HellyBelly is the blog belonging
to travel, food and portrait
photographer Helen Cathcart

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Cape Town, South Africa

South Africa, I fell in love with you. The light, the people, the landscape, the food. It has taken me so long to put these photos up since my trip to Cape Town in December, but it has been so nice to look back over them after what feels a long time of cold and darkness and then some more cold. 
After a climb up Table Mountain via Skeleton Gorge which nearly killed me, we started off in Cape Town and travelled down the Garden Route on long long roads, passing fields of Ostriches and epic mountain ranges. 
First stop was horse riding on the amazing stretch of whiteness that is Noordhoek beach. Then a stop at Kalk Bay staying at Chartfield B&B which is when we learnt that guesthouses here are like 5 star hotels! After a very quick look at the penguins in Betty's Bay, we had a 5 hour drive onto Mossel Bay, followed by Wilderness, Knysna and Plettenburg.
Then it was our longest drive making our way back to Cape Town via Route 62. After dropping down from the misty mountains dodging baboons, you hit the longest, straightest roads ever. It is one of the most amazing drives I have done, broken up by a quick stop at the famous Ronnie's Sex Shop. After 7 hours it is all worth it when you come over the mountain and see the Franschhoek pass. 
You can't visit Franschhoek without lunch at La Petit Ferme which is one of the most amazing restaurant settings I have ever seen. We stayed at Akademie Guest House, which I can categorically say is one of the best places I have ever stayed. 
We fittingly finished off at Cape Point, not quite the most southernly point on the continent but it certainly feels like it.
So if anyone can put me up in Camp's Bay next winter, please let me know!

Monday, 4 February 2013

Food styling by Helly Belly and Rosie Foodie

Amazing what you can do in a day with Rosie Birkett! Rosie of  'A lot on her plate' blog fame is a top food writer for the likes of Grazia, Olive, Waitrose and Stylist Magazine. But as it also turns out, is a brilliant cook! 
She managed to knock together all these beautiful dishes in one morning, for her foray into food styling. She also had collected together all the perfect props. I can't describe to you how unbelievable the muscovado meringues tasted with the lychee, pistachio and pomegranite seeds. Probably not a great idea to eat about three of these as your lunch! After a heavy sugar crash I revived myself by devouring the clams with white beans and kale, as well as polishing off half the Mackerel en Papilottes. This was taken from a recipe in one of my sacred books, Elizabeth David's guide to French Country Cooking. 
We finished off with a stab at practising some Indian recipe styling with a lamb shank curry. This in preparation for the next cookbook I'm shooting which will be for Cafe Spice Namaste. Watch this space!