Garden to table – with a few interruptions from the elephants

Formal cooking has never been my forte, but having a lodge has moved me in the direction of having to put on an apron (at last!)

My first source of inspiration always starts with what is in our garden. Two months ago the elephants trampled absolutely everything in sight except for the Borage bush and the Basil. There is a saying in Africa when things go AWOL but not all is lost.  We simply say “at least”! So yes, there is always something to be made with what’s in the garden.

Doug and I enjoy feeding people. It is a warming and nurturing experience. Having cooked since he was a little boy, Doug handles all things “meat”. It must come from a humane source and must be well cured if it is beef.  Being a true bushman / carnivore he does not touch vegetables. I had been a vegetarian for seventeen years when I met him. Quite the contrast, but it works well in our environment as each plate is designed around our combined love for food. Hence Doug oversees the proteins in our kitchen, and I work with the veggies.  Henry is our head cook, taught by Doug. He started as a groom working in the stables 23 years ago and worked his way into our kitchen. A real natural who has the uncanny way of not ever being able to follow a recipe. It has to come through his own practical learning process. Henry is always calm, and always keen to try new recipes.

We use what we have in the garden, and as much as possible source all other stock locally, and hence the menu changes seasonally..