I am writing this post having had a very exciting time travelling around southern Africa. Most exciting was my first ever Safari experience! Seeing the animals in their natural habitat was one of the most exhilarating things I have ever done.
My trip, during the UK’s Summer, was scheduled in the middle of the dry Winter in the area of South Africa at the edge of the Kruger National Park. This period of time is great for wildlife because the trees are bare, making spotting the animals easier. Also, a lack of water means animals are drawn to fewer waterholes, making the predictability of spotting wildlife much more reliable.
I’ll confess, waking at 5am (or soon after), to get ready for a 6am game drive was something of a challenge. Early mornings are very much not my thing! Two cups of tea are required before I become a human being most mornings. However, something changes almost the second you make your first sighting. Suddenly I found myself feeling full of energy and wondering what I might see next.
Safari is an unpredictable and erratic experience. You go out morning and afternoon in the hope of seeing wildlife. Trouble is, they didn’t get the memo. Maybe you’ll see them, maybe you won’t. One day a Hyena den will be full of life, the next… completely deserted. Another night, leopards hunting, the next… no big cats at all. You get the thrill of the chase – but thankfully the only shooting which happens is with a camera.
I hope you like my pictures from my trip. These splendid animals show such personality, I feel. They're almost calling on you to interact with them (not recommended!). With my pictures, I present my monthly collection of food websites (articles and recipes) and other cultural fun for your enjoyment. As ever, I hope you will dig in. Please do let me know if there's anything which particularly gains your attention in the comments below!
Food and drink articles and know how:
Chicken thighs are more flavourful than breast and stand up to marinading and grilling extremely well (they don't get dry and cardboardy). In case you were put off using thighs because of the bones, here's how you de-bone a chicken thigh! https://www.bbc.com/food/techniques/how_to_bone_a_chicken_thigh
Looking for a new cooking inspiration? Kavita (of Kavey Eats) recommends Japan: The Cookbook by Nancy Singleton Hachisu. https://www.kaveyeats.com/2018/07/japan-cookbook-nancy-singleton-hachisu.html
How to pep up supermarket dips without having to make from scratch: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/jun/15/revamp-supermarket-dips-recipes-hummus-taramasalata-ramael-scully
Chinese food often gets an outrageously unfair bad press. It's high time to stop demonising it. http://www.gal-dem.com/stop-demonising-chinese-food/
Aldi's £11 Monsigny Champers named one of the best - a genuine supermarket wine bargain! http://www.goodhousekeeping.co.uk/food/food-news/aldi-champagne-in-best-in-world
Felicity Jones will be playing kick-ass American judge Ruth Bader Ginsberg in a new film. Judge Ginsberg is more colloquially known as The Notorious RBG for her sassy judgments and unique take on the law. Here is a cocktail in her honour. All rise! https://www.quartoknows.com/…/…/ruth-bader-ginsberg-cocktail
Lamb neck stewed with rosemary dumplings, to make the most of new season lamb: https://www.bbc.com/food/recipes/lambstewwithrosemary_90363
My local Turkish restaurant makes a fritter like this with carrot and courgette, served with a garlicky yoghurt dip. Carrot, sweet potato and feta fritters: https://www.deliciousmagazine.co.uk/recipes/carrot-sweet-potato-and-feta-fritters/
Put the ingredients into tin foil, throw into the oven for 30 minutes whilst you cook the rest of your dinner. A low effort side dish to impress: https://www.olivemagazine.com/recipes/chef-recipes/foil-baked-mushrooms/
Lamb mince spiced meatballs with jewelled couscous by Masterchef winner Thomasina Miers: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/jun/08/thomasina-miers-recipe-spiced-lamb-meatballs-jewelled-couscous
Porterhouse steak with preserved lemon gremolata: https://www.splendidtable.org/recipes/playboy-steak-with-preserved-lemon-gremolata
From indulgent potatoes slathered in dressing to a light Pimm's dressed Summer salad, here is a fab collection of 10 super tasty salads: https://www.kaveyeats.com/2018/06/picnic-recipes-salads.html
Cool noodle salad for hot days. From Thug Kitchen, known as much for their great recipes as their colourful language! https://www.thugkitchen.com/sesame_noodles
Yotam Ottolenghi’s picnic recipes: Giant couscous with golden raisins, lemon and almonds, Grilled and marinated sandwich vegetables, Harissa-spiced tuna picnic cake: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/jun/16/yotam-ottolenghi-picnic-recipes
Call The Comet – Johnny Marr
ATOMOS – A Winged Victory For The Sullen
Mogwai - Every Country's Sun
TOTP Big Hits – 1985
TOTP Big Hits – 1986
Please note: as with every monthly Favourites List, all of these items have been selected by me simply because I love them. I do not receive any money, benefits in kind or other incentive for posting these links or recommendations.