#Robbysays Table Setting Tips & Trends

Posted on 25 Jul 2020

Whether you're having a classic family meal, a relaxed Sunday lunch or a sophisticated soiree, a superbly styled table should always set the tone. This begins with on-trend tableware, glassware and cutlery which is at the core of any table setting. We believe that the secret to an eye-catching table setting is to layer it with textures, colours and patterns. We take a look at a few key elements to inspire your next great table styling. Table Covering A sumptuous linen tablecloth in a plain colour is versatile and is a basic necessity that every household should have as it can be used to style any table from rustic and traditional to unique and contemporary and will provide pleasure for years to come. With a linen tablecloth, you can add a touch of refinement to any table setting .   Tactile Textures  and Layers Use layers to create visual interest. Add height and texture to the dining table by layering a textured place mat on top of the cloth and then stacking dinner and side plates, bowls and napkins. Creating layered place settings with stacked crockery and napkins creates an interesting look by giving depth to your dining table. Colour Add colour to your ... Read More

#Robbysays Table Setting Tips & Trends

Never mind the Nutella Ring Cake – Look at the Platter

Posted on 05 Jun 2020

We are three siblings, born from Italian parents who immigrated to South Africa in the late sixties. We grew up in Johannesburg, in Orange Grove, the cosmopolitan neighbourhood once known as "Little Italy", but there were families of all nationalities living in this colourful area. We had a wonderful childhood with scores of multi-national friends running wild and free in the streets, parks and on the ridge which towers over the suburb. We would leave home in the early morning, either school bound or destined for great adventures in the area with our tribe of friends, returning only when our tummies grumbled or when our mother yelled that it was time for "Merenda", the Italian word for a snack. Another Italian excuse for food. The inevitable presence of Nutella for Merenda, filled us with anticipation and caused us to have many tag-along buddies wanting to share in the feast. Our mother would serve it between thick slices of her home made bread, or layered richly as a filling on top of her famous Crostata (a tart which all her Grand kids still get to enjoy). Best of all was when she mixed it in a Ciambellone - a delicious ring cake once found in every Italian household ... Read More

Never mind the Nutella Ring Cake – Look at the Platter

The House Where Lemons Grow

Posted on 24 May 2020

Our house is situated on a ridge in an old Jewish neighbourhood of Johannesburg, built by the Italian prisoners of war. It's set on a slope and its garden looks just like a typical Mediterranean country garden. Picture a house on an orchard rising on a slope a little inland on the Amalfi Coast - but in Johannesburg, without the sea, or that breathtaking beauty, or the energy of "La Dolce Vita", or.....any of it. But you get the idea. Our house is not an English country home, or a Herbet Baker design. It's a rustic, Mediterranean style, village type home and it has Lemon trees. Three of them, and they've become very prolific thanks to my Dad's secret weapon. A few years ago, I complained to him about the soapy taste of my lemons and he told me to place 3 large iron nails in the soil around the trunk. What a difference it has made. Suddenly, over the last 2 to 3 years, the production and quality of fruit has multiplied and flourished. Last year we made litres of lemonade. This year we had so many lemons that we shared them with loved ones and neighbours and got wonderful gifts in return. The best of them being my sister Robby's Lemon Marmalade. She painstakingly went ... Read More

The House Where Lemons Grow

When American Apple Pie becomes French Pear Cake

Posted on 13 May 2020

Last week our powerhouse duo that fuel our online presence mentioned that the 13th of May is one of two days when the Americans honour their National favourite dessert - Apple Pie.  Imagine, two days dedicated to the celebration of one dish. These guys must really love Apple Pie. I mean, if you search the www you'll find countless recipes for Apple Pie and so many movies with reference or scenes about Apple Pie. There's even an anecdote about Teddy Roosevelt being served Apple Pie while travelling in Africa. I must say that i really like a good piece of warm apple pie with a serving of vanilla ice cream or fresh cream, but my family can't stand the texture of cooked apples, so it's rare that I bake it. When on Monday Sofia suggested that we do a blogpost on Apple Pie, I jumped at the idea of baking one. But I forgot to buy apples and sitting in our very large fruit bowl were a whole lot of pears. A friend had recently shared a French Pear cake recipe on my Lockdown - "Sister's Survival" Whatsapp Group and this sparked a whole lot of recipe sharing, so I decided to bake a French Pear Cake instead and what a success that was! It was more pears than cake and I added some ... Read More

When American Apple Pie becomes French Pear Cake

Love in the time of Corona

Posted on 08 May 2020

When you pick loads of lemons & share them with your neighbours, be ready to be spoilt in return. & so it was that I received kilos of freshly cut spinach from my lovely neighbour, Tula. What to do with all this spinach? With abundant time on my hands and having developed a curious sense of culinary adventure, I summoned my youngest right hand man & newly trained home made pasta chef, Matheo & we set about making home made Ravioli. My father makes these regularly. For him, it's a walk in the park. A few hours, a couple of GnTs & many laughs later our delicious dinner was served. P.S. Under normal circumstances I wouldn't dream of tackling the task of making filled fresh homemad pasta. I would either purchase ready made Ravioli or wait for an invitation from my parents. However, this forced Lockdown has given us time & shown us the joys of simple living with our families! The taste & fun was well worth the effort!   Recipe  Easy - Takes about 2 hours  (and a couple of good GnTs) Ingredients Pasta all'uovo 300gr flour 3 Large Free range eggs A pinch of salt Ravioli Filling 300gr Fresh Ricotta Straine 500gr ... Read More

Love in the time of Corona

Welcome to our brand new website!

Posted on 13 Jul 2016

We are very excited about the launch of our brand new website. It has been a work in progress, and we are delighted to finally share it with you. We trust that our site will become a source of inspiration to our customers, and that you will visit our store with high expectations that we will certainly meet. We are passionate about beautifully crafted homeware and gifts, and we promise to keep supplying our customers with well-designed and creative products that celebrate local talent. Our products are delicate and unique, and for this reason we still choose to sell them in-store only. Come and experience the Firehouse lifestyle in Dunkeld. You will be happy you did. Love, Robby & ... Read More

A unique photoshoot

Posted on 12 Jul 2016

As part of our website’s launch, we needed high quality images of our products, celebrating our store’s beautiful interior. We thank Alexi for his beautiful vision and dedication to the task! Here are some of the gorgeous images taken by Alexi. Enjoy! Love, Robby & ... Read More