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Vanilla Sponge Cake

Old-Fashioned Cream Cake

Salwaa’s Cape Malay Cooking

Here’s a delicious cake to treat your family with. My recipe uses minimal store cupboard ingredients. This cake can either be filled and topped with fresh fruit, jam or homemade fruit compote.

From My Kitchen To Yours – keeping our heritage alive since 2011!


1½ cups cake flour

2½ tsp baking powder

¼ tsp salt

¾ caster sugar

180g soft butter

3 large eggs

2 tsp vanilla essence


600ml fresh cream

2 tbsp sugar

1 tsp vanilla essence

Strawberry / apricot jam (optional)


Left over cream from the filling

Canned apricot / peaches slices or fresh strawberries


Pre-heat your oven to 170°C.

Grease two 18cm round cake pan and line bottoms with greaseproof paper.

In a bowl, sift the flour, baking powder and salt.

Using another bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light, fluffy and creamy.

Beat the eggs in one at a time.

Slowly fold in the dry ingredients. Stir gently until all the ingredients are incorporated.

Do not overmix.

Divide the batter evenly between the two prepared cake pan.

Bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Take out of the oven and leave to cool in the pans for 10 minutes before turning the cakes out onto a wire rack. Cool completely.


In a clean bowl whip the fresh cream, sugar and vanilla essence until the cream hold a stiff peak.

When the cakes are cool, sandwich together with a layer of jam, if you’re using it and a third of the whipped cream.

Spread the remaining cream over the top and sides.

Garnish / dip the sides with crushed peanuts or roasted desiccated coconut.

Top with slices of canned apricot, peaches or slices of fresh strawberries.

Alternatively, sandwich the cakes together with strawberry compote and some of the whipped cream. Pipe fresh cream around the edge of the cake, fill the centre of the cake (inside the cream) with strawberry compote.

Decorate with slices of fresh strawberries.

**To make the strawberry compote**

1 Tbsp maizena /cornstarch

3 Tbsps warm water

500g strawberries, hulled and sliced in half (you can also use frozen, no need to thaw)

zest and juice from 1/2 small lemon

1/4 cup sugar

Mix the maizena with the warm water until dissolved.

Add the strawberries and all the other ingredients in a pot.

Simmer for about 10 minutes over low heat.

Cool completely before using. It will thicken up as it cools down. Store in an airtight container for 1 week in a refrigerator.

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Black Eyed Beans Curry

Salwaa’s Black Eyed Beans Curry
(Swartbek Boontjies)

Salwaa Smith – Cape Malay Cooking & Other Delights
From My Kitchen To Yours – keeping our heritage alive for the past 11 years!

Black eyed beans curry was a firm favourite in our home whilst I was growing up. My mother always served black eyed beans curry with homemade flaky roti, onion and tomato sambal or mix veg atchar. My parents loved serving orange slices with our meals too.

Black eyed beans are a complex carb which takes longer to digest, and keep you full for longer. Black eyed beans are very versatile, and can be eaten as a soup, curry, added to chilli on carne, or added to salad. So do incorporate them in your diet.

This curry needs very basic ingredients, which I always keep in my food cupboard. The only preparation needed is soaking the black eyed beans at least 4 hours ahead of cooking. 

2 cups uncooked black eyed beans
600g mutton pieces
2 tbsp cooking oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 tomato, finely chopped
2 green chillies chopped (optional)
3 cloves garlic, grated
1 piece ginger, grated (approximately10cm piece)
2 tsp cumin / jeera powder
1 tsp coriander / koljana powder
1 tsp chilli powder
1 1/2 tsp turmeric / borrie
2 tsp leaf masala / roasted masala
1 tsp salt (according to your taste)
3 cardamom pods
1 stick cinnamon


Soak the beans for at least 4 hours or overnight.

If you forget to soak, then soak in hot water for ½-1 hour before cooking. Soaking also helps to reduce the cooking time.

After soaking give the beans a quick cook, drain and set aside.

Pour the oil into a heavy based pot, add the chopped onions and braise until the onions are transparent about 10 minutes over medium heat.

Add the meat. Cook 10 minutes.

Add water as needed.

Add the whole spices, powdered spices chillies and tomato.

Cook until the meat are semi soft, approximately 30 minutes depending on the type of meat you are using.

Add the beans, simmer over medium to low heat, until the beans are soft and the meat and sauce are combined, about a further 45 – 60 minutes.

It is best to complete the cooking process over low heat in order for the flavours to develop and to cook to the right consistency.

Garnish with fresh chopped coriander before serving.

Best serve with boiled white rice or roti, atchars and or sambals.

Cook’s Tip:

Substitute mutton with beef pieces or lamb pieces

Use 2 can two cans of black eyed beans instead of the dry beans. Drain the liquid in the can. Shorten the cooking time by 30 minutes.

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Follow my tutorial to make the perfect flaky rotis ⬆️

Crispy Fish Batter

Salwaa’s Crispy Fish Batter

Fish and chips taste so much better when you make it yourself from scratch and if you follow my recipe below you’ll get perfectly fried fish every time! You can use my recipe for snoek, hake, cod or even prawn. You can also follow my youtube video, link below, for easy reference.

Salwaa Smith – Cape Malay Cooking & Other Delights
From My Kitchen To Yours – keeping our heritage alive since 2011!

You can use any fish of choice like snoek, hake, cod etc. I prefer using cod cut into small pieces.

For the batter:
1 cup plain flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 TBSP brown vinegar
1/2 tsp black pepper / cayenne
1/2 tsp chilli powder (optional)
1/2 cup soda water or more

Mix together into a batter, the mixture should not be runny.

Season fish lightly with salt and dust slightly with extra flour.

Dip the fish, both sides into the batter, you can repeat the dipping for a thicker batter and shallow / deep fry for a few minutes aside until light brown and crispy. Remove the fried fish gently from the oil and drain on paper towel.

Serve with chips, tartar sauce, lemon atchar, pickled onions or a squeeze of lemon juice. Alternative sprinkle the fish liberally with brown vinegar and salt.

You’ll find my tartar recipe below.

Salwaa’s Homemade Tartar Sauce

1 cup mayonnaise 

1 pickled gherkin finely chopped 

1 tsp finely chopped fresh parsley 

2 Tbsp lemon juice

Mix all the ingredients in a bowl and serve with any fish, prawns, calamari etc…


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Peppermint Chocolate Squares

Chocolate Peppermint Squares

Delicious chocolate cookies / biscuits with a hint of peppermint. Topped with peppermint / Aero chocolate.

Salwaa Smith – Cape Malay Cooking & Other Delights
From My Kitchen To Yours – keeping our heritage alive since 2011!

1 large egg
1/3 cup cooking oil
½ cup sugar
3 Tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp peppermint essence
1½ cups desiccated coconut
2 cups self-raising flour
100g soft butter
Topping: Peppermint crisp or aero chocolate

Preheat your oven at 180°C.

Lightly grease a 20 x 20 centimetre square baking tin.

In a large mixing bowl add the butter and oil. Whisk the butter, sugar and oil until light and creamy.

Add the egg and mix until creamy.

Add the coco powder and peppermint essence, stir to combine.

Add the self-raising flour & coconut and mix by hand to make fairly stiff dough.

Press the dough evenly in the greased baking tin. Lightly scrape the top of the dough with a fork for a rustic effect.

Bake in a pre-heated oven at 180°C for approximately 10 – 15 minutes.

Grate the chocolate over the cake immediately upon removal from the oven. The chocolate will melt over the warm dough.

Allow to cool slightly before slicing into squares. Gently remove the squares from the tin and leave to cool completely on a wire cooling rack before storing in an airtight container.

Makes 20 – 24 biscuit squares.


Roll the dough between 2 sheets of greaseproof paper, scrape the dough lightly with a fork for a rough texture. Use a square or round cookie cutter to cut out shapes.

Transfer the cut out shapes onto a lined baking tin. Bake at 180°C for about 8-10 min or until the cookie is firm to the touch.

Transfer onto a cooling rack. Grate peppermint / aero chocolate over the warm cookies and top with an aero bubble chocolate.

Store in an airtight container when the cookies have cooled down completely.

Peppermint Chocolate Cookies

© Cape Malay Cooking & Other Delights

Spring Rolls Recipe

Spring rolls are deep fried appetisers often made with phyllo pastry filled with vegetables or vegetables with shredded chicken. Here is my recipe for crispy vegetable spring rolls. Serve warm with a sweet spicy sauce or dip.

Salwaa Smith – Cape Malay Cooking & Other Delights

From My Kitchen To Yours – from my kitchen to yours keeping our heritage alive for the past 11 years!

Crispy Spring Rolls

Spring Rolls Recipe

All you need to make homemade spring rolls are phyllo pastry, available in the freezer at most supermarkets, chicken mince or boneless chicken, spring onions, mix veg, seasoning and soy sauce. Serve with a sweet chilli sauce or any of your favourite dipping sauces.

These spring rolls can be air fried as well as deep fried. When using the air fry method, defrost slightly, brush your spring rolls lightly with oil and bake at 200°C in a pre-heated air fryer until golden brown and crispy, approximately 5 minutes a side.

ll instructions and method of folding⤵️

How To Make Spring Rolls

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Seafood Curry

Here we are making a delicious seafood curry. Quick and easy to make! Hope you’re going to make it soon and do let me know what you think of my recipe. 

Serve with white boiled rice or roti


1 kg mixed seafood

500g fish, any firmed flesh fish will do

Oil, mustard oil goes well with fish

Mustard seeds

Stick cinnamon 


Curry leaves 

2 large onions

4 large tomatoes 




Roasted masala

Fish masala, see my recipe below




Coconut milk 

Follow my recipe and method below for best results.

Salwaa’s Homemade Fish Masala Blend

Use for fish curries, seafood curries, paellas, fish or seafood breyanis or akhnis as well as a rub for fried fish or braais. Double or triple the recipe if you like but small batches in my opinion is better to maintain freshness

2 tsp coriander powder

2 tsp garam masala

1 tsp cumin powder

1 tsp black pepper

2 tsp chilli powder

1 tsp paprika

1 tsp chilli flakes

1/2 tsp garlic powder

1/2 tsp ginger powder

1 tsp turmeric powder

Mix well and store in a airtight container. For a better more flavourful spice mix use fresh whole spices instead. Slightly roast the whole spices and pound it using a pestle and mortar or a grinder until fine.

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Pickled Fish

Pickled Fish or Ingelegde Vis is thought to have originated from Cape Malay Cooking as a way to preserve fresh fish at the early Cape colony. It was only much later that the aromatic dish became a staple food at Easter time, perhaps chosen for its ability to stay fresh over the long Easter weekend. Whilst pickled fish is closely linked to Cape Town, it is a much-loved dish, enjoyed by both Muslims and Christians.

Pickled fish is a sweet and sour dish which is traditionally eaten over Easter time. This is a very tasty way of preparing fish and can be cooked in advance. The flavour improves with time and stays fresh for up to two weeks in the refrigerator . Here I have used yellow tail to make this pickled fish. You may use snoek or any other firm fish. Best eaten cold. My kids tend to warm it slightly in the microwave!

1kg snoek or any firm fish cut into large slices

Salt and pepper for seasoning
1 cup  brown vinegar
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup cooking oil
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup sugar
3 large onions, sliced
1 lemon, sliced
1 tsp whole peppercorns
1 tsp salt
2 tsp ground coriander / koljana
1 tsp ground cumin / jeera
1/2 tsp turmeric /borrie

1 tsp crushed chillies
1/4 tsp dry ginger
1 tsp curry spice
5 bay leaves

Follow my Youtube tutorial for the method

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Marrow & Frikkadel Stew / Bredie

Marrow & frikkadel stew, perfect comfort food to make on a cold and wintry day. Substitute the marrow with squash if you prefer.

Salwaa Smith – @capemalaycooking

From My Kitchen To Yours – keeping our heritage alive for the past 11 years!

Serves 6
500g mutton or lamb pieces
2 Tbsps oil
2 onions, chopped
Salt to taste
5 cloves
1 – 2 green chilies, deseeded and chopped
1 piece stick cinnamon
1 large marrow, peeled and cut into thick slices
Water as needed

Frikkadel ingredients:
500g fat free minced meat (steak mince or chicken)
1 large onion
1 small green pepper
1 tomato
1/2 bunch dhanya (optional)
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon crushed garlic
1 slice bread (couple of days old is best)
1 egg
Salt & pepper to taste

Wash and drain minced meat well.
Soak bread in water and squeeze excess water out.
Chop onion, pepper, tomato, dhanya finely.
Add all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix thoroughly using your hands.

Heat the oil in a large deep pot. Braise the onions until very brown, add the meat and spices and cook over medium to high heat until the meat are brown and tender, 20 – 30 minutes depending on the type of meat you using, adding water (not excessive) to prevent it from burning. For best results the meat should be a deep golden brown colour.

Meanwhile prepare your frikkadel. Place a small ball (40ml) of frikkadel mixture in the centre of each slice of marrow. Place the stuffed marrow on top of the mutton mixture, add 1 cup of water. Sprinkle with grated nutmeg, dot with small pieces of butter and steam covered for about 30 minutes on low – medium heat without stirring. (if you need to check on the food stick a wooden spoon gently inside and move slightly) Serve, with white rice and atchar.

Watch My YouTube Tutorial⤵️

Make a double batch of frikkadel, form into balls, flash freeze and store in a ziplock bag for next time you make a frikkadel dish

Samosa Recipes

With Ramadan around the corner I thought I’d share some alternative samosa fillings. Samosas are perfect to accompany your soup for Iftar or to enjoy as a light snack with your favourite dip or chutney.

Samosas are made with fried or baked pastry with a savoury filling, such as spiced potatoes, cheese & onions and minced meat (lamb, beef or chicken). The traditional mince and onion filling remains a firm favourite amongst many.

Samosas are traditionally deep fried in vegetable or sunflower oil. For a healthy alternative brush your samosas with olive oil and bake at 190ºC for 40 minutes or until golden brown and baked through. Samosas can also be air fried using the same method as for your conventional oven.

Cheese & Onion Samosa Filling


2 large onions, peeled and chopped finely 

200g grated cheddar cheese

2 Tbsp cake flour

1 – 2 tsp crushed red chillies

1tsp roasted masala

2Tbsp fresh coriander / dhanya


Mix the flour with the cheddar cheese to prevent the cheese from sticking together.

Add the rest of the ingredients mix gently together and fill your samosa pur.

Chicken & Corn Samosa Filling

Chicken & Corn Samosa Filling

2 chicken breasts

4 cloves garlic, grated

3 – 4 green chillies, chopped

1 red pepper, finely chopped

2 Tbsp dhanya / fresh coriander

1 chicken cube

2 cups corn (drain water if using from a can)

1/2 cups mozzarella cheese (optional)

1 bunch spring onions, chopped


Boil the chicken with the chicken cube, garlic and enough water to cover till cooked, about 10 minutes.

Drain the water completely.

Allow the chicken to cool and shred into pieces.

Add the remaining ingredients.

Season with salt to taste.

Use as a filling for samosas or spring rolls.

Fajita Samosa Filling

Fajita Samosa Filling


400g deboned chicken breasts (about 2 chicken breasts) 

1 red pepper 1 yellow pepper 1 green pepper 

2 large onions 

1 Tbsp oil (olive or normal cooking oil) 

½ – 1 tsp crushed red chillies 

1 tsp jeera /cumin 

1 tsp paprika 

¼ tsp garlic powder 

1 tsp salt (or to taste) 

1 tsp freshly crushed black pepper 

200 strong cheddar cheese 

2 tsp lemon juice 


Cook the chicken breasts in a little water. 

Add water as needed but don’t add too much, just so it does not stick or burn to your pot. 

Meanwhile chop the peppers and onions finely. 

Once the chicken has cooked removed it from the pot and allow to cool. 

Shred the chicken breasts into small pieces. 

Heat the oil in the pot add the onions and peppers, sauté for about 5 minutes. 

Add the rest of the spices, stir and cook a further 5 minutes, don’t add water. 

Cool completely before adding the shredded chicken, cheese and lemon juice. 

Fill your samosas as you normally would.

Serve with a chutney dip. 

Learn to make samosas from scratch by following my tutorial above. You’ll learn how to make the samosa leaves / pur as well as traditional mince filling.

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Hungarian Tart (Krummel Tert)

Hungarian tart or krummel tert, is a soft crumbly biscuit like cake similar to the short crust pastry. It can be filled with jam of any flavour. Substitute the jam for apples to make an apple crumble. Serve on its own, with a scoop of ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream. I’m not sure where the name Hungarian tart originates from though, would be interested if anyone could shed some light on the origin of Hungarian Tart.

Hungarian Tart


125g butter

2 Tbsp cooking oil

1 large egg

2 Tbsp castor sugar

1 tsp vanilla or almond essence

2 cups cake flour, sifted

2 tsp baking powder

Smooth apricot jam (or mixed fruit jam)

Desiccated coconut as needed

Icing sugar as needed

Hungarian Tart / Krummel Tert


Grease a small Swiss roll pan. Or you may use a round cake tin

Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.

Add egg, oil and essence, mix well.

Add the sifted flour as well as the baking powder, mix into a soft dough.

Refrigerate one third of the dough for about 20 minutes.

Or you can even put it in the freezer for a few minutes.

Press the remaining dough into prepared pan.

Spread a thick layer of jam on top of the dough in the pan.

Sprinkle a thin layer of coconut over the jam.

Grate the remaining dough on top.

Bake 12-15 minutes or until light golden brown at 180°C in a pre-heated oven.

Sift the icing sugar over as soon as it comes out of the oven.

Leave to cool in pan then cut into squares/slices.


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