Manager’s ReportsNews from the Management Team
Wild photo of the month – by Paul, Sue, and Mark Johnstone
Spring is in the air and the landscape is slowly changing. Some of the trees around camp are showing off new small, green leaves and before we know, we will be surrounded with a fresh burst of green. Now that the sun is rising earlier and setting later, we have changed the game drive times to depart earlier in the morning and later in the afternoons. With the temperatures slowly rising, it is no longer necessary for heaters in the evenings and we have been enjoying pleasant nights in the boma around the fire. We had a few hot days and it will not be too long before our guests will be spending their days next to the pool, with a refreshing drink in hand. For those of you visiting us during the next few months, please remember to bring along your sunscreen. This summer is going to be a hot one!
Lion by Gert Smit
With the fresh new smell of spring in the air, we also had some exciting fresh changes at the lodge. Two of our rooms, the Manyeleti Honeymoon Suite and Buffalo Luxury Suite underwent a soft refurb this month. It is amazing what a fresh layer of paint, some new décor items and a touch of fresh wood can do. Lion luxury suite is next in line. Although the changes are not major, small upgrades are needed from time to time. It keeps the rooms up to date, with the same homely feel our guests enjoy.
Zebra drinking water by Morné Fouché
As you never know what the daily life in the bush will bring, it is always safe to be prepared. With that thought in mind, we also keep our staff prepared and trained to handle some medical situations. This month, 11 of our staff members completed a Wilderness First Aid course and are now the proud owners of their Level 1 First Aid certificates. For some, the training was a well needed refresher, as First Aid qualifications need to be renewed every three years. We are now once again all very confident and ready to assist wherever needed. A big Thank you to Africa Safe-T, our medical service provider in the Sabi Sand Wildtuin, for the training. Our team enjoyed every second of it.
This month, we got some interesting pictures from the trapcam. We decided to place the trapcam on a tree next to the road at Kraaines pan. I always enjoy the night action. This month we got a picture of an adult civet. Civets are nocturnal animals, mostly seen in the hours between dusk and dawn. Their diet consists of small reptiles, rats, mice, fruits and seeds. With the season changing, this night walker will soon start feasting on juicy berries and wild fruits. We also saw some large herds of elephant, impala, zebra, giraffe, hyena and a warthog family pass the camera at all hours of the day and night. Comes to show, the bush never sleeps!
At Elephant Plains we are always celebrating birthdays, almost one every week. During September, there were once again plenty of staff birthdays. Linky, who celebrated her birthday on the 5th is one of the ladies that makes sure the luxury suites are spotless. She is a very humble person and always has the sweetest smile. Arend celebrated his birthday on the 6th. Arend is a strong links on the chef’s chain in the kitchen. Onnie had her birthday on the 16th. Onnie is one of our waitresses, who attend to your needs with a smile. Just before the month came to an end we celebrated another chef’s birthday. Head chef Yolandi celebrated her birthday on the 27th. To all our readers who celebrated their birthdays during September, we hope you also had a fantastic day, filled with happiness and laughter.
Peanut Butter Chocolate Cheesecake
This month, chef Yolandi is sharing a mouth-watering dessert recipe. I am convinced that anyone who enjoys peanut butter, will definitely want to try this cheesecake. It’s perfect for those hot summer days!
10 Tennis biscuits
100ml Melted Butter
680g Cream Cheese, softened
2 cups Icing Sugar
5ml Vanilla Extract
265g Baking Chocolate, melted
240g Peanut Butter, melted
Place Tennis biscuits into a plastic bag and crush them into fine crumbs with a rolling pin.
Place the tennis biscuit crumbs into a bowl and combine with melted butter, mixing until the texture is much like slightly wet sand.
Press the tennis biscuit crumbs in an even layer into the bottom of a 9-inch (23 cm) spring form pan. Refrigerate.
In a large bowl, mix softened cream cheese until smooth.
Add 1 ½ cups icing sugar and continue to mix until there are no lumps.
Add the vanilla and melted chocolate and mix until the colour is even.
Pour the mixture over the tennis biscuit crust in the spring form pan. Using a spatula or spoon, smooth the top. Refrigerate.
In a large bowl, mix together melted peanut butter and remaining icing sugar.
Pour mixture over cheesecake in spring form pan. Use a knife or spatula to spread evenly and smooth the top.
Refrigerate for 2 to 4 hours.
Serve with Peanut Brittle, or sprinkle with almonds and nuts. Serve and enjoy!
Makes 12 servings.
Serve and enjoy!
All the best till next month