Saturday, April 30, 2011
Monday, April 25, 2011
Libby: When I stayed with my friend Rebecca in France last year she cooked delicious osso bucco in a beautiful heavy cast iron Staub pan. I wanted on but there was no way I could bring one home with me (I estimate they weigh upwards of 5kg). I looked into buying one once home and found they were in the region of $500-600 NZD! So I checked out the Peter's of Kensington website - a fantastic kitchen/homeware store in Sydney with super-discounted prices - and found this lovely green cocette for under $200 NZD. I ordered it, had it sent to a friend in Sydney and collected it when there last week. The green was much cheaper than any other colour but I love it - I think of it as "feijoa" green!
Becs: I love these packs of Mainland sliced swiss cheese. I know it's not quite gruyere but it has a similar sweet nutty taste and melts beautifully. Perfect in a simple grilled cheese sandwich, one of my favourite lazy meals. I have been craving French onion soup since our dinner at Plum Kitchen last week, so made some to eat over the Easter weekend (which has been unseasonably hot here in Christchurch so not ideal for such comfort food, but it was enjoyed none the less!)
Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Daisy and I paid a visit to Hokitika last week, to commemorate the opening of the school's new Food Technology room, a project Mike had been passionate about, and catch up with friends. The weather was beautiful, Daisy and Heidi loved roaming around the beach after a lunch of fish and chips from the little shop near the wharf.
I also took the opportunity to stock up on some of my favourite West Coast provisions - including a date loaf from Blanchy's bakery in Greymouth, purveyors of old school baking at its best. This delicious family-sized loaf will set you back a grand total of $6.50...
Blanchy's loaf is perfect spread with the beautiful export-quality Westgold butter. Made in the milk factory in Hokitika from West Coast milk, it is a treat. The farm shop near the BP station sells it from a fridge, I don't think you can buy it anywhere else in NZ as it gets shipped overseas. I have a few blocks tucked away in the fridge for 'special occasions' deemed worthy of warranting its use!
Finally, the cupboard has been replenished with our favourite tomato sauce from Woodstock Kitchen. Mike and I used to go through bucketloads of this, buying it from the local Four Square. This time the dairy was out of stock, but I managed to locate the producer, and we paid a visit to the commercial kitchen tucked under her house. (Spick and span and a great set-up, I confess to some kitchen envy!) The old fashioned tomato sauce is my go-to condiment, I have tried unsuccessfully to recreate it at home, so half a dozen bottles happily found their way into my suitcase. So far you can just buy it in Hoki, but if you are curious to try it email Anna on firstname.lastname@example.org and she can arrange to send some.
Monday, April 18, 2011
1/4 c vege oil
Thursday, April 14, 2011
Monday, April 11, 2011
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
Monday, April 4, 2011
Becs: A few of my favourite things feature in the picture above - homemade oat crackers and quince paste, crisp new seasons apples and Mainland Vintage Cheddar. This cheese has been matured for a couple of years and has the delicious sharp tang and crumbly texture to prove it. It gives the pricey posh waxed cheddars in the specialty cheese bar a run for their money; this one is found with the block cheese and goes for about $10 for half a kilo, a bargain for the quality I reckon.Daisy enjoyed a trip out to the Dunsandel Store for lunch today, where she found an enormous apple under the tree outside and proceeded to alternately nibble it and chase it around the floor of the cafe... and we all love her cool pants that arrived in the post from Aunty Libby last week, found at a pop-up shop in Wellington. Libby: More often than not, I use plain old Maggi powdered stock for cooking but when a recipe calls "best-quality" stock I like to use these fresh stocks from Foundation Foods. At $3.60 for a 500ml pouch, it's reasonably-priced given it's of homemade quality. Foundation Foods are a Christchurch-based company and their website doesn't seem to be working so I hope they're OK post-earthquake. Moore Wilson's chiller seemed to be well-stocked(!) with Foundation Food products on the weekend so that's a good sign. Call 0508 STOCKS to find a stockist near you.
Miriam: This weekend marks the end of daylight savings. This lovely tree (it's not a liquid amber, but I think it's something similar) in our garden is a constant reminder of the change of season, as each day the leaves turn slightly more yellow. The shorter and colder days can be slightly depressing. So in an exercise in positive psychology, I've made a list of all my favourite things about the colder months. Here's what I've come up with to date; please feel free to add to the list:
- crumbles, sticky date and self saucing puddings
- mulled wine
- cosy fires
- boots & scarves
- the crisp morning air & lovely golden late afternoon sunlight
- crunchy autumn leaves
- fejoas & passionfruit
- posh porridge!