All posts tagged: food

Our Growing Edge – February 2017 – Aphrodisiacs!

I hope you had a great start to the year and have kept up with any food related resolutions. February edition of Our Growing Edge is hosted by Amanda from My Everyday Homemade and the theme is APHRODISIACS…just in time for Valentines day. Amanda lives on 8 acres of land in Indiana, US. Her recipes are feed many mouths – as they should be when cooking for 6 people regularly! Check out her charmed life on her Instagram here: https://www.instagram.com/homemade_mama/ If you are embarking on any new food adventures this month, make sure to  share it with Our Growing Edge. Some aphrodisiac-related food adventures you could try this month: Makes something from a fruit or vegetable with a sexy shape (bananas, avocados, figs) Cook with chocolate Shuck an oyster Construct a 3 course meal that can be eaten in bed Host a champagne breakfast Devise a romantic dinner for two Make truffles (chocolate) Cook with truffles (fungi) To submit a post, click on the submission button below: More info on the event can be found here. Last month’s event Last month was hosted by Terri from Food …

Poké face

Poké (pronounced “po–kay”) landed in Auckland last September in the tired underground IMAX food court on Queen Street. My fork buddy and I hit up Poke Time on opening day: bright and little tacky, as Hawaiian-themed things can be, the experience has a Subway vibe and is essentially a build-your-own raw fish salad bowl. You pick whatever you want, although it can be too many decisions for the uninitiated. If you’ve never tried poké before, it can be overwhelming but if you know what you are doing, Poke Time is great value. With heaps of options including salmon, two types of tuna, and trevally, they also have token vegetarian options, but that’s probably not what most will come here for. Tip: go for the seasoned fish, the non-marinated options are essentially sashimi bowls, rather than poké bowls. Poké means “chop” and is a Hawaiian dish influenced by Japanese cuisine. Poké is raw fish (such as tuna, salmon or octopus) is cubed and seasoned with soy sauce, sesame oil, seaweed. Poké is often served served with fresh vegetables and rice …

Our Growing Edge – January 2017 – Healthy Starts

Many of us will begin the year with a food-related resolution. Whatever form your new years resolutions take, there’s no doubt that it can be tricky to start afresh after the decadence of the holiday season. A new year, a new month means a new edition of Our Growing Edge. This blog link up encourages us to try new things in the kitchen, in our bellies and in our every day lives. While I’m not a fan of extreme diets, incorporating whole foods into my diet is absolutely something I can get on board. Fresh produce, fresh fruit, fresh meat and fresh seafood can be super inspiring when it comes to eating well. January 2017 hosted by Terri from Food Meanderings and the theme is HEALTHY STARTS. Hopefully this link up with encourage us to think of healthy, delicious recipes and hold us accountable this month. I look forward to seeing all the delicious ways you start 2017 with. If you are creating any healthy dishes month, share it with Our Growing Edge. Some ideas you could try this month: Experiment with …

Festive Lamb Salad

Hope everyone had a delicious Christmas! We’ve just spent four nights at a bach (kiwi for holiday home) for some family time. We were just a short downhill walk to the centre of Akaroa, a sleepy French harbourside settlement surrounded by dramatic hills. There were barbecues, lots of salads, a glazed ham, whitebait fritters, chocolates, cookies, desserts and just enough chilled beer and wine to wash it all down. I adore glazed ham (call me the queen of ham) and we finished the last of the ham leftovers the night before departure. I am not all hammed out at all. In fact, I’ve been contemplating buying a post-Christmas ham for the two of us to snack on. Maybe after that I shall be satiated. In any case, this festive salad I made earlier this month with lamb steaks could be switched for leftover ham if you happen to have any still left. Just top with sliced ham instead of sliced lamb. Festive lamb salad (or leftover ham salad if you happen to have leftover ham) Serves 2 Ingredients …

Our Growing Edge – December 2016 – Festive Feeds

I am incredulous. How is it December already? Yesterday marked the first day of summer here in the southern hemisphere, which seems upside down to those in the north. Here we like to celebrate the holiday season with beach visits, backyard barbecues and meals eaten al fresco. This is the season for festivities…which leads me to this month’s theme for Our Growing Edge: Festive Feeds. December’s edition of Our Growing Edge is hosted by Rebecca from The Economic Foodie.  Rebecca is an economics grad from Sydney, Australia. The Economic Foodie has been going for a year and a half and includes healthy, wholesome dishes that are gentle on the pocket. Think salads with lots of colour and flavour and mostly (but not strictly) vegetarian recipes. Her mantra “Less waste, more creativity” is great for any time of year, but particularly for December which can be a little more wasteful and indulgent. If you are creating anything delicious for the holiday season, share it with Our Growing Edge. Some ideas you could try this month: Invent a recipe using up holiday leftovers Make an edible gift Host a …

Tofu Tuesday: Serious

We had the pleasure of trying some of Serious Popcorn’s newest flavour: Coconut and Vanilla. With a light flavour a hint of salt and not too sweet, this is great guilt-free snacking. Co-founder of Stolen Rum (see previous Tofu Tuesday: Stolen edition here), Roger Holmes now peddles organic popcorn in three flavours and cutesy packaging. Serious Popcorn are serious about being organic, non GMO, dairy and gluten free and all ingredients 100% traceable from farm to bag. No rabbits were involved in the serious task of snack tasting. Click here to see more editions of Tofu Tuesday.

Anatomy of a platter with Lisa’s Hummus (and a giveaway)

  Summer is at our doorstep At our place, sunny days often lead to long evenings in the backyard. Grazing platters are great for easy weeknight dinners. Bring out your speakers, throw a forgiving tablecloth over your weathered outdoor table and delight in the warm weather. I keep a few platter-friendly bits and pieces on hand in case of unexpected guests or for days when I don’t feel like cooking. Put together a simple platter for two with just a few items foraged from your fridge or pump it with more items when catering for many mouths. Platters are super easy to scale up or down and if there’s more than 5 people at the table, it’s a good idea to make a couple of smaller platters so everyone can have easy access. Lisa’s make entertaining easy with their range of delicious hummus and dips. When it comes to platters, colour is important and I’ve picked my favourite beautifully colourful dips from the Lisa’s Hummus range: Chargrilled Capsicum, Basil Pesto, and Beetroot with Roasted Cashews. …

Taste of Auckland 2016 – the run down

Taste of Auckland is here and last night, my fork buddies and I braved the weather to enjoy opening night. The promise of rain might have kept the crowds away and while the weather was nowhere near as horrendous as Taste 2014, we were glad we wore gumboots as it drizzled later in the night. There are 5 more sessions to go over the next 3 days and with many different areas and entertainment to keep you busy, there’s something for every shade of foodie. Even those who hate the term “foodie”. Taking photos of your food is 100% acceptable at Taste, some of the servers even made styling suggestions when I asked if I could take photos. I love how Taste is a shared communal experience and it’s totally OK to ask complete strangers about the food they’re enjoying. A stranger at Taste is a fork buddy you haven’t met yet. Once again, a well run festival, easy to navigate and meander around. No queues when we went meaning more time to enjoy the festival. Great atmosphere, delicious food, tastings and …

Around the world with Lisa’s World of Flavours (and a giveaway)

I haven’t eaten EVERYTHING…but it’s on my list. Food tourism is on the rise and eating one’s way around the world is a legit pastime. New flavours, ingredients, and cooking techniques are my favourite travel souvenirs to bring home. I love being inspired by cuisines from around the world and until my next overseas adventure, I bring little slices of the world into my kitchen through food. Lisa’s new World of Flavours range takes iconic flavour combinations and re-imagines them as dips. Lisa’s Hummus is already a household name in NZ and the new range is made with beans instead of chickpeas and is gluten free and vegetarian. These dips make it easy to add an exotic touch to some of your favourite meals. There are 3 flavours in the World of Flavours range (so far): Greek Yoghurt Dip – lightly creamy with the fresh taste of mint and lemon. Great on sandwiches or burgers, as a spread or topping, perfect for summer barbecues. Thai Sriracha Dip (my favourite) – with sweet chilli and roasted capsicum, this …

Winner of $150 New World voucher

Hope everyone had a lovely weekend. With a big thank you to the New World Wine Awards I am pleased to announce the winner of the $150 New World voucher giveaway. The winner is… *drumroll please* Orlene Enoka! Congratulations! I hope you enjoy creating your own gourmet adventure with New World. Thanks to all who entered and if you missed out, don’t be sad,  I have more giveaways coming up so make sure you stay up to date with this blog and my giveaways by following my Facebook page here. This post was made possible by the good folks at the New World Wine Awards. Opinions are my own.

Te Matuku Oyster Festival and a deep fried oyster recipe

The Koala and I had the pleasure of attending the Te Matuku Oysters on Waiheke on Saturday thanks to Jenny’s Tamarind Chutney and Te Matuku Oysters. Our first festival of any kind since last summer, the weather held up – aside from a couple of light showers, it felt like summer. Waiheke is an island just a 35 minute ferry ride from downtown Auckland with loads of pristine beaches, a warm Mediterranean micro-climate and a focus on growing quality food and wine. We started with a delightful pilsner from Albi Brewing Company and a complimentary 3 oysters each. We were in oyster heaven and gobbled up more than our share and at festival special prices, it didn’t hurt the wallet one bit. If you love oysters the festival is time to gorge yourself on fresh, plump oysters. If your preference is natural with a squeeze of lemon (or Worcestershire sauce or vinaigrette), then shucked oysters are just $20 per dozen. To give you an idea of market price, a local restaurant sells the same oysters at $48 per dozen. …

Our Growing Edge – November 2016 Intro

November edition of Our Growing Edge is hosted by Alicia from Alicia’s Bits n Bobs. Just a reminder: Our Growing Edge is the part of us that is still learning and experimenting. It’s the part that you regularly grow and improve, be it from real passion or a conscious effort. This monthly event aims to connect and inspire us to try new things and to compile a monthly snapshot of what food bloggers are getting up to. So if you don’t already have a foodie bucket list, it’s time to write one. Feel free to browse my list for  some ideas. Some ideas you could try this month: Learn a new technique Reverse engineer a dish from your favourite restaurant Cross something off your bucket list Cook something new out of an old cookbook Try a new cuisine To submit a post, click on the submission button below: More info on the event can be found here. Last month’s event October was hosted by Annika from We Must Be Dreamers. Check out her round up of all the HALLOWEEN submissions on her blog later this month. Below is a preview …

Learning to shuck oysters and a recipe for Oysters Tamarind Kilpatrick

From my father, I inherited a fierce love for fresh oysters. If there was ever a moment I didn’t love raw oysters, I don’t remember it. As a kid, I ate my weight in oysters and any buffet worth visiting had fresh oysters in it’s offerings. Those in our family who loved them would eat a plate piled high. As a young adult, I once (or twice) turned up to family gatherings armed with several dozen shucked oysters on a polystyrene box, knowing they would go down a treat. Oysters are cheaper and fresher if you shuck them yourself but I’d never shucked oysters before. I vaguely remember my uncle wrestling with oysters but that didn’t interest me as a kid – I just wanted to eat them. In anticipation of the Te Matuku Oyster Festival on Waiheke this Saturday, I had the opportunity to shuck and cook up some plump Waiheke oysters. I’m no pro yet, so I won’t be sharing any shucking tips but I watched a bunch of Youtube videos (including this …

Gold reds with easy tapas and $150 New World voucher giveaway

As a graphic designer I’m often attracted to beautifully designed labels…but if I’m deliberating between two bottles of wine, the one with a little gold sticker gets the final say. I usually buy wine on special in the $10 to $15 range. If I’m feeling fancy, or buying a wine for a BYO birthday dinner I’ll upgrade to a $20 to $25 bottle. I don’t often go over that because I don’t have to – there are delightful wines to be had for under $25. The New World Wine Awards takes wine just seriously enough for your garden variety wine drinker. They’ve just announced their Gold, Silver and Bronze winners – all under $25. A panel of experts double-blind taste test over a thousand wines so you can be confident that the hard yards of wine tasting has been done for you. Thanks to the New World Wine Awards, I have a $150 New World voucher to give away so you can embark on your own gourmet adventure. Look for the gold sticker next time …

Tofu Tuesday: Food Writers NZ Conference

Last Friday I went along to the Food Writers New Zealand Conference at Villa Maria with fellow food bloggers Ari from Ari Eats and Rhi from In Rhi’s Pantry. The goodie bags were AMAZING. I have to admit, we’ve already eaten almost half the goods so Tofu the bunny models just a portion of the goodie bag goodies for you today. There were a couple of other food bloggers there, and of course, food writers, chefs, and others in the food production, education and community sectors. The keynote speaker was Jonathan Bloom, journalist, consultant, writer and blogger over at WastedFood.com talking about wasted food. As a food blogger – and I’m sure I am not alone in this – I’m often gifted food that I wouldn’t normally purchase and the majority of gifted food doesn’t end up on this blog. If I’m not going to eat it myself, I always do my best to find that food a new home. I know the diets and preferences of friends and family and I’ve yet to come …

Taste of Auckland 2016 is coming and a giveaway

Happy Friday everyone! We’re about halfway through October already and I am loving day light savings time. Longer evenings and we’re actually getting more sunny days than rainy days. November is my favourite month and not just because it’s my birthday (although that certainly helps). November means that my favourite festival of delicious proportions, Taste of Auckland is back for the eighth year in a row. Thanks to Taste of Auckland in partnership with Electrolux, I have three double passes to give away to three lucky readers (Total value $150). To enter, fill in the entry form at the bottom of this post including a skill question: Adriano Zumbo will be demonstrating at Electrolux Taste Theatre on which 2 days? The answer can be found here. Running from Thursday 17 to Sunday 20 November 2016 and once again at Western Springs, Taste of Auckland will be settling in for 6 sessions over 4 days of al fresco dining with wine and cocktails. If I gush a bit in this post, please understand I am a Taste fan girl. I …

Chicken hand pies and a Freedom Farms giveaway

At the beginning of 2016 when bloggers everywhere were sharing their New Year resolutions, I shared my list of 5 things I wanted to do more and less of during 2016. One item on my list was “free range”. Animal welfare is important to me and I eat free range whenever I can. As of this year, I only buy free range pork, chicken and eggs. The good thing is, eating free range has become increasingly affordable and accessible as more consumers demand it. Full disclaimer, I relax this when eating out and would never even mention it if someone were awesome enough to cook for me. There’s a difference between showing integrity and being a dick. I hope free range becomes the norm in our lifetime and maybe one day we don’t have to worry about it at all. Until then, it’s good to keep track of accessible free range products. Freedom Farms is one of NZ’s most trusted free range brands and their streaky bacon (YUM!) is always on my shopping list. When I heard they launched a …

Burrata for NZ Cheese Month

Happy NZ Cheese Month! I was over the moon last month when I joined a bunch of cheese-loving media on a NZ Cheese road trip. We visited some great local cheese makers, tasted some amazing and some polarising cheese and even met a lovely herd of water buffalo north of Auckland in Whangaripo. One of our stops was at Il Casaro, located in Glenfield in an unexpectedly industrial area proving that cheese needn’t be made out in the countryside to be good. Here we witnessed Italian cheese maker and co-founder Massimiliano make mozzarella by hand as he explained the process and treated us to freshly made cheese. New Zealand cheese is nothing short of phenomenal. The quality and creativity of our cheese is absolutely good enough for the world market, but many small producers can only meet the demand of our local appetites. This means that our very best cheese actually stays in the country. A win for us. In honour of NZ Cheese Month this month, I had the pleasure of trying this organic …

Our Growing Edge – October 2016 Intro

October edition of Our Growing Edge is hosted by Annika from We Must Be Dreamers. Theme: Halloween   This month’s theme can be as literal or as abstract as you like. Just imagine the final round up as an epic Halloween pot luck spanning food blogs from around the world! Some ideas you could try this month: Make a Halloween treat Pumpkin spice something Cook a dish that uses only Fall colours Host a Halloween-themed dinner party Cook with an ingredient that could be considered slightly horrifying Invent a Halloween cocktail To submit a post, click on the submission button below: More info on the event can be found here. Last month’s event September was hosted by Chrystal from The Smallwood Parsonage. Check out her round up of all the yummy FAMILY RECIPE submissions on her blog later this month. Below is a preview of just some of the FAMILY RECIPE submissions.

Tamarind chutney and blue cheese pizza

Happy Friday guys! Just a quickie recipe for a Friday when you can’t really be bothered cooking but don’t feel like takeaways either. Read on for punchy flavour, minimal fuss. This recipe is super easy and uses Jenny’s Tamarind Chutney, a locally made product with a loyal following. With a tangy sweet flavour and plenty of spice, this chutney elevates the simplest dishes. I tried Jenny’s Tamarind Chutney a few years ago at a food festival and it’s one of those products that keeps popping up in food magazines. My friends and family RAVE about this chutney so I’m not surprised it’s currently in the running for Bite’s People’s Choice Awards. Make sure you vote before 25 September because every vote goes into the draw to win $250 to spend at The Sugar Club. Enter your vote here. It’s weird to think that 6 years ago when I started this blog, I hated blue cheese. As in, “Ewww gross, get that stuff away from me”. In that short space of time, my palate has changed and developed …