Cooking, Rugby and Departures

Who would have thought that my wonderful birthday prize of a Cape Malay cooking course with the enchanting Cass Abrahams would be a lot more than a Babotie (which is a delicious quintessentially Cape dish of mince and spices covered in a savoury custard)…. in fact it was like I walked into someone’s life as a witness to their story… her daughter got married on Sunday and is soon to be spirited away with her new partner and her three-old grandson to Bristol, and Cass’ son returned to England while I was there and watching the heartache of a mother farewelling her son was a little overwhelming – the story of South African migration has touched all colours and creeds… her delightful husband is part of the Western Province Rugby administration and we spoke about my dad who he remembered as a front-rower from Villagers – I felt quite teary hearing the names of men I remember from some distant past of my dad’s rugby-life… and of course in case there weren’t enough threads, Cass had worked with my friend’s late dad on creating an aloe chutney … so in amongst these stories… I also cooked in this grand dame’s kitchen – Babotie, Butter Chicken bathed in cumin and coriander, a fish marinated in freshly ground spices and then soaked in lemon, and a noodle and sago dessert that had the hallmarks of comfort food swaddled in kassia and cardamon… a cherished day today 🙂

5 thoughts on “Cooking, Rugby and Departures

  1. So I am googling Cass as I need to interview her and look what I find….Such a lovely piece and what beautiful writing Merle. Why on earth did I not see you when you were here and when I was there? Robyn

    • Thank you Robyn… I so loved Cass and Cape Town. I don’t have an answer to that – I had a cottage nestled below the mountain and I think one more day and I wouldn’t have returned to Oz…

      • and sometimes i felt like that in Oz… Strange days indeed. Your blog is wonderful. Cass wants to see your piece – I am going to send her the link. What a woman. Love to you and my darling friend, Ilana.

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