August 6, 2019

A family affair, in memory of Margaret

Let’s celebrate all women this week, perhaps with a pink gin?

When my son mentioned that his micro-brewery and nano-distillery were making small, bespoke ranges of flavoured gin for chefs and restaurants, my ears pricked up. I remember how impressed I was when I saw a house brand of gin at La Colombe last year…

Imagine my delight when my firstborn offered to make his mother her own range of cherry-blossom gin, a meaningful memory of my recent trip to Japan. I decided to dedicate it to my mother, Margaret, who passed away a year ago. She loved pink, all things floral, her daily tipple and most importantly, her family. My sister-in-law, Liz, was at the brewery when this was all under family discussion, and suggested the name “Mother’s Pride” (much more pleasing than Mother’s Ruin?). Natalie, Gourmet Guide brand manager, designed a beautiful label. One of the talented artists in my art class, Sarita, painted cherry blossoms on canvas, had her design printed onto fabric, and before I knew it the 500ml gin bottles were packaged in gorgeous fabric bags.

Last weekend I toasted my mom and all the moms before her. Let’s this week toast all the wonderful women who add value, love and flavour to our lives. I shall be having a sip or two in thanks for the amazing women who constantly support me, but especially for their love in the last year.

If you would like your own personalized bottle or range of gin – cherry, orange or lime blossom, a favourite botanical perhaps – then contact for details. If you would like to purchase Mother’s Pride cherry-blossom gin, email Cheers!



We will be serving Mother’s Pride cherry-blossom gin at our (repeat, due to popular demand) Japanese cookery demo on Saturday 14 September, from 9h30 to 13h00, in Cape Town. For details of this interactive, intimate and fun foodie morning, contact Natalie on  If you cannot make it, gift vouchers are available for the favourite women in your life. Meanwhile, enjoy this delicious recipe by chef Kayla-Ann Osborn of The Chef’s Table in Durban, in your own kitchen.

by chef chef Kayla-Ann Osborn of The Chef’s Table

Serves 4


Chicken oysters

20 chicken oysters


Chicken jus

10 chicken backs

1 onion, sliced

1 carrot, sliced

1 leek, sliced

1L water



300g flour

3 eggs

2 separate egg yolks

1t salt

2t olive oil

250g portobello mushrooms, sliced

1 onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, chopped

2 sprigs thyme

1 egg, beaten



100g exotic mushrooms

4t butter


chicken oysters


truffle (either fresh, oil or zest)

8 long slices of Parmesan, shaved with a peeler

chicken jus


Chicken oysters

  1. Harvest the chicken oysters with a small, paring knife.
  2. Once you have harvested the chicken oysters set them aside in the fridge. (Your butcher might be able to give you already harvested chicken oysters.)


Chicken jus

  1. Brown chicken backs, onion, carrot and leek in a big saucepan on a medium heat.
  2. Cover with water and simmer gently for approximately 2 hours.
  3. Remove the chicken backs and strain the remaining stock through a sieve.
  4. Reduce the strained liquid down to a sauce by simmering on a low heat.



  1. In a mixing bowl or a food processor mix the flour, 3 eggs, 2 egg yolks, salt and olive oil to a smooth dough. Seal in an airtight container and refrigerate for at least 3 hours. This is your dough.
  2. In a very hot pan, add a dash of olive oil and the mushrooms. Season with salt and sauté on a high heat for a few minutes.
  3. Reduce the heat and add the onion. Cook until onions are almost soft.
  4. Add garlic and thyme and cook for a few more minutes until golden brown. Set aside in fridge. This is your filling.
  5. Roll dough out to a thin sheet about 1m long using a pasta machine. Cut in half.
  6. Lightly flour your cooking counter. Lay the first sheet of pasta down. Gently mark 4 evenly-spaced rings with the pasta cutter that you will use to cut the raviolis.
  7. Spoon a tablespoon of the filling in the middle of each spaced out ring. Using a pastry brush paint around the filling and the whole sheet with a light layer of 1 beaten egg.
  8. Lay the second sheet from one end pushing out the air all the way to the other end to make 4 pockets. Making sure the filling is in the middle of the cutter, cut the ravioli out.
  9. Bring a pot of water to the boil. Add a pinch of salt and drop the raviolis into the water and simmer for 2 minutes.
  10. Remove with a slotted spoon and place in ice water for 2 minutes.
  11. Remove from ice water and drizzle with a generous lug of olive oil. Refrigerate until ready to serve.



  1. Sauté exotic mushrooms in 2t of butter with a pinch of salt. Season chicken oysters with salt.
  2. In a hot pan sear the chicken oysters on either side, turn heat down and add in 2t of butter.
  3. Cook until golden brown on the outside. Drop raviolis in a pot of boiling water and cook to al dente, around 1 minute.
  4. Place ravioli on plate. Scatter mushrooms and 5 chicken oysters on each ravioli.
  5. Finish with the long slices of Parmesan, truffle and chicken jus.