A bunch of foodies and bloggers got up super early this morning and enjoyed some delicious treats.
In honour of National Nut Day, I was invited to eat nuts (literally) and chew the fat (not literally) with other food enthusiasts at Mondays Whole Foods in Kingsland. Mondays is the efforts of two local bloggers Eleanor Ozich from blog Petite Kitchen and Hannah Horton from blog Health Yeah. Mondays is a lovely light-filled space and an inspiration to bloggers everywhere (who dream of one day transforming their blog into a full time business).
We even got a surprise visit from a 75 foot tall squirrel (slight exaggeration).
I was way too excited to have my photo taken with him. It was like Disneyland 2009 all over again.
Yummiest dish: Apple and rhubarb crumble, slivered almonds, cocoa nutty topping.
I left Mondays well caffeinated, inspired and full of nuts.
National Nut Day is a day of celebrating the humble, nutritious nut. What ever your favourite nut is, why not indulge a little today?
Uh oh, another surgery
So…last week, Tofu’s corneal ulcer went from completely healed to a brand new corneal ulcer followed by a very bad infection. A corneal ulcer is just a fancy word for a scratch on the surface of the eye. With a blind eye that is constantly open, it is prone to things poking in there and scratching the surface which can quickly lead to infection. By quickly, I mean quickly! On Thursday it was decided by the vet he must have his eye removed (enucleation).
Today is National Nut Day and here is a recipe I adapted from Chocolate and Zucchini’s Easy Candied Almonds and Hazelnuts recipe here.
Thanks to Alison’s Pantry, I had some almonds and cashews to experiment with this month. Alison’s Pantry offer a bulk food range in New Zealand supermarkets. Great if you just want raw ingredients without the fancy packaging. Alison Holst is the Mother of New Zealand cooking and growing up, every mum in New Zealand followed her trusted recipes.
I thought it would be fun to a bit of spice to the recipe and one spice blend I always have in the cupboard is Garam Masala. There are as many Garam Masala recipes as there are Indian families, but a typical mix contains cardamom, turmeric, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, ginger and peppercorns. You can make your own blend or just buy a blend from the store (like I do). I’ve just used 1/2 a teaspoon of Garam Masala which adds a warm spice.
Sugar and Spice Candied Nuts
Makes 2 cups
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 1 cup whole almonds*
- 1 cup whole cashews*
- A pinch of sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon Garam Masala
- Preheat the oven to 150°C / 300°F and line a roasting tray with with baking paper.
- In a small saucepan, add the sugar and a tablespoon of water. Bring to the boil and remove from heat once all sugar is dissolved.
- Add the nuts and stir until nuts are evenly coated. Pour onto the prepared tray and spread out into a single layer. Sprinkle with salt and spice.
- Bake for 20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, until the nuts are coated with a sugar and spice crust.
- Cool completely before transferring to an airtight jar.
*Feel free to substitute with whatever nuts you have available.
Enjoy these with a cup of tea or use as a topping on ice cream, waffles, french toast, cake. You’ll probably lose a few for taste testing purposes as they cool. It’s OK. There’s plenty!
Sweet New Zealand
I’m submitting this post as part of Sweet New Zealand, a monthly collection of sweet recipes from kiwi bloggers. This month’s host is Lesley from Eat, Etc…
I’m loving this design for 2009 R. Müller Riesling by Octavin. Also known as “bunny wine” and produced from grapes grown in the Landwein Rhine region of Germany and is a sweet reisling.
Octavin have a 3L range of octagonal boxed wines for their Home Wine Bar range which can be opened and drunk over a period of 4 weeks without degradation of quality. Aimed at the hosting at home market, I think you’ll appreciate the thought that has gone into this design. One box equals 4 bottles and at $24US a box this bunny wine works out to around $0.75 a glass.
Boxed wine has quite a notorious reputation here in New Zealand as a cheap way to get drunk. The last time I bought boxed wine, a certain someone ended up drinking the wine straight from the tap…for breakfast…washed down with sunscreen. I’m pretty sure that is not a serving suggestion.
With special thanks to Lemongrass Productions, I am pleased to announce the winners for the Taste of Auckland double passes.
Drawn by Random.org, the winners are…
**drum roll please!**
Right by my work at the top of Mt Eden Road is the hilariously named “Wang Mart” – a Korean grocery shop selling mostly Korean goods. Within the shop is a counter where a lady makes kim-chi all day and sells a small selection of fresh vegetables. A kilo tub of her kim-chi will set you back a measly $8NZ. I’m no kim-chi expert, but I know a bargain when I see one. Continue reading
Since I was diagnosed with Graves disease earlier this year, I’ve been eating more whole foods and incorporating nuts into my diet. I replaced the instant noodles in my desk drawer with a box of mixed nuts. Brazil nuts come highly recommended for Graves disease patients because they contain high amount of selenium so I always make sure there is a generous quota of Brazil nuts in my mix.
The Nation’s Nuts
National Nut Day falls on Tuesday 21 October 2014 and is a day which celebrates the humble and nutritious nut. Nuts are great for you and the NZ Nutrition Foundation recommends a handful of nuts per day. With vitamins, minerals, fibre and protein, nuts make a guilt free, low maintenance snack. Continue reading