JADE de Waal – one of the favourites on South Africa's first series of Masterchef – has written a cookery book, Jamming with Jade – and it is just as much of a delight as its author.
De Waal started out on her food adventures while still at school, with a self-published scrapbook of recipes, drawing and photographs, and then started what she calls Food Jams while studying jazz a year or so later.
"What started as a get-together with friends, where cooking their own meal was only half the experience, soon became a monthly event collaborating with sommeliers, illustrators, photographer, foodies and many more amazing minds," she says.
The result, several years down the line, is a fabulous collection of memories centred around meals – mostly using fresh, quick and fun recipes. This Secret Sausage Pasta is a perfect example.
Extra virgin olive oil for frying
8 good-quality pork or lamb sausages
A few sprigs rosemary, leaves picked
Extra virgin olive oil
4 cloves garlic, peeled and finely sliced
2 x 400g tins plum tomatoes, blended
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
120g fresh or frozen peas
Pasta of your choice
Pinch of salt
Large handful fresh basil, coarsely chopped, for serving
Grated Parmesan cheese, for serving
Heat a large saucepan and add a few glugs of oil. Cut up the sausages, squeeze the meat from the skins and shape into balls the size of a walnut. Fry the meatballs until golden brown and cooked through. Add the rosemary to the meatballs, tossing everything together and cook for 30 seconds.
To make the tomato sauce, heat some olive oil over a low heat in a saucepan. Add the garlic and fry for a few minutes, taking care not to let it burn. Add the tomatoes and season for taste. Simmer for about 10 minutes or until reduced.
Add the peas to the tomato sauce and turn off the heat.
In the meantime, cook the pasta in salted boiling water until al dente. When cooked, drain and divide the pasta and meatballs between four bowls.
Spoon over the tomato sauce, add the basil, sprinkle over the cheese and tuck in!
- Jamming with Jade by Jade de Waal is published by Human & Rousseau and retails for R240.