Liziwe Matloha gives us a taste of her new cookbook, 'Dinner at Matloha's'
Chase away the autumn chill with the popular chef's easy recipes for roasted tomato and basil soup and a flavourful beef stew
“Chasing my passion for food has been worth every minute,” says Liziwe Matloha, who swapped her corporate job in brand communications for culinary school six years ago.
Since then, she’s opened a private restaurant in Boksburg, won a big cookery competition, and embraced social media gaining a large following on Instagram.
For Matloha, the cherry on top came this month when she brought out her first cookbook, Dinner at Matloha’s (Penguin Random House SA, R300), something she says she’s always dreamed of doing.
Here, Matloha shares a taste of some of the wonderful recipes in her new book.
To read more about her inspiring journey from humble home cook to well-respected chef and food writer, click here.
ROASTED TOMATO AND BASIL SOUP
To bring out the best flavours, use extra virgin olive oil for roasting the tomatoes.
Makes: ± 1½ litres
1.2kg ripe Roma tomatoes
60ml (4 tbsp) extra virgin olive oil
10ml (2 tsp) sea salt, or to taste
5ml (1 tsp) ground black pepper, or to taste
6 garlic cloves, peeled
1 large onion, chopped
1x 400g can whole peeled tomatoes with juice
30g fresh basil leaves
15ml (1 tbsp) sugar
1.5l vegetable stock
250ml fresh cream
Basil pesto or fresh basil leaves, for garnish (optional)
- Cut the tomatoes in half lengthways and spread them in a single layer on a baking sheet. Drizzle with 1—2 tbsp olive oil, turning to coat all sides, and season with salt and pepper. Add the garlic cloves. Place in a preheated oven at 200°C and roast for 40—45 minutes. Set aside.
- Place 2 tbsp olive oil in a large pot over a medium heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 10 minutes.
- Add the canned tomatoes with their juice, the basil leaves, sugar and the oven-roasted tomatoes and garlic.
- Add the warm stock and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 40 minutes.
- Remove the pot from the stove. Using a hand-held blender or jug blender, blend the soup to a smooth consistency.
- Just before serving, gently reheat the soup and stir in the cream.
- Serve garnished with basil pesto or fresh basil leaves, if desired.
To soak up all the lovely juices, serve this stew with rice, steamed bread straight out of the pan, or a fresh, crusty loaf. The stew has plenty of vegetables, but there’s nothing to stop you from adding more veggies on the side to boost the goodness.
2 garlic cloves, crushed or finely chopped
15ml (1 tbsp) finely chopped fresh rosemary
2 sprigs fresh thyme
10ml (2 tsp) ground paprika
Salt and ground black pepper, to taste
1kg stewing beef, cut into cubes
45ml (3 Tbsp) olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped or thinly sliced
1 sachet (50g) tomato paste (regular or beef flavour)
1 litre beef stock, plus extra
15ml (1 tbsp) Worcestershire sauce
4 carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
3 stalks celery, cut into chunks
6 baby potatoes, peeled and cut in half
Fresh thyme or other herbs, for garnish
- Place the garlic, fresh herbs, paprika, and salt and pepper in a large bowl or zipper bag. Add the beef cubes and toss until they are coated. Set aside for at least 1 hour, or overnight, to allow the flavours to infuse.
- Heat the olive oil in a heavy-based pot over a medium-high heat. Add the meat and brown on all sides (do this in batches if necessary). Remove the meat with a slotted spoon and set aside.
- Add the onion to the pot and cook, stirring, for 2—3 minutes, until starting to soften.
- Stir in the tomato paste and cook for a further 2 minutes.
- Return the meat to the pot along with the beef stock and Worcestershire sauce. Stir thoroughly.
- Cover the pot with a lid, lower the heat, and simmer for 90 minutes.
- After this time, add the carrots and celery, stir to combine, and continue to simmer, covered, for another 30 minutes, or until the beef and vegetables are tender. The sauce should be thick, but if you prefer it thinner, add a little extra beef stock.
- Adjust the seasoning and scatter over some fresh thyme or other herbs before serving.
Chef’s tip: “Try something different: instead of Worcestershire sauce, substitute the same amount of soy sauce, Marmite or Bovril.”