Category Archives: recipe

4 for OCT

November 10, 2014

I LOVE seeing things being made and shared using the #weekendscollected tag on instagram and thought I would start sharing four of my favourites each month.

Here’s four from October:


1 // @xantheb’s son Cosmo makes bread. 2 // @rachlees89 makes the windfall apple cake that @circleofpines shared the recipe for. 3 // @soulaperture has a man that makes her breakfast on the weekends! 4 // @nina_nixon’s italian hot chocolate.

Do you have a recipe or weekend you’d like to share? Visit the submit page for all the details and get writing / creating – we’d love to have you join us.

On instagram? Tag your photos with #weekendscollected.

The Lewis Road Creamery Chocolate Milk Craze

October 25, 2014

It appears Lewis Road Creamery has a hit on their hands. They normally make high-end (expensive, organic, somewhat hipster) butter and milk, and they teamed up with Whittaker’s to make a chocolate milk. It’s got to the point where most stockists sell out within hours. In the time it took me to buy a few bits at my local fruit and veg shop (RAW, the only ones on Waiheke Island who sell it), two people came in to ask if they had any. “No, it comes in on Wednesday” was the reply, tho they should have added “and it’ll be gone on Wednesday”, too.

Stuff had this to say:


A north Waikato milk producer has been churning out Lewis Road Creamery Fresh Chocolate Milk as fast as it can make it, but scarce supply has resulted in customers waiting at supermarkets to snap up fresh deliveries.

Lewis Road Creamery’s Angela Weeks said a small team was working around the clock to make as much chocolate milk as it could, going through 3000 kilograms of Whittaker’s five roll refined creamy milk chocolate and 24,000 litres of milk a week.

Havelock North New World owner-operator Richard Lucas said the supermarket received 90 bottles this morning.

The chocolate milk was one of the fastest-selling new products he had seen for a long time.

“It has been a phenomenon,” he said.

The store was selling 300-millilitre bottles for $3.59 and 750ml bottles for $6.29.

The normal price of a bottle of their milk is around $4.50. Non-organic, regular milk is around $2/L. And also:

Security guards have been employed to monitor supermarket fridges containing Lewis Road Creamery Fresh Chocolate Milk as customer demand continues to froth over.

Since the chocolate milk went on sale three weeks ago, demand has been so great that customers are queuing up for fresh deliveries, purchase limits have been put in place at supermarkets, and security guards are being employed to watch over fridges containing the chocolate gold.

Being a bit of a choc-o-phile, I thought that it shouldn’t be too hard to make my own. Turns out, it’s not.

I have previous experience making chocolate ganache and truffles, so if you haven’t, just take your time, and remember two things: chocolate melts quickly and at fairly low temperatures, and oil (chocolate/milk fat) and water don’t mix, so keep your equipment as dry as you can. It’s not as important with this recipe as it is when making truffles, but it’s a good habit to get into.

The only downside of this is the cost. The LRC chocolate milk sells for $6.30, but once you add in the cost of the milk (about $4.50) and chocolate ($3.50) you’re already over budget. However, given how hard it is to find it at any price….

What you need to make your own:


  • A 750ml bottle of Lewis Road Creamery non-homogenised milk. This could work with any kind of milk, but go for the maximum fat content that you can find. If you have a friend with a dairy farm, get it off them.
  • 75g of good quality chocolate. I used Green and Blacks 85%, but only because my local supermarket was sold out of Whittaker’s and it was the smallest bar of good quality chocolate I could find. In hindsight, it’s a bit dark and bitter for this, so I’d recommend around 100g of Whittaker’s 60% Dark Chocolate if you prefer your chocolate milk less sweet and more bitter, and maybe a 35-40% milk chocolate if you prefer it a little sweeter.

Thats it. Like the best recipes, it has very few ingredients. By comparison, the “real thing” has 86% milk and 13% chocolate, with a little cocoa powder added. I’m not sure it needs the cocoa powder, but adjust to your own taste.

You’ll also need a whisk and a bain marie, which sounds like a complex piece of kitchen equipment, but it’s just a normal pot, with about 1-2cm of water in the bottom, and a glass or metal bowl sitting in it, above the water. You then put the water on a simmer (not boiling) which gently heats whatever is in the bowl. Pretty easy.



First, break the chocolate up into squares, so it melts quicker. Put it in the bowl over the water, and turn the heat on. If bubbles start forming in the water, you may have the heat up too high – remember, slow is the key for chocolate. The chocolate will slowly start to melt, so move it around a little with the whisk to help it along.


Once all the solid bits of chocolate are melted, add about 50ml of milk and whisk until it’s all mixed together. Keep adding the milk slowly, whisking each time, until you have added all the milk. After about 150ml, you can take it off the heat all together.

Put the resulting mix back into the (cleaned) milk bottle, and put in the fridge.


Drink once it’s chilled, and shake it well first, as the non-homogenised milk will seperate out into chocolate milk and chocolate cream. Not a bad thing. I suspect it’ll not last long.

Afternote: I just tried this with 100g of Whittaker’s 66% Dark, and I can’t tell the difference between that and the “real” thing. Takes all of 10 mins, and cooling time, to make. Makes a great Latte/Flat White too.

Nic Wise lives with his wife, one cat and a garden full of birds on a small island just off the coast of Auckland, New Zealand. He can usually be found writing apps for his iPhone, or taking photos on Instagram.

windfall apple cake

October 12, 2014

Windfall Apple Cake

Windfall Apple Cake-4

In my kitchen, weekends have always been a time for cake. I bake on other days too: for after school snacks, or mid-week puddings, but it is weekend baking that I love the most. A quiet, unhurried potter in the kitchen -with the radio on, and the sunlight softly falling onto the table- is a calming balm to soothe away the stresses of a busy week. Weekend afternoons were made for a hot cup of tea and a slice of still-warm cake.

Sometimes we take our tea in a flask, and our cake wrapped in tinfoil, to be eaten out in the woods, or atop a hill. Other times, we sit in the garden, mugs in hand, whilst the children play in the afternoon sunshine. More often than not, however, a cake is sliced straight from the cooling rack and eaten at the kitchen table, eager fingers dropping buttery crumbs.

A bowl of windfall apples is a permanent feature in the autumn. A kind friend with bountiful apple trees replenishes it whenever I see her, and in between times, I pick apples up from honesty-box shops or roadside baskets. I use them for breakfasts, or bake crumbles and cookies during the week, but when the weekend arrives, it’s time for a Windfall Apple Cake.

This cake, an adaptation of a Nigel Slater recipe, is a recurrent feature of my autumnal kitchen. At its absolute best eaten fresh from the oven, it will keep for several days in a tin, wrapped in foil. It works well as a pudding with a spoonful of Greek yoghurt.

Bake it, and taste the meditative pleasure of the weekend kitchen.

Windfall Apple Cake-3

Windfall Apple Cake-2


  • 130g butter, softened
  • 130g unrefined caster sugar
  • 2 apples (or 3 if very small)
  • the juice of half a lemon
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon (optional)
  • demerara sugar – 2 tbsp plus more for sprinkling
  • eggs – 2 large
  • 130g plain flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder


  1. Heat the oven to 180c/gas 4
  2. Line the base and sides of a 24cm square cake tin with greaseproof paper.
  3. Combine the butter and caster sugar, and cream together. If you have a freestanding mixer, you can leave them to mix whilst you get on with the apples.
  4. Core and finely chop the apples and toss with the lemon juice in a bowl. Stir in the demerara sugar and the cinnamon, if using (I love the cake both with and without it, depending on my mood.).
  5. Beat the eggs and whisk with a fork. Slowly add to the butter and sugar, beating as you go. Sift together the flour and baking powder (it may seem a hassle, but it really does make for a lighter cake). Fold them gently into the mixture.
  6. Spread the mixture evenly over the base of the cake tin, scatter the apple pieces on top and pour over any excess lemon juice.
  7. Bake for 30-40 minutes, until the apple pieces have browned, the edges of the cake have shrunk away from the sides of the tin, and a skewer comes out clean. Immediately scatter generously with demerara sugar and allow to cool in the tin for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
  8. Eat warm.
Laura Pashby lives in Gloucestershire UK with her husband, three small sons and a collection of vintage cameras. She is a writer, a blogger and an endless photo-taker.

blog: Circle of Pine Trees
instagram : @circleofpines
twitter: @circleofpines

taco fridays

August 24, 2014

I’m not sure when I first discovered Mexican food. Most likely during university in Auckland, where the only place to get it was The Mexican Cafe. Burritos, questadillas, enchiladas – they did most of the “fast” Tex-Mex staples, and had an excellent Tequila selection.

However, until recently, tacos where never really my thing. The only ones I knew of were the hard-shelled ones, which were messy and usually quite boring. They always looked too small – good for a starter, but not for a main. After spending more time in the US – California, really, but also Austin, TX – I learned to think of them as more than a snack. The Taco is the perfect flavour delivery vehicle.


A Taco is a very simple, but flexible, thing. Take a small corn tortilla, grill or steam it a little to make it more flexible and warm, add some topping, and eat. It can be anything from a bite size to a meal, and can contain anything which isn’t too liquid. Supreme flexibility.

So, after getting a tortilla press for my birthday, we started experimenting with various flavours and combinations. I usually start with the meat: prawn, fish, chicken, and sometimes steak or slow cooked brisket. Add in a sauce or something else gooey: flavoured mayonnaise, mashed avocado and top it off with some slaw, cabbage or other greens. La Boca Loca in Wellington have some of the best tacos I’ve tasted, and The Lucky Taco in Auckland regularly goes crazy with things like Ox tongue, tripe and even brains.

Yup. Zombie Tacos.

For us, tacos are usually an end of week thing – a Friday treat after a week at work, and the last Friday we spent at home was no exception. I think it came out as one of our best.

Japanese-inspired Tuna tacos


  • 6 small to medium sized tortilla
  • 200g tuna loin, around 1-2cm thick
  • Shot of tequila (shochu or sake could also work)
  • A not very hot (but flavourful) chilli
  • Japanese mayonnaise
  • 3 limes (2 for just the juice)
  • 100g Wakame seaweed salad

This made 6 tacos, which is enough for 2-3 people. This filling could easily be stretched to 8 tacos.

Slice the tuna loin into strips about 1cm thick. Put in a bowl with the tequila, some chilli and the juice of 2 limes. Leave to soak for 15 mins or so while you do the other things.

Mix a decent amount of Japanese mayonnaise with the zest of one lime, and the juice of half of the lime. Mix and leave to marinate.

Heat the corn tortilla in a dry frypan or grill plate. You want to make them warm, a bit floppy, and possibly (depending on taste) a little crispy. I usually do them one at a time, and put them in a tea towel to keep them warm and steam them a little. I prefer corn over wheat, too, but that’s just a personal taste.

Once they are cooked, cook the fish to taste – a little crispy on the outside, still rare on the inside. Distribute onto the tortilla, add the lime mayo on top, and finish with wakame. Eat right away.


Nic Wise lives with his wife, one cat and a garden full of birds on a small island just off the coast of Auckland, New Zealand. He can usually be found writing apps for his iPhone, or taking photos on Instagram.

on your way

July 13, 2014


if you slice one green zucchini into rounds, then further slice into quarters and
chop one green chili and
cut the kernels from two grilled ears of corn and
mince four or five cloves of garlic

you’re on your way

in a skillet, heat a tablespoon or two of olive oil and
toss in the garlic and green chili and then
the corn and
green zucchini and

you’re on your way

stir ingredients for one or two minutes and
smell that heavenly garlic
oh, the garlic

you’re on your way

sauté lightly
so that all is slightly crisp
be careful not to overcook and
season with coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

you’re on your way

an unassuming dish
to accompany what you like
be it vegan or of the meatier variety
delightful in taste and simplicity

yes, you’re on your way

to enjoying fresh weekend food which
surely can be enjoyed weekday but
for now it’s the weekend
so sink in

you’re on your way

michelle gd is a lover of life and a seeker of ways to capture the tiny moments of that life. she can be found at her blog and on instagram.

chocolate cake

November 24, 2012

— Chocolate Cake Recipe —

my mother invented a dessert for the inauguration of our new home. and she bought this cute silicone forms that don’t melt under high temperatures. now these are real chocolate cakes. the recipe is a culinary dark chocolate bar melted, grind hazelnuts and one egg. simple and tasty. turn on the oven before mixing the ingredients. bake around 15 minutes.

bon apetit ;)

Ana Eugénio is a 42 years old retired journalist, a blogger and a hobbyist photographer. She lives in Porto, Portugal with her family and a few cats.

facebook: ana.wonders
etsy: WonderDesign
flickr: earthwonders

Boiled eggs and soldiers. Redux

November 18, 2012

eggs with toast soldiers in ceramic egg cups

Carefully prepared, eggs with toast soldiers can remove the disappointment from your Sunday morning breakfast

During summer weekends, I’ve been beekeeping.
Each Sunday morning during winter I sit down to Match of the Day, with boiled eggs and toast soldiers to review the weekend’s Premier League football games.

Some people may think this post obsessive. I like to think of it as an exercise in continual improvement.

Boiling the eggs to ensure consistency

Bring a pot of water to the boil.
Once boiling, cut the heat altogether and leave the pot on the element.
Place the eggs in, pot lid on, and leave for 5 minutes.
The predictable drop in water temperature removes temperature as a possible variable when trying to reach the runny yolk nirvana. With a predictable temperature, and eggs arguably all being the same size, this allows the length of time to also become a constant.
Not only will the temperature drop be reliable, the water won’t be too hot and crack the egg. The lack of a rolling boil also removes the risk of a cracked egg against the pot bottom.
5 minutes, and you’ll have perfectly runny eggs, I can guarantee it.

Choose your toast wisely

toast cut into soldiers

Maximise your crust to soldier ratio

While the eggs are sitting in the hot water, make your toast.
I find Vogels the tastiest, and also strong enough to see you through the runniest, or toughest egg. Personally I am a Soya and Linseed fan, but all Vogels do the job well.

A thoughtful cut ensures an efficient crust to soldier ratio. An equal share of crust per soldier can be achieved, yielding 4 crusty sided soldiers per slice, rather than the usual 2 / slice.

Ensure you get some pointy edges soldiers to break into the yolk. You’ll lose the middle of the slice which this is too soft for scooping anyway, and you end up with twice the number of crusty soldiers.

Cups are more than they first appear

Choose a good egg cup, preferably with a hollow in between the inner and outer. The hollow area acts like a vacuum flask, ensuring the egg stays warm in the cup. The egg warms the inner, and the space in between. I haven’t yet gotten to warming the cups first, but they could easily be placed on the top of the espresso machine for pre-egg warmth.
I’m fond of Quail ceramics, particularly the Badger and Owl, but they’ve got some other awesome ones.
The warm egg will continue to cook in the cup, which will begin to harden the yolk. So once you’ve placed the 5 minute egg it the cup, remove the tops of all eggs quickly, to prevent further cooking – if the first one opened is still a little too wet you can leave the others capped for a short period to keep slowly cooking.

Never, ever underestimate the power of a good spoon

A good well rounded spoon will help scoop out the white in one smooth motion. Poorly shaped elliptical spoons can be fiddly, and wasteful of the precious white. Leave it to the Swede’s for efficiency, Ikea does a fine range of nicely rounded tea spoons.

I trust these weeks of stringent testing will see you too with consistent, reliable, and deeply satisfying runny eggs with soldiers.

Ashley Petherick is an expat kiwi living in the UK.

making bread

August 11, 2012

Jude’s Home made (and ground) Caraway and chia seed whole wheat raisin bread
I dried my wheat grains ready to grind into flour with my schnitzer pico grain mill (they need to have the pop sound when squashed with a knife to show they are dry enough to grind).
Prepared my yeast with 1 cup approx 100 deg water, 1 cup similar temperature milk, 2 tablespoons black strap molasses till it bubbled.
Then I added my freshly ground wheat flour, chia seeds, soaked raisins and a handful of caraway seeds to aid digestion.
Mixed it to a nice dough.
Raised it twice to double size (this can take up to an hour I’m told but i couldn’t wait that long!)
Then baked it at 160deg Celsius till it looked good.
Tested on my husband! He thinks it’s pretty good – I like it too.

I’ll make it with a different grain next time so I make sure my nutrition is always changing giving more chances of staying healthy from all those undiscovered vitamins and minerals God put in when he created them all.

Jude Woods lives on the Gold Coast of Australia with her husband, Warren.

summer iced tea

June 2, 2012

I never really drank iced tea until a friend from the US showed us how to make it properly. Forget the ultra-sweet nonsense you get in the corner store, real iced tea is closer to tea than a soft drink.


  • About 2.5L of water (boiling)
  • 3-5 green tea bags. We used Tea Pigs Mao Feng Green.
  • 5 ginger and lemon tea bags. We use Tea Pigs Ginger and Lemon.
  • Juice of one lemon
  • A splodge of Agave nectar, honey or even sugar.


  • Put the tea bags, lemon and sweetener into a large bowl (enough to hold the water)
  • Add the boiling water (in two lots of your jug isn’t big enough)
  • Leave it for 10-20 mins.
  • Remove the green tea bags and leave for another 15-20 mins (longer appears to be better)
  • Remove the ginger tea bags (they take ages to infuse)
  • Let it cool, and then bottle it and keep it in the fridge.

To serve:

Pour into your favourite glass and top up with sparkling water (eg soda stream!). We like it about half of each


  1. You can use green tea and black tea if you like it (I don’t). The trick is to brew it for enough time for it to be strong, but not bitter. The Americans have specific tea bags for making iced tea, if you can get it, try it – Luzianne
  2. Adjust the water based on the bottles you have to put it in. We use large snap-cap bottles. Soft drink bottles work well too.
  3. If you have a big enough pot you could make 5L at a time, you would just need to brew it for longer and maybe add more sweetener.
  4. Make it sweeter if you want, or don’t put any sweetener in… It’s all to taste, but I don’t think it should be super sweet. Play with the mix until its right for you.

Nic Wise lives in London, but his heart is on the west coast beaches of New Zealand. He can usually be found writing apps for his iPhone, or taking photos on Instagram.