At the end of each year, I look back on all the food I made on Drizzleanddip and make a list of the 10 most delicious recipes. It’s a tough thing to do because all the food is delicious otherwise it wouldn’t be here in the first place. I’m talking about the recipes that have shone over and above the others and the ones I will make again and again. The sure-fire winners and the ones that keep me up at night as I imagine eating them again. 

If you want to check out my best recipes for previous years – because they are all still relevant and super delicious you can find them for 2016, 2015 and 2014.

This year was of those years that was neither bad nor particularly wonderful. It had an amazing highlight, aka my trip to Italy, but for the rest, it sort of ticked over with no major stand out moments. I have a long list of resolutions that tend to roll from year to year and stay in my mind. They are more a set of loose goals that I should probably solidify by writing down and taking more seriously. I often feel like I’m floating around making things up as I go vs being strategic, and I have been very lucky that things always work out. Next year I have a few firmer objectives for what I want to achieve both personally and professionally so I definitely have my work cut out for me. I’m still planning on finding and making the most delicious recipes, maybe even more so, and am committed to delivering the best quality content I can. A few things need to change too. We only really grow when we take ourselves out of our comfort zones.

I’ll kick off the best of 2017 with the sweet ones first so keep scrolling down until you see something you like. You will see that fennel features strongly because I’m a little obsessed at the moment. I hope you have a very happy new year and thanks for stopping by at DrizzleandDip, I so love having you visit my site.  

Pear and halva crumble loaf with pecans, honey & maple

I think this might be my favourite recipe of the year. It’s a perfect loaf recipe that includes so many flavours and elements that I love without it being too sweet. It’s a recipe which I’ve slightly adapted from Donna Hay that uses Halva as the fat element, hitting the global trend of using tahini in baking recipes head on. I’m planning on adapting it using tahini instead of halva and experimenting with other fruit. 

Pear and halva crumble loaf with pecans, honey & maple

Gooey butter cake

I made gooey butter cake for the first time this year and let’s just say I’ll be making it again in my future. A few friends made this recipe too and were smitten, so those votes of confidence ensure its place on this list. 

A very delicious gooey butter cake

Lemon meringue cheesecake

This recipe takes the best of two of my favourite dessert recipes and combines them into one. I’ve made it in a pressure cooker and a slower cooker to take all the fuss out of the prep. A gigantic mountain of Italian meringue are essential here. 

Lemon meringue cheesecake made in a slow & pressure cooker

Orange & Campari cake

Straight out of the beautiful Venetian cookbook Polpo, this cake is delectable with a lovely bitterness making it ever so grown up. 

orange & campari cake from Polpo

Easy madeleines with lavender & lemon sugar

This is the easiest and nicest recipe for Madeleine’s that I have found thus far and will be my go-to for the future. You could easily adapt other flavours to this recipe.

An easy recipe for madeleines with lavender & lemon sugar

Avocado, fennel and orange salad

This is so simple and so wonderful I want to eat it all the time.

a delicious avocado & orange salad recipe with fennel

New potato salad with fennel & radish

I loved the two separate components that make up this incredible salad. Smoked paprika giving earthy heat to the new potatoes, and the lemony fennel and radish adding freshness and crunch. Its a total winner.

New potato salad with fennel & radish | DrizzleandDip

Trout en papillote with fennel and tomato

This year I discovered the wonders of the home cooking delivery service called UCOOK and this was an absolute winning recipe of theirs. I’ve made it again and it’s simply sublime and also really healthy. The smashed new potatoes with creme fraiche that go with it is also divine. 

trout en papillote with fennel and tomato

Creamy oven risotto with spinach, roasted cauliflower & sage

If the pear & halva loaf was my favourite sweet recipe from 2017 then this oven baked risotto was my favourite savoury one. I’ve made it a few times and it’s a vegetarian gem. I also loved the oven technique for risotto making which is much less work than labouring over the stove. 

creamy oven risotto with spinach, roasted cauliflower & sage

Roast chicken with orange & ginger

This delicious roast chicken recipe adapted from Diana Henry is a keeper and one you will want to slot into your repertoire.

roast chicken with orange & ginger

Mussels, leeks & bacon on sourdough toast

This is the 11th but I couldn’t leave it out. It’s a recipe is from Giles Edwards from La Tete (one of my favourite Cape Town restaurants) and I love it to smithereens. Its cheffy and a little complicated but well worth all the effort. 

mussels, leeks and bacon on sourdough toast


A few other notable mentions:

Chargrilled zucchini hummus My new favourite hummus, just yum!

Menemen – Turkish scrambled eggs My new best way to scramble eggs.

Thai green papaya salad I’m so excited we can finally get green papayas here.

Quick & easy lemon chicken Who doesn’t love an incredibly quick lemony chicken recipe?

The best Mexican esquites salad  I adore the crunchy texture of this warm sald with all those South American flavours. Yum!


Find me on Instagram










  1. Dear Sam, I want to thank you for bringing me happiness throughout 2017. I am a Saffer (read South African expat) who is now a proud Australian. That does not mean I am not proud to be born in South Africa, just proud that my children have a future over here. I will always care for the country of my birth, I just want to give my children a chance in life, and I must admit to not missing the security. Our home now is open to the street with no gate, no burglar proofing, no security gates etc. (Sorry we were from Jo’burg, I know Cape Town is better) We feel very free and safe over here, the kids are thriving at Uni – my daughter just represented her Uni at the United Nations Student Conference – my son has a scholarship doing AI Computer Science, opportunities we would not have received in ZAR – we are truly blessed. Now no politics – lets move on, wish everyone well and I am no political activist just a Mom sharing background. Sam, I so enjoy the way you write, the care you take with your work, your skill, thank you for all your posts – I enjoy everything about them, You are very gifted both as a cook and a photographer and a writer. I am truly grateful for your work, and cannot wait for 2018’s posts! Kind regards, Donnee

  2. Hi I’m was wondering if you had the recipe for the brown bread loaf (in above photo) which looks like it has pumpkin seeds and raisins/sultanas in please.
    Many thanks.

  3. Sam

    Hi Tracy, I link to all he recipes in the above post. Just click on the recipe title

  4. Sam

    Hi Donnee, thank you for the kind words and Im so happy you enjoy the recipes on D & D :). I really appreciate this note of thanks more than words can say. I think you are definitely doing the right thing bringing up your children in a country with better politics and better prospects all round. South Africa is not an easy place to live and our future is very insecure. All the best for 2018 and I can’t wait to share more delicious ideas.

Leave a Reply