Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Co-Post: Alli & Nigel’s Lavender Martini

There are times when I enjoy a good martini. I've noticed too that after my third, a mysterious transformation takes place: I begin channeling the voice of actor Sean Connery's most famous character, James Bond - master spy and fan of the vodka martini. Unfortunately, the channeling degenerates rapidly from rougish Scottish burr to full scale slurring, complete with stumbling actions. Nevertheless, the martini remains a favourite of mine.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Juliet & Romeo

Clean, grassy and with a citrus finish, this is the perfect drink for a hot summer's day.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The White Lady Pie Cart

Where do you go in Auckland when you feel like a late night scoff? One place in particular has satisfied the growling bellies of many a drunk, clubber, shift worker, insomniac and combinations thereof over the past few decades. And it's not on Twitter...

Thursday, January 14, 2010

My Secret Blackberry Stash, continued...

My blackberries, eight days ago, and now:

Grow my pretties, grow! Grow like the invasive weed that you are!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Make Your Own Branding Iron

"Make your own branding iron?", you say? Absolutely! Using materials found lying around the house, you too can act out those fantasies of riding, roping and branding people who pop their collars delicious cuts of meat! Watch your next barbecue take on the sights and sounds of a genuine Texan ranch.

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Apricot Sorbet

Baby Alaskas with Brandied Apricots - the picture in the recipe book looked quite impressive and the recipe didn't seem that hard to follow. The first step required softened ice cream, so I pulled it from the freezer as required, then popped outside to hang out the washing. I promptly forgot all about the ice cream and went into town for some lunch (and to ransack the $10 DVD bin at The Warehouse). Upon discovering the small pond which had formed on the counter and kitchen floor when I got back, I realised it was time to reconsider the project...

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

My Secret Blackberry Stash

See the little green dot? That's a drupelet, the first of the many individual fruits that make up a blackberry! This is my secret blackberry bush, located on Tracy Island, next to the paddock where Shergar is presently grazing. There are drupelets all over the bush so it's been well pollinated. I'll be swimming in blackberrys soon and I have a few things I want to make, such as cordial and jam, and maybe some special treats. Birds love them too so I'll be covering it up with old vineyard bird netting, but I'll leave part of it exposed for them. There'll be more on this soon, so watch this space...

Monday, January 04, 2010

To Dry For - Designer Tea Towels

Three words: buy, their, stuff! To Dry For are a small UK-based boutique business who have the most amazing, eclectic and unique range of tea towels available for sale. Employing the talents of an array of British artists and designers, why should you put up with the same old bog-standard chequered nonsense in your kitchen? The prices are pretty good too.

Mr T (towel) -
I came across them in the process of looking for a birthday present - aren't they brilliant! And such a clever concept for a business. I'm going to buy a few as art! Check out their range of tea towels at their website, visit their blog and follow them on twitter.

Saturday, January 02, 2010


Nothing beats spending a warm, languid summer's evening down at the creek catching eels. Just remember that if you're wanting to create fond memories of the event, coat your legs in insect repellent before embarking on your expedition; acting as a mobile buffet for the local insect life may thrill them to bits, but it will sorely test your endurance. By the end of the evening, my legs resembled the ravaged neck of a horny teenager.

Friday, January 01, 2010

Cleaning Steel Pans

We use small, pressed steel pans at the restaurant for general purpose cooking; beef, salmon, fish of the day and so on. Over time, grease and carbon accumulate on the pan's surface despite frequent cleaning, which causes food to stick and burn. To remedy this, we use rock salt and heat to clean the pan, readying it for re-seasoning.