wind storm and South African meal

Tuesday night we got a horrible storm, one of the worst we've had here. We get very high winds here quite frequently, especially this time of year, but that storm was exceptional. It lasted all night and into the early morning. Thunder, lightening, high winds, and heavy rain. I was startled awake at 5 AM when lightening struck near by and we heard the awful, loud, cracking sound.

When the storm started Kevin said to me, "we should put the chainsaw in the truck tomorrow." We had an early appointment at the dentist for me and then had to go to Ottawa in the afternoon for another appointment.

So of course, early morning comes, I finished the chores, and off we rushed (as usual) to the appointment. No saw. Before our first gate, just past our turtle pond, there was a huge Oak branch snapped across the road. No way we could move it without the tractor and the chainsaw. Because of the way it had twisted and broke, there was a large gap between the branch, and the the rest of the tree, so we actually managed to sneak the truck in between the two, so we could still make it to our appointments.

It's always the trees you least expect too, the ones you've been waiting to fall over for years, never seem to fall down in the big storms. 

Our washing machine is dead again. I mentioned we thought it was a water problem the other day, but Kevin replaced a part in the machine today which we thought would solve the problem, but no luck. It still works but not with cold water, unless I fill it up with the hose. So that's what I'll have to do until we figure out what's wrong and fix it.

For dinner tonight, we had the National dish of South Africa, Bobotie. You can read about it here
I found dozens, upon dozens of recipes for this, but mainly I used this recipe I found here
But to my taste. This dish always has raisins in it, but because Kevin cannot eat them, I had to omit them from the Bobotie and the yellow rice.


Ground beef (and lamb if you'd like)
1 finely chopped onion
3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

1/2 tsp Coriander seeds
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp cloves

(I used whole seeds and ground them)

3 tsp curry powder
1 tsp turmeric
2 tbs raisins (if you'd like)
2 tbs apricot jam
Juice of half a lemon
Salt to taste

2 pieces crust less bread, soaked in milk.
2 eggs

1. Cook your onions in oil over medium heat until translucent
2. add your garlic and cook for a couple minutes
3. add the ground meat and brown.
4. when browned, drain the mixture.

5. Add spices to the mixture and cook for about 5 minutes longer.
6. Add your jam and lemon juice, and salt to taste.

7. Using your hands, squeeze the milk out of the bread (keep the milk and set aside)
break the soaked bread up and mix it in with the meat mixture well.

8. Mix 2 eggs with the milk that you used to soak the bread (you need 1 cup of milk)

9. Put the meat mixture in a small baking dish, and pour custard over top.
10. Cooking for 45-50 minutes in a 350 degree F oven, until egg mixture has set and it browned.

Yellow rice

2 3/4 cups basmati rice
2 tbs butter
1 tbs sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon or 1⁄2 cinnamon stick
just under 1 tsp ground turmeric
5 tbsp raisins

I used my rice cooker for this and just mixed the ingredients together. If you are using a pot, put all the ingredients in a large pan with 1 tsp salt and 500ml water, then heat until boiling and the butter has melted.
Stir, cover and leave to simmer for 6 mins. Take off the heat and leave, still covered, for 5 mins. Fluff up and tip into a warm bowl to serve.

Tomorrow we have to get to work on the long list of chores we have to finish before next Friday, when we'll be leaving for our trip to Colorado for Kevin's daughters wedding. We are going to visit a few friends along the way and before we head home we are going to Mesa Verde! I am so excited. Because it's late in the season, a few of the places are closed, but most are open and we will be able to see them. I am so excited, I can hardly wait.

If you want to read more about Mesa Verde National park you can visit the National Parks website at

Hopefully we'll have pictures to share!


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