It’s believed that the Khoikhoi were the first to use waterblommetjies as a food source. The aponogeton distachyos flowers (less poetically known as Cape pondweed, Cape hawthorn or Cape asparagus) grow naturally in dams and marshes throughout the Western Cape during the months of July and August and are commonly stewed with lamb to make waterblommetjiebredie.
In August, several restaurants on the Paarl Wine Route have incorporated the traditional South African delicacy into their menus. Participating restaurants include Harvest @ Laborie, Bosman’s Restaurant at Grande Roche, Rhebokskloof Restaurant, and eat@simonsvlei.
To end off the season, Windmeul Cellar and Rhebokskloof Estate will host their fourth annual Waterblommetjie Festival on 6 September 2014.
At Rhebokskloof, the festival will run from 10am to 4pm, and will include waterblommetjiebredie for sale, kids’ entertainment and wine tasting. There will be a Miss Waterblommetjie pageant for girls aged 4 to 10 at 11am; a cooking demonstration with Stir Foods’s Chef Gustaaf at midday; and a live screening of the SA vs Australia rugby game at 2pm. The estate’s mountain biking track will also be open for the duration of festivities.
Windmeul cellar will host a farmer’s market from 8am to 12.30pm and farm breakfasts from 8am. There will also be a waterblommetjie potjiekos demonstration and competition, wine pairing presented by the cellar master and wine maker, and live music. Wine sales will be available from 9am, with a 10% discount on all wine purchases.