the Tankwa Padstal for their weekly shopping

Fellow road users.. locals on their way to the Tankwa Padstal for their weekly shopping

The Tankwa Karoo is BEAUTIFUL no picture can really do it justice, it is covered with black stones as far as the eye can see…. nearly pre-historic…

Nearly there..

Nearly there..

After 150 km’s from Ceres, turn right….

The wedding venue at the Tankwa Tented Camp

The wedding venue at the Tankwa Tented Camp

We were invited to take a couple of pics for Henk of the “wedding venue” at the Tankwa Tented Camp, little did we know what we will find in this barren piece of land… it was beautiful, …. dreamlike and unreal…

What a VENUE...

What a VENUE…

Surprises for the guests...

Surprises for the guests…

This venue is magical, different as can be and stunningly beautiful….

We had a wonderful evening, running around in the dark taking pics for Henk and Maryke….

Lazy bones Evelyn... sleeping on the "veranda" under the stars and waking up to the smell of coffee...

Lazy bones Evelyn… sleeping on the “veranda” under the stars and waking up to the smell of coffee…

And then… Henk surprised us with a sneak peak at this years Africa Burn statues…. just +/- 3 km from the camp….

No words can describe the hugeness of this wooden man…

An early morning surprise visit to the Africa Burn site..

An early morning surprise visit to the Africa Burn site..

Thanks to Henk and Maryke for giving us a sneak peak into this new wonderful wedding venue… we liked our 24 hours so much that we’ve decided to book a full weekend in two weeks time…..

So off we go again, I cannot wait…

NO 19. tankwa scotch eggs.jpg

And to the 3 TANKWA girls joining me next weekend, we are going to have a ball…. Ann I expect scotch eggs with herbs…

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Pressed Chocolate Ganache cake with raspberries…… and Elvis Blue….

Summer concerts at The Paul Cluver Amphitheatre….. picnic….. Elvis Blue…..

Arrive early...

Arrive early…

The gates open at 17:00, we usually arrive at 5 to make sure we get a good spot. Then picnic till 19:00 and a supercool summer concert from 19:00 – 21:00….

No 8. elvis b

Bring your own picnic, or buy sushi or pizzas there….. buy wine and glasses from the Paul Cluver drinks stand at the concert….

The open air amphitheatre...

The open air amphitheatre…

I’ve decided to make this very visual and ultra yummy “pressed” chocolate cake with ganache for the picnic, and added some chocolate dipped strawberries and white chocolate coated fresh cherries.

I did not “capture” the baking of the cake, but this is a REALLLLLY easy recipe, on lazy days I don’t even take out the electric mixer,…. just mix it by hand….

FOR THE RECIPE CARD CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW>>>>
Flat pressed Chocolate Cake and Elvis Blue………. RECIPE CARD

Picnic prep...

Picnic prep…

"pressing" the warm cake flatter...

“pressing” the warm cake flatter…

“Pressed” chocolate cake, once cooked, you press down onto the warm cake with a baking tray. Put 2 or 3 plates on top of the tray for extra pressure and let it cool… this will create a dense gooooey “flat” cake, nearly like a brownie that can easily be cut into blocks, +/- 4cm by 4cm…..

The FINALE......

The FINALE……

These cake blocks are very VISUAL, you can also use fresh strawberries or fresh cherries…

PRESENTATION....

PRESENTATION….

Me and Evie... stocking up on some liquid refreshments..

Me and Evie… stocking up on some liquid refreshments..

No 25. elvis b

What fun we've had... picnic... and running around taking hundreds of pictures...

What fun we’ve had… picnic… and running around taking hundreds of pictures…

The Concert.... and ELVIS BLUE...

The Concert…. and ELVIS BLUE…

The "girls"....having a blast...

The “girls”….having a ball…

The beautiful amphitheatre at night...

The beautiful amphitheatre at night…

And the older "girls" ...... also had lottttts of fun....

And the older “girls” …… also had lottttts of fun….

And the "litttttle" girls.... did not want to bath for a couple of nights...

And the “litttttle” girls…. did not want to bath for a couple of nights…

Thanks to The Paul Cluver Amphitheatre for yet another super stunning summer concert….. I cannot wait for the next one….

Picture perfect summer picnic at the HOPE 2012 concert in aid of the Thembalitsha Foundation

IN AID OFF

When I think back to the HOPE 2012 concert, I think of PERFECTION…. the evening turned into a peach, every little detail from parking our car, the taxi’s that transported us to the Country Club, the friends who joined us drinking glasses filled with pink Rose, to the most beautiful sunset I’ve ever experienced and then I have not even talked about the Parletones, Watershed, Gian Groen and my picnic jars and lots lots more, and let me end by saying when Emma (7) wanted her Rooibos Tea at 11:15, I walked hand in hand with her and found the most amasing kiosk which made her a cup of tea….

The HOPE 2012 concert was in aid of The Thembalitsha Foundation, Thembalithsa is the Xhosa word for NEW HOPE and they aim to bring and restore hope to the desperate and needy people of South Africa, here in our Valley. Developing them to a point of self-reliance through the provision of healthcare, education and training….

Let me start with a couple of pics I took some months ago of what they do….

Visiting the needy at home...

Visiting the needy at home…

Home visits...

Home visits…

Caring for the sick at Thembacare..

Caring for the sick at Thembacare..

Now back to the concert….

Our spot...

Our spot…

Thanks Elzaan for keeping a spot for us, centre stage…

Shannon and Nicole who returned for her 30 day "trek throught the wild" on a school outing..

Shannon and Nicole who returned for her 30 day “trek throught the wild” on a school outing..

Now for the best pic of the night… Nicole went on “trek” walking, kayaking and cycling for 30 days, … she left as a young girl and returned a young women…. you are soooo beautiful Nicole…

Nicole, need I say more.

Nicole, need I say more.

Nina, Abby and Bella   .... friends having fun...

Nina, Abby and Bella …. friends having fun…

Little Emma and Lea..

Little Emma and Lea..

THE FOOD- CHILLI PRAWN JARS WITH PINKISH MAYO..

And now for the picnic snacks, lets start with the Cucumber avo chilli prawn jars with pinkish mayo…

Cucumber avo chilli prawn pots with pinkish mayo...

Cucumber avo chilli prawn pots with pinkish mayo…

You will need:
Cubed cucumber
Cubed firm but soft avo
Devained and peeled prawns
Chilli flakes
Butter and Olive oil
Mayo and a squirt of tomato sauce

Layer the cubed cucumber and cubed avo in the jars. Flash fry the prawns in a little bit of butter and olive oil, add chilli flakes and season well. Cool. Make the dressing by mixing 1 cup of mayonaise with a couple of squirts tomato sauce…

Click on the link below for a printable PDF RECIPECARD..
Chilli prawn and avo jars with pinkish mayo RECIPE CARD

No 12. Hope

Trading Prawn jars for Yummy Langbaken cheese... with Amanda

Trading Prawn jars for Yummy Langbaken cheese… with Amanda

TENDER PESTO AND YOGHURT CHICKEN SATES…..

If I need to list my 5 most used recipes, this one will feature on that list, I make it at least once every two weeks…. not on the stick but cut the chicken pieces in half after frying and dipping and then you stir the luke warm soft chicken into egg noodles, including the remaining yoghurt and pesto mix…. soft tender chicken with a hint of pesto… topped with grated parmesan and roasted pine nuts… lets return to the picnic….

The process... easy and really worth a try.

The process… easy and really worth a try.

You will need:
8 Elgin Freerange chicken fillets
1 small tub of bulgarian or greek yoghurt
2 heaped teaspoons pesto
1 cup flour
chicken spice

Slice the chicken fillets in half lenghways, and in half again (refer to picture above). Spice well with chicken spice, salt and pepper and roll the mini fillets into the flour. Pack the floured chicken fillets in one layer, if you stack them on top of each other they will become soggy. Mix the yoghurt, about 250 ml or a small tub with the pesto, don’t use more than 2 teaspoons of Pesto as you don’t want the pesto to be overpowering, the yoghurt needs to have a light green colour. Flash fry the fillets in a little bit of canola oil, secret no 1….. FLASH FRY, they must be just cooked but brown, and make sure the pan is hot before you start. Secret no 2…… remove the cooked fillets (the flour should have disappeared and crisped up the fillet) and take them from the pan with a tongue and dip them one by one straight into the bowl of pesto yoghurt, first the one side, then the other side and place on a flat plate to rest…. all in one movement, the very hot crisped cooked flour on the chicken will absorb the cool yoghurt and I am not sure WHAT happens but it turns the chicken into these tender soft juice little bites… so hot oil, don’t overcook, immediately dip into yoghurt and let rest…..

Once slightly cooled skewer them onto a medium length sosatie stick and cover…. ready for the picnic…. can be served at room temperature or warm…

Print on the recipe card for a printable PDF recipe card:
Tender Pesto and Yoghurt chiken sates RECIPE CARD

Sharing with friends...

Sharing with friends…

Nina and Abby, what a carefree age....

Nina and Abby, what a carefree age….

Amber, Emma and Rosie... fun fun fun...

Amber, Emma and Rosie… fun fun fun…

AND NOW, FOR THE MINI MILKTARTS….

Mom and daughter having fun...

Mom and daughter having fun…

These little milktarts are soooo easy I will most definately make them again for a picnic… they look great and taste even better, I had about 5 friends and little Danny asking for more…. but what a pity there were none left… Danny, now your mom can make them for you…

I am not going to add the recipe here but will insert the recipe card….
Easy mini milktarts… RECIPE CARD

Only the filo needs to bake for 10 min's....

Only the filo needs to bake for 10 min’s….

Little Danny, I promise that next time I will make a double batch…

No 38b. Hope

LET THE CONCERT START !!!

No 41. Hope

What a stage Emily organised!!! WELL DONE...

What a stage Emily organised!!! WELL DONE…

Emma having fun

Emma having fun

I think a 7 year old can only handle that much and at 11:15 she demanded Rooibos Tea….

Jayyyy we found some tea...

Jayyyy we found some tea…

Passed out under the picnic blanket, and resting for our BIG race of tomorrow morning...

Passed out under the picnic blanket, and resting for our BIG race of tomorrow morning…

Not part of this blog, but let me show you the race Mom and daughter did early the next morning…

Emma and Lara, the "lappoppe" at the Jolly Jester triathlon..

Emma and Lara, the “lappoppe” at the Jolly Jester triathlon..

Tying up the pink hair before our dam crossing...

Tying up the pink hair before our dam crossing…

Did I say this was an adventure race, me and Emma decending the very steep dam wall...

Did I say this was an adventure race, me and Emma decending the very steep dam wall…

The end... well done girls we might have come last, but you've completed the 3 km trail run, 12 km MTB cycle and dam crossing...

The end… well done girls we might have come last, but you’ve completed the 3 km trail run, 12 km MTB cycle and dam crossing…

WHAT a weekend, it started with our Christmas Party at Bodemloos Kombuis, where I’ve had the most devine sweet potato bake, (on the blog in a couple of days), then prepping for the Hope 2012 concert Saturday night, and Sunday morning the Jolly Jester triathlon… I think I need a couple of hours sleep….

Well done if you’ve managed to read through this blog post, it is a bit long, sorry, but what a fun filled evening for a GREAT cause….

Cannot wait for next year EMILY HOUSE!!!