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SHARING THE LOVE AND PASSION FOR SPICES

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Most people tend to associate spices with heat rather than flavour and aroma. Spices consist of oil, which is flavour enhancer and some spices do not go well with everything but if you stick to the basic four: cinnamon, cardamom, cloves and peppercorns they will blend well with most foods. In most homes, you always find the common black peppercorns, nutmeg, cinnamon, saffron, cardamom and vanilla. To become masterful in your cooking with various combinations, keep whole cumin seeds, black mustard seeds, ground cumin, coriander, turmeric, and good dry red chillies. Whenever you do cooking with spices in your home, be adventurous and try foreign spices and create your own blends. You do not want to overdo it so for starters you can start by two, then three or more when you familiar with the spices because the idea is to maintain that special flavour. In my kitchen, often I use them random and I tell you the results are amazing and my favourite spice blend is cloves and cardamom.

CHICKEN SALAD WITH YOGHURT DRESSING

6 boneless chicken breast

Olive oil for brushing

Salt

Ground black pepper

300g watercress

500g artichoke hearts 2

0g packet chives 1

00g walnuts

120g leaf parsley

120g mint leaves

Two red onions

Two long red chillies

300g feta cheese

FOR THE YOGHURT DRESSING

300g plain yoghurt

One garlic clove

One teaspoon dried mint

Grated rind of 2 lemons and juice Four tablespoon oil

 

METHOD

Preheat a frying pan or griddle over high heat. Place the chicken breasts between two layers and flatten them out to an even thickness by pounding them with a rolling pin or meat mallet. Start pounding from the center of each breast and work outwards towards the edges. Brush each flattened chicken breast with olive oil and season on both sides with salt and black pepper. Griddle the chicken beast for approximately 6 minutes [depending on the thickness of the breast] on each side until they are cooked through. Remove the chicken breast from the heat and allow to rest. To make the dressing, combine the dressing ingredients in a small bowl with salt and black pepper to taste and stir well until they are evenly blended Put watercress in a large mixing bowl along with artichoke halves, walnuts, herbs, onions, chillies and just a little sea salt and black pepper. Break the feta cheese roughly and mix all the ingredients together well. Slice the chicken breast thinly, almost shredding them, add to the salad and toss lightly until mixed through. Drizzle the dressing all over salad before serving. HINTS AND TIPS Create your own mixture of yoghurt dressings for variety and special light flavors. You do not have to have a million ingredients; sometimes you just need a handful of spices and a few helpful hints on what to do with them. ****If you want to know more about my spice blends in the market, or send me feedback, inbox my Facebook page Food Radio.

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BOSJE elevates jazz education in Botswana

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CHANGING LIVES: Music has the power to empower youth.

The Botswana Society of Jazz Education (BOSJE) will host the 9th annual International Jazz Day for the 3rd time this year at the Maitisong theatre. According to the founding chairperson Akhutlheng Mogami, the society was formed to create a platform for jazz musicians and aspiring jazz musicians to grow and share ideas and even have their work documented.

“As a society, we have realized a need for jazz education. There is also no documentation about jazz in Botswana, which makes it difficult for both the teachers and students when it comes to teaching and learning about jazz as there is no local content to refer to. It is also for purposes of funding applications to run workshops and host festivals and exchange programs that we needed to have a legally registered nonprofit making entity as this one,” she said.

BOSJE was officially registered on the 31st of August 2015 with the registrar of societies and some its objectives include to ensure the growth of Jazz in Botswana and development of jazz education; to build jazz community by advancing education and research; to document, preserve and archive our Botswana jazz heritage; to promote skills development and performance through jazz camps, exchange programs and jazz shows and festivals, and to also develop new audiences.

In January 2017 the society formed a youth jazz big band (Big Bands). Mogami noted that they managed to bring together young people from all walks of life to teach them about jazz and how to play jazz. Since then, the band has been growing substantially both musically and professionally. She noted that The Big Bands in Botswana project which aims to put together jazz bands in schools and communities all over the country. “The project brings together young people and teaches them to play music in an ensemble set up.

The project commenced on the 15th of February 2019 with the primary objective of this project is to bring positive social change through music. Children who are involved in this music program receive a music education, which we believe will lead them to improved overall academic success. The children will also learn the essential skills needed for the 21st century workforce.

In addition to that, these children will also have a platform to exercise their creativity, and all this will in turn grow their confidence.” The band has graced the Masire foundation annual gala dinner, International Jazz Day, Annual De Beers sight holders Dinner, and Gaborone toastmasters among others.

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Diva Vebrok and Benson Phutego drop love sin gle

The MidweekSun Admin

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NEW OFFERING: Benson & Diva Vebrok’s listening session rocked

Diva Vebrok and Benson Phutego recently released their joint single titled Ha o ka leba. The two launched the song at a listening session at Greenberry Gardens. Music artists including Nono, Franco and promoters PP and Gloria Dzwikiti as well as other industry role players flocked the venue to listen to what the two have to offer and they were not disappointed.

The single is good quality – from the melody, lyrics, rthyme and production. The divine diva Diva Vebrok adds a golden touch with her smooth voice while the bold and eloquent Phutego’s voice complements hers as he breaks out into poetry.

Director of ceremony at the listening session Berry Heart also kept the crowd galvanised throughout the night with her energetic spirit. President of Music Promotions Zenzele Hirschfield expressed appreciation for the support rendered to the two and highlighted that it is important for artists to support one another. “I am honoured to see that that many people in the local music industry have come out to support their fellow artists.

This means a lot and we really need to unite as artists all the time,” she said. She sang praises for Diva Vebrok who she said was passionate and hard working. “She is more than just an artist but also an influencer and entrepreneur. She is one of the women in the music industry who work hard and never give up on their craft,” she said.

Phutego impressed the crowd with his words of wisdom as he appreciated being featured by Ve brok on the single. “It was great working with her as she is passionate and hard working. Women are the pillars of society and as such they should be respected. I have no regrets about this project because I am confident that we produced a great love song.”

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