For the first time since being a chef, I created my own five course menu, with pallet cleansers between each course while complimenting each finished dish. Being able to cook this menu, single handed for 26 patrons was a dream come true and a proud accomplishment.
Initially I wanted to do the same as always, make an a la carte menu, but after a brainstorming session around good food and wine with loyal friends Wilma and +Len Nowers, they helped me realize that Valentine's day should not be of choices. People want to be taken on a gastronomic adventure of good flavors, good wine,fantastic atmosphere and good service...and at Au'de Hex Boutique Hotel and Restaurant we have all those boxes ticked:-)
My week started off with intense planning, ordering and prepping.
Excitement was in the air.
My best South African/Taiwan friend, +Charl Toua popped round for a braai on the Thursday evening and although the evening got away from me...I was back in the kitchen early Friday morning working hard to get everything ready for Valentine's Day.
I had an early start on Saturday morning and appreciated the beautiful surroundings with a spectacular sunrise.
Sunrise at Au'de Hex
The Hotel was fully booked with couples taking time out to visit our beautiful town and enjoying a romantic weekend break.
It was a busy morning in the kitchen, all 20 hotel guests had to be fed for breakfast and the small matter of 30 patrons for a kitchen tea all while still making last minute sorbets, rolling and folding puff pastry and blending up Tomato soup.
The evening came rushing up and I was dressed, pressed and ready to impress in my Green Au'de Hex Uniform.
All the tables was set and the waiters served all the guests pretty pink pre-drinks.
First course was ready for serving and looked and tasted amazing.
Cold Tomato Soup with a drizzle of basil oil and a Buffalo Mozzarella Toastie
The soup was followed by a Mango Sorbet.
Second course was my absolute favorite, it's colors just stood out on the plate and the amazing combination and balance of flavors made my knees weak.
Chermoula-wrapped Linefish with Tequila-flamed Paw-Paw
The fish course was complemented with a red grape sorbet.
The third course I was excited for the opportunity to play around with Asian flavors and showcase what I have learned and enjoyed eating during my stay in Taiwan.
Ginger Pork dumplings served with a Spicy Peanut Dipping Sauce
We followed up with a Litchi Sorbet, cutting gently through the spiciness of the pork course.
The meat and fourth course was a very French inspired dish and I was very drawn to the name of the dish: Grillé Poussin Breasts, Pâté de foie gras.
Roasted Chicken Breasts, stuffed with duck Liver Pâte, served with Oyster Mushrooms and Lime and Wholegrain Mustard Dressing
Sorbets from left to right: Mango, Grape, Litchi and Gooseberry
Dessert was the final course. I was very impressed with the combinations of the whole dish and how every element complimented each other.
Baby Apple Tartlet served with a slice of Mature Cheddar Cheese and a shot of Laborie Alambic Brandy
A very happy, relieved and proud Chef
Magic Moments 14 February 2015
As I mentioned earlier, this will probably be my cooking highlight for 2015 and I will look back in all my years to come and be proud of how this menu and food looked and tasted.
I want to thank the whole team at Au'de Hex from front of house to my fabulous Kitchen team. A big shout out to manager +Janine Eybers for always being calm and in control.
A very big thank you to our very talented up and coming photographer, Marié Bester for taking all the beautiful pictures showcased in this blog post.
Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoyed the glimpse into the kitchen where I spend most of my waking hours doing what I love.
Lots of cooking Love