Cooking With The Kitchen Collective
A new addition to Cape Town’s culinary scene recently opened its doors in the Bo-Kaap – as if we don’t already have enough mouth-watering restaurants to choose from! But, in this one, you can choose to work for your meals or just have yourself a beautiful glass of wine while you watch everyone else cook … but still get to eat some fantastic food. Sound familiar? Yes, they’ve done it again! The Kitchen Collective is the third instalment of the Ginger & Lime and Salt & Sage brands. But just bigger. I won’t say better because they are each fantastic in their own way.
What makes The Kitchen Collective different is the fact that it supports three kitchens in its 380 square metre floor space! The food, vibe and surroundings are the same though. So expect nothing less than 6 or more scrumptious dishes and lots of wine!
The Style Of The Cooking Experience
If you don’t know the style of these cooking evenings, think of it as a relaxed cooking class where you choose to get as involved with the cooking as you like. You cook alongside the chefs and prepare each meal to be eaten right there and then.
Each evening has a set theme of which one would definitely suit your palate. Moroccan, Italian, Asian, Japanese, French … it’s all there. And you get to take home the recipes that were made on the evening. So there is absolutely no reason not to continue providing the family with exquisite dishes at home!
Creating Japanese Dishes
I’m a huge fan of the fresh and light meals the Japanese create, so I was very excited to join The Kitchen Collective Japanese evening! We started the night off with edamame beans with chilli and salt and some fantastic Deetlefs Chenin Blanc and Merlot. I’m normally a red wine drinker but someone recommended the 2017 Chenin Blanc, which I stuck with for the rest of the evening. It paired so well with all the dishes and was just such a beautiful wine.
If you run on Cape Town time, then this evening is not for you. We started cooking soon after our arrival. It was, after all, what we came for. Upon retrospection, it’s a good thing we started when we did as we had a lot of meals to get through!
Let’s Get Started!
The team eases you into the night of cooking so we did not have to prepare the first dish, which was an authentic Japanese vegetable ramen noodle bowl. A simple dish, but packed with lots of flavour with all the Japanese classics – mirin, dashi powder, ginger, rice vinegar, chillis, and soy sauce.
Next up, we got involved with our first dish. Chicken yakitori with ginger, garlic, soy sauce, and togarashi spice with freshly pickled cucumbers & radish. Yakitori means skewered chicken in Japanese. So think chicken sosaties but with an Asian twist. It was divine.
Also, if you think that you need to pickle your cucumber and radishes weeks before the time, think again. We did it right there and ate it all in 20 minutes and the flavours were fully developed!
Up next was the dish I was looking forward to the most – a chilli and sesame seared fillet of tuna on an avocado and pea mash. The tuna is covered in said spice, salt, and seeds, and then quickly seared on both sides. The avocado and pea mash complements the tuna perfectly. I wasn’t the only one who returned for a few extra helpings of tuna. I am sad to say that there were no takeaways left that evening.
Up next was a tataki of beef served on a bed of noodles with wasabi mayo and poppy seeds with crispy seaweed and a tosa-zu dressing. We paired this with a baby spinach salad with truffle oil, grated parmesan, onion sprouts, and griddled glazed baby aubergines. The beef was succulent and juicy and went fantastically well with the wasabi mayo noodles. The baby aubergines have now been added to my repertoire along with the baby spinach salad. Not one of the dishes disappointed. All the flavours were top-notch.
Green Tea Ice Cream
I could have gone home happily after that, but an evening is never fully complete if you haven’t had dessert. After all our hard work in the kitchen, we were served a green tea ice cream topped with mint, ginger and lime-infused papaya and granadilla. I’m not a big fan of fruit for dessert, but the combination of the ice cream and the herbs and fruit were such a satisfactory ending to the evening’s flavours that I wouldn’t have wanted it any different.
The Kitchen Collective Magic
I’ve since made myself the seared tuna at home, but it just wasn’t as good as the Kitchen Collective version. It might have something to do with their wonderful hospitality, lovely kitchen vibes, and high-quality food. I couldn’t recommend it as a present for my upcoming birthday enough. You know where to find me, right? #HintHint
Visit The Kitchen Collective
Get all the details on The Kitchen Collective below.
The Kitchen Collective
Address: 80 Jordaan Street, Bo-Kaap
Article Date: October 2019
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