Home / Entertaining  / #TashaTests a special winter feast

#TashaTests a special winter feast

Do you have a special occasion coming up or would you just like to treat your family to a nice feast? Instead of going to a restaurant and paying thousands of rand for a meal, you could make a 3-course feast in the comfort of your own home. All the recipes for these 3 delicious courses come from the book, Beginners step-by-step, the perfect guide for new cooks.


Tomato soup

Roasted Chicken with Rice and Roasted Vegetables

Mini apple crumbles

Tomato soup: serves 4Beetroot and tomatoes


2tbsp olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

400g canned peeled plum tomatoes

300ml chicken stock or vegetable stock

1tbsp tomato purée

1tsp hot chilli sauce

Handful of fresh basil leaves

Salt and pepper


Start by heating the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, then add the onion and fry for 4 to 5 minutes, stirring until it is soft.

Add the tomatoes with the juice in the can, and then add the stock, tomato purée, chilli sauce and half the basil leaves.

Purée the mixture with a hand-held blender until smooth, then transfer to the pan.

Stir the soup over medium heat until just boiling, and then add salt and pepper to taste.

Roasted Chicken with rice and roasted vegetables: serves 4roast chicken resize


1 chicken, weighing at least 2.25kg

55g butter, softened

2tbsp chopped fresh lemon

Thyme, plus extra springs to garnish

1 lemon, cut into quarters

125ml white wine, plus extra if needed

Salt and pepper


Preheat the oven to 220ºC and place the chicken in a roasting pan.

Mix the butter and thyme in a bowl and add salt and pepper to taste and then use this to butter the chicken.

Place the lemon inside the cavity, then pour the wine over the chicken and roast in the preheated oven for 15 minutes.

Reduce the temperature to 190ºC and roast, basting frequently for a further 1 ¾ hours.

Check if the chicken is cooked through by piercing a thin skewer in between the drumstick and the thigh. Any juices should be piping hot and clear, and there should be no traces of red or pink. If you are still not sure if it’s cooked through, gently pull the leg away from the body – there should be no traces of pinkness or blood.

When you are sure the chicken is cooked, transfer it to a warmed platter and then cover with foil and allow to rest for 10 minutes.

Simmer your roasting pan juices gently over a low heat until it has reduced and is thick and glossy. Season to taste with salt and pepper and leave it to use later.

To carve your chicken, place on a clean chopping board. Use a carving knife and fork to cut between the wings and the side of the breast. Remove the wings and cut slices in the breast, cut the legs from the body and then cut through the joint to make drumstick and thigh portions.

Serve with the roasting pan juices and garnish with thyme sprigs.

Ingredients for roasted vegetablescarrots in veggie garden resize

3 parsnips cut into 5cm chunks

4 baby turnips cut into quarters

3 carrots cut into 5cm chunks

450g butternut squash cut into 5cm chunks

450g sweet potatoes cut into 5cm chunks

2 garlic cloves finely chopped

2tbsp chopped fresh rosemary, plus extra for garnish

2tbsp chopped fresh thyme, plus extra for garnish

2tsp chopped fresh sage, plus extra for garnish

3tbsp olive oil

Salt and pepper


Start by preheating the oven to 220ºC. Place all the vegetables in a single layer on a roasting pan.

Scatter the garlic and herbs over the vegetables, and then pour over the oil and season well with salt and pepper.

Toss all the ingredients together until they are well mixed and coated with the oil (if you have time you can leave them to marinate to allow the flavours to be absorbed).

Roast the vegetables at the top of the preheated oven for 50 to 60 minutes until they are cooked and nicely browned. Turn the vegetables over halfway through the cooking time.

Serve with a handful of the fresh herbs you kept for garnish and add salt and pepper to taste.

Ingredients for rice

2 cups of rice

2tsp of Robertson’s Spice for Rice



Boil water and add salt, then pour in your rice, add the spices.

Stir the rice once with a wooden spoon to separate (don’t over stir; this will cause your rice to get sticky).

Once rice is almost cooked, rinse with cold water until the water is clear leave some water and let the rice cook until dry and serve.

Mini apple crumbles: serves 4apple crisp resize


2 large apples peeled, cored and chopped

3tbsp maple syrup

Juice of ½ a lemon

½tsp ground All Spice

55g unsalted butter

100g porridge oats

40g light muscovado sugar


Preheat the oven to 220ºC; place a baking sheet in the oven to heat. Place the apples in a saucepan and add the maple syrup, lemon juice and All Spice and mix.

Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to medium, cover the pan and cook for 5 minutes, or until almost tender.

Meanwhile, melt your butter in a separate saucepan, then remove from the heat and stir in the oats and sugar.

Divide the apples into four 200ml ovenproof dishes. Sprinkle over the oats mixture, place on the baking sheet in the preheated oven and bake for 10 minutes, until lightly browned and bubbling and serve.


Words: Natassha Burrell


Mariette Steynberg is a qualified economist with a post-graduate diploma in financial planning. She has enjoyed working on holistic financial plans for clients in various stages of life, as well as a development economist assessing the socioeconomic impacts of new developments. When she is not working, Mariette enjoys parenting her quirky, delightful toddler girl. Cloth diapering, Eskimo kisses and the importance of reading to your child are all causes close to her heart. Mariette is passionate about financial education and hopes to use the experience she has gained to share knowledge with HomeTimes’ readership. Her goal is to provide information that is implementable by everyone.

Review overview