One Night In Auckland!

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On Friday night I was a foodie fan girl and went up to Auckland for the night, the purpose was to see the great man, Jay Rayner. He was in Auckland as part of the Auckland Writers Festival. If you are one of those people who doesn’t know who Jay Rayner is, find out. He has written some excellent books and fabulous restaurant reviews. His talk was about The Ten (Food) Commandments and very amusing.

Whilst up there I had to eat! I travelled with my good friend and fellow foodie Lily, you may know her from NZ Masterchef? It was lovely to travel with someone else who mainly thought about food and the next meal.

Our first stop was for High Tea at The Stamford Plaza, it was a lovely treat and you can read my review for The High Tea Society here. This High Tea was our lunch.

In the evening we headed to Depot Eatery and as we were feeling rather full still we had a big ponder what to order. We decided to eat all the meat. I would recommend the NZ Meat Board, it was all good. The only thing I wasn’t sure about was the rabbit. Not because it was bunny but it was just not my thing. It went especially well with my beer which was served in a little jug with a little glass in a very European fashion.

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After our dinner we wandered around and ended up at in Lorne Street, I think Lily may have had secret plans to get me to try a Taiwanese Dessert. We went to Meet Fresh NZ and I let Lily do the ordering, she wasn’t sure how I would react. The dessert was very different but I liked it. I couldn’t eat a full portion but the black grass jelly, sago, ice and kidney beans were a very nice change and far more edible than they looked. OK, I freaked a little when I dropped a bit of black grass jelly and it looked like a slug. It was great to try something different and be with someone who knew what they were doing.

 

 

After dessert we went to see Jay Rayner, had a walk around night time Queen Street and went back to our room at The Rydges. Yeah, I know, Old.

For breakfast we headed to The Fed. I have been there several times before and do have a bit of a soft spot for the place. We both had the same bottomless coffee, grapefruit with and the excellent Griddle Cakes. I have had the Griddle Cakes 3 times now and each time they have lived up to my memory and been excellent. I  have tried copying them but haven’t got the fluffiness yet, this is my recipe.

I had a lovely night in Auckland and it was lovely to fly home Wellington and the snow capped ranges, the first snow of 2017.

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Co’Ed Cafe on Queens, Lower Hutt- What A Find!

A while ago the Little Cafe popped up by the library and theatre in Lower Hutt. I meant to go when it first opened. It is now The Little Cafe and Co’Ed on Queens . Co’Ed sums up nicely what they are about in their twitter bio

“Coffee, it’s the world in your hands. Our passion is quality barista & cafe training for all, with a focus on diversity in the Coffee Industry”.

It is set partly inside a cafe with tables out in the spacious corridor, it is rather lovely and anyone who misses Reka should head straight there. We enjoyed hotcakes, very good coffee and chatting with a staff member about how she should love her tattoos. She was rather taken aback that I have a half sleeve, work in a bank and am rather older than her. She was lovely.

There is also a Co’Ed on Kings, I will let you know what I think when I go there. I would certainly head back to the Queens cafe and try all the huge slices.

So next time you are in the Hutt, ditch the mall coffee and head on out. that is an order. They are in the Entertainment book under Little Cafe.

Pancake Of The British Kind, 2017.

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I have a good few pancake recipes on here. These were the perfect Pancake Day pancakes. They reminded me of growing up in the UK and it being really cold. Our dinner ladies used to serve them in the playground at playtime and they were so good.

I have to confess to mainly blogging this recipe for me. The original recipe can be found on an excellent blog about all things British – Smitten By Britain. I emailed this to Miss Muffin and Mr jokingly told her to x 3. She did and we ate them all. I may have had 6 but please don’t tell my personal trainer.

Our fillings were the traditional lemon and sugar, coconut and maple syrup, Fix and Fog dark chocolate peanut butter and berries.

Pancake Day - Muffinmum.com

  • Servings: 4-6 people
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Ingredients:

300g plain flour

3 large egg – beaten

600ml milk

300ml water

Pinch of salt

Fillings of your choice

To Make

Sieve the salt and flour

Make a well in the centre

Break the egg into the well and stir with the wooden spoon to make a crumbly mix

Combine the milk and water in a jug

Slowly add to the flour and egg mix, stir constantly to  help avoid lumps

Whisk the mixture to a smooth batter (The mixture is runny as these are not American style)

Heat a fry pan and spray lightly with oil

Ladle enough batter to cover the base of your pan (a 1/3c in our large frypan)

Cook until frilly around the edges and brown in spots appear on the cooked side

They should take 2-3 to cook each pancakes

We made about 18-20 large thin pancakes

Crumpet French Toast, It Really Is A Thing.

 

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Today is Father’s Day here in NZ and that requires bacon being consumed for breakfast. I don’t like bacon, really, really.

I keep a few bits of bread in the freezer so I can have French Toast when the bacon fans do their bacon thing. This morning I decided to be different and try French Toast made with crumpets. This isn’t a sponsored post, I got the damn fine crumpets from the supermarket the other day. This brand is fairly new to the Wellington region and their crumpets are square and taste as good as fresh made ones. Making crumpets is one of those things I can tick off my bucket list and never do again. Button Family Crumpets taste as good and are far less work. These crumpets are square and delicious, I really do recommend them. They made damn fine French toast too.

With the French Toast I did what I would normally do. I would recommend 2 crumpets person and one egg for the mix per person.

Crack an egg into a bowl, lightly whisked.

Added a splash of milk and 1/2 tsp of vanilla essence.

Place crumpets in mix and turn a few times

Melted about 20g butter in a fry pan.

Add crumpets and cook until light brown , flipping a few times.

Serve with fruit and your choice of syrup.

It didn’t seem to make a difference which way up they went in the mix or the pan. They tasted damn fine and did require lashings of maple syrup.I would certainly French Toast my crumpets again, they were very good.

 

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Muesli Pancakes – The All In One Breakfast.

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I have a soft spot for buffet breakfasts and I replay look forward to eating as much as I can in one sitting. I like to start with Muesli, move on to pancakes with fruit and then eat a many pastries as I can.  The odd time I may go for the cooked bits and have a little plate but as I have mentioned before, I am not a fan of bacon.

Just recently we have become a family where everyone likes muesli. It was just my thing and now I have to share. We save it for the weekend to have with some good yoghurt. We have tried several types and keep coming back to the same one. This one is a classic and it vanishes fast. It is the good old Hubbards Simply Toasted Muesli – Original. Hubbards turned 25 this year (2015) and they know what they are doing.

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Our weekend love of muesli and my love of pancakes got me thinking about a way to make the perfect breakfast. Muesli Pancakes sounded like the idea marriage. We enjoy oat pancakes so why not muesli? It worked and I loved getting a little surprise in each bite.

This recipe is perfect for using up that last bit of muesli in the bottom of the bag, not having any wastage is always a good thing.

If the muesli idea doesn’t float your boat, leave it out. These are damn fine panckers.

Muesli Pancakes - Muffinmum.com

2 c Self Raising Flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/4 c caster sugar

Pinch salt

1 1/2 c milk

2 tsp lemon juice/white vinegar

2 eggs

1 tbsp oil (I used canola)

1/2 – 1 c muesli (I used Hubbards Simply Toasted original)

Butter for frying

Heat milk in a jug for around 40 secs in microwave (warm to touch).

Add lemon juice or white vinegar to the milk, this sours it.

In a bowl mix flour, baking powder , caster sugar and pinch of salt.

Add eggs and oil to the milk jug and mix to break up eggs.

Combine the wet mix to the flour and stir until mixed (I used my mixer).

Now add the muesli and stir until all mixed in.

Set aside for around 10 minutes.

Gently heat a large fry pan and add small knob of butter.

Tip the mix into the jug and use this to help tip the pancakes into the pan.

You want a count of about 4 as you tip, I got 3 in each pan.

Turn the pancakes when bubbles start to form.

Keep warm in the grill while you cook the batch.

Eat with fresh fruit and your favourite toppings.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A New Overnight Waffle Recipe, Yes, You Guessed Right, I Added Healtheries Black Chia Seeds

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I have once recipe for overnight waffles blogged already, that recipe is good but this one is better. With this one there is no mixing to do just before cooking and they have that lovely yeasty taste.

I made these in the morning and we had them for tea with lots of fruit in the evening. The overnight part isn’t a rule, just a guideline. I would make sure they have around 5 hours to stand. If you are worried leave them out on the side for the first hour and then pop them in the fridge until you are ready to cook.

The original recipe is from Foodess.com and uses butter. I have decided to be even lazier and use canola oil. The mix is rather runny but they cook to form a nice risen waffle and are a rather lovely golden colour.

Last night I cooked half the batter without the Healtheries Black Chia Seeds, I added around 2 tbsp to the remaining batter. We did a taste test and agreed that it is worth adding a little goodness. The chia does change the texture and adds what is best described as, a nutty hint.

There are seeds in there, honest.

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Overnight Waffle Recipe - Muffinmum.com

  • Servings: around 8-10 waffles
  • Time: 5 hours to rest and then waffle cooking time
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2 1/2 c all-purpose flour

2 heaped tsp yeast (I use dry granules)

1/2 tsp salt

2 tsp ground cinnamon

2 tbsp castor sugar

1/2 c canola oil

2 c milk (I always microwave any milk for around 45 secs to take cold edge off)

 2 eggs lightly beaten

*optional 2-3 tbsp Healtheries Black Chia Seeds

In a large bowl mix flour, yeast, salt, sugar and cinnamon

In another bowl mix the oil, milk and eggs

Make a well in centre of dry ingredients and add wet ingredients

*add optional Healtheries Black Chia Seeds

Whisk together, cover and leave to rest in the fridge

Heat the waffle iron

Whisk again

When iron is ready add around a ladle full of mix

Cook until brown, a good indication is when steam stops

Eat and enjoy

Blueberry Pancakes with Healtheries Black Chia Seeds

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Yes, another pancake recipe and yes, more chia seeds. These chia seeds are so very easy to use and I am really enjoying adding them to everyday things to bump up the nutrition. Have a google, figure out some ways to use them yourself and have a read about the power they pack.I even added 2 teaspoons of ground chia to bind our meatballs for tonight dinner, I still haven’t told the family.

They did know that our Sunday breakfast pancakes had Healtheries Black Chia Seeds in the mix. The pancakes were declared very good and the basic recipe is one I have been tweaking and working on. It was a good batter and made excellent pancakes. I will be using the recipe again and may even up the Chia to 1 1/2 tablespoons.

The seeds aren’t very visible in the photos they all seemed to be inside the pancake. I really like the little crunch the black chia seeds add to this basic pancake recipe.

Blueberry Pancakes with Healtheries Black Chia Seeds- Muffinmum.com

  • Servings: 4-6 people
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1 1/2 c plain flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1 1/4 c buttermilk (or milk with 2 tsp of lemon or white vinegar left to stand for a few minutes)

1 egg lightly beaten

2 tbsp canola oil

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tbsp Healtheries Black Chia Seeds (get brave – make it 1 1/2)

1 cup blueberries fresh or still frozen

In a large bowl combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt

In another bowl mix the milk, egg, oil and vanilla

Stir the wet into the dry until well combined (don’t over mix)

Fold in the chia seeds and blueberries

Heat a fry pan and add a little canola oil

Add batter around 1/4 c at a time, turn when bubble appear

Serve with fruit and maple syrup