Category: Helpful Hints

Matching Nuts With Cheeses

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Cheese-and-NutsNuts With Cheese 

The crunch of nuts is a tasty contrast to the creaminess of cheese. There are a few nuts that pair especially well with cheese. If using nuts on a cheese plate remember that nuts have a slight bitterness to them that is enhanced when served raw. The best way to use them is either when they’ve been toasted or candied/caramelized. Pecans, hazelnuts, walnuts, almonds or pine nuts are usually best for cheese plates. 

Serve them next to a cheese plate or sprinkle the nuts around a platter of cheese. Nuts are also the perfect garnish for salad recipes that include cheese. 

Not all cheeses are a good match with nuts. Detailed below are my suggested matches. 

Soft Ripened Cheeses – Brie and Camembert 

Match with WARM PISTACHIOS—Warming the nuts brings out the lushness of the cheese while the salt and crunch offer a delightful contrast. 

Recipe: Roasted pistachios, shelled and lightly salted 

Preheat oven to 100 C. (200 F). Spread pistachios on an un-greased cookie sheet.

Toast nuts for 10 to 15 min. Serve warm with cheese. 

Semi-Soft Cheeses 

Match with toasted walnuts or toasted almonds 

This match heightens the texture contrast with cheese while enhancing their complementary buttery flavor and aroma. By adding a sparkling sugar coating to the nuts, the pairing becomes more complex, engaging every sensor in the palate. 

To toast, place them in a single layer on a baking sheet and toast in a preheated 175 C. (350 F) oven until very lightly browned. Watch them closely. Depending on the variety, this should take from 3 to 10 minutes. Use them immediately or store them in a covered container in the refrigerator. 

Blue cheeses 

Caramelized walnuts or hazelnuts and toasted almonds. 

Cheddars 

Caramelized walnuts or hazelnuts and toasted almonds. I also like Roasted pistachios. 

Smoked cheeses 

Toasted hazelnuts, walnuts, pine nuts.

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Paring Nuts With Foods

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Nuts-PictureParing Nuts With Foods 

Rich in energy, protein, packed with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and the much talked about omega-3 fatty acids. Crunchy yet buttery, nuts are a delicious and healthy addition to our daily diet. 

  • Nuts are rich in energy and nutrients. Nuts are an excellent source of monounsaturated-fatty (MUF) acids which help to lower LDL or “bad cholesterol” and increase HDL or “good cholesterol.” Research studies suggest that Mediterranean diet that is rich in MUF to prevent coronary artery disease, strokes by favoring healthy blood lipid profile. 

One way I use nuts in my daily diet is to mix them with some dried fruits and have them as an afternoon snack. This helps off-set the 3pm blues (usually caused by a low blood sugar). 

Whether they’re whole, chopped, or ground, nuts add nutrition and flavor to meals and dishes and are also a great source of protein. 

Nut varieties include almond, brazil, cashew, chestnut, coconut, hazelnut, macadamia, peanut, pecan, pine, pistachio, and walnut. Most varieties can be bought whole, chopped, or ground; salted or unsalted; roasted or spiced. Generally, whole, unshelled nuts are the least expensive. 

Most unshelled nuts will keep at room temperature for up to six months, but shelled nuts should be stored in airtight containers in the refrigerator or freezer to keep them from becoming rancid. Throw out any that have mold. 

To remove thin skins, place the nuts on a baking sheet and bake them in a preheated 175 C. (350 F) oven until the skins begin to flake off. This will vary with the variety. Nuts can easily burn, so watch them closely. Remove them from the oven, wrap them in a heavy towel, and rub them against the towel to remove as much of the skins as possible. 

To grind nuts, use a nut grater or grinder and grind only a few nuts at a time to prevent them from becoming oily. 

To Toast Nuts 

Place them in a single layer on a baking sheet and toast in a preheated 175 C. (350 F) oven until very lightly browned. Watch them closely. Depending on the variety, this should take from 3 to 10 minutes. Use them immediately or store them in a covered container in the refrigerator. 

Nuts and Matches 

Macadamia 

Benefits They’re low in carbs but high in monounsaturated fats, which protect the heart.

Flavour match Plums, ginger, lemon, chocolate. 

Pistachio 

Benefits High in potassium, protein and iron.

Flavour match Trout, lamb, apricots, figs, citrus fruit, honey and mint. 

Brazilian 

Benefits One of the richest sources of selenium, which protects against prostate cancer. 
Flavour match Chocolate, bananas, dried fruit. 

Peanuts 

Benefits Full of mono-unsaturated fats, which reduce cholesterol and the risk of heart disease. 

Flavour match Chicken, pork, bananas, honey. 

Hazelnuts 

Benefits Rich in vitamin E, potassium and manganese. Lower in fat than many other nuts.

Flavour match Apples, mushrooms, raspberries. 

Chestnut 

Benefits Almost no fat, plenty of energy-boosting B vitamins and vitamin C. 

Flavour match Roast meat, red wine sauces. 

Walnuts 

Benefits Polyunsaturated fat, preventing high blood pressure and cholesterol. 

Flavour match Figs, Roquefort cheese, goats’ cheese, coffee. 

Almonds 

Benefits Most calcium of all nuts and more protein, gram for gram, than eggs. 

Flavour match Apples, pears, apricots, ice cream, trout. 

Pecan 

Benefits High in zinc and in cholesterol-lowering monounsaturated fats.

Flavour match Pears, maple syrup, apples, chocolate, figs, ginger. 

Pine Nuts 

Benefits Rich in protein and manganese, which helps break down fat.

Flavour match Spinach, Mediterranean veg, basil, feta cheese, lamb, pork.

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Making Nut Butters

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Nut_Butter-1000Nut Butters

As with peanut butter, other nut butters are also a rich source of high-quality protein and mono-unsaturated fat. I use the same method for making the following;

Almond butter, cashew butter, raw pecan butter, hazelnut butter and peanut butter.

Many kinds of nuts are also used to make nutritious butter. I buy raw nuts and toast them. Make sure you do not over toast them as this can make the butter taste slightly.

Making nut butter.

The first thing is to toast 2 cups of the selected nuts.

To toast, place them in a single layer on a baking sheet and toast in a preheated 175 C. (350 F) oven until very lightly browned. Watch them closely. Depending on the variety, this should take from 3 to 10 minutes. Once toasted, let them cool.

nuts-blender-1000Place them in a food processor and blend. If particles build up on the sides of the container, stop and scrape them down with a rubber spatula.

Continue processing until it begins to create a ball. You may have to break up the ball, but it is very important to be patient. Sometimes the ball will bang around a bit before it begins to break down and look creamy. This can take several minutes.

When it is balled up that I add a little olive oil. Add a teaspoon of oil and blend again. If the butter is creamy enough without it there is no need to add the oil.

Store in a sealed container in the fridge and use within 1 month.

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Salt Seasoning Chicken Breasts and Pan Fried Vegetables

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seasoning-the-chicken-breasChicken Breast 

As many of you will have found out chicken breast can end up dried out when its served. One of the most common reasons I have found relates to when you season the raw meat with salt. 

When I season chicken breast I only use pepper and herbs to start. The reason for this is that salt can remove moisture from the meat and when its cooked it can dry out quicker. I season with salt just before I cook it. 

Pan Fried Vegetables 

Time your salt seasoning when frying vegetables because if you add salt to vegetables before cooking, as soon as they hit the pan, the salt (sodium) will draw out and release moisture and they will steam and may not brown up very well. For deep, flavourful caramelization, add the salt seasoning at the end.

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Home Made Sun-dried Tomatoes in Olive Oil

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Dried_Roma_TomatoesIts easy to make your own sun-dried tomatoes at home with no special equipment. 

Sun-dried tomatoes in olive oil, seasoned will add a wonderful gourmet touch with great flavour to many dishes and salads and are a great saving as the prices at the supermarket or store can be very exorbitant!  The quality can be better than any you’ve bought as well. They make excellent gifts too. 

This method is so easy, anyone can do this!  It’s a great thing to do with your kids! 

Tomatoes  

Any quantity, ripe, but not over ripe are what to use firm. The yield varies considerably depending upon the moisture content of the tomatoes, which depends upon the type of tomato and the weather and how ripe they are.  

I like to use Roma (Italian) tomatoes and they have low levels of seed and have lower moisture when they are just ripe. 

Typically yield is 2 cups of dried tomatoes from 2 kg (4.4 lb) of tomatoes. 

Ingredients 

2 kg (4.4lb) Roma (Italian) tomatoes

1 tsp each of thyme, oregano, rosemary and basil mixed together

Coarse salt

3 cups red wine vinegar

Extra virgin olive oil, about 500-600 ml (2 1/2 cups)

Method 

Preheat your oven to 100 degrees Celsius (210 degrees F) 

Check all the tomatoes and remove any bruises with a sharp knife. 

Wash, pad dry, remove the stems and half the Roma tomatoes. Of course you can also use regular tomatoes, just slice them in quarters if they are large. *Scoop out most of the seeds and sprinkle with salt and leave them skin side up so that the excess liquid from the tomatoes can drain out. Let this sit for about 15-20 minutes. Drain off any moisture that has gathered in the tomato halves. This gets rid of the moisture and reduces the time in the oven. 

Cover a large baking tray (sheet) with olive oil and arrange tomatoes cut-side up. 

Sprinkle with coarse sea salt and if you like to, with dried herbs. I use  thyme, oregano, rosemary and basil to give them an Italian taste. 

Dry in the preheated oven for 4-6 hours. Times and temperature may vary based on your oven, the size of the tomatoes and of course how moist they are. Just try and find out what works best for you. Check tomatoes after a couple of hours to see how the progress is going. As you check after about 4 hours remove any that are dry as you don’t want to over dry. Even though they may all be about the same size some may dry faster than others. 

Note:  Its very important that once the tomatoes are placed in the oven that you do not touch them with your hands. Use clean thongs as required. This is a safety against the tomatoes getting contaminated. 

Once all the tomatoes have dried heat the red wine vinegar in a large pot to a boil  and blanch the dried tomatoes for 1 minute. Remove the tomatoes with a slotted spoon and drain well. The vinegar acts as a preservative and gives added flavour to the tomatoes. 

The vinegar bath made a lot of sense, since the Botulinum bacteria grow well in anaerobic, that is to say oxygen free, and low acid environment. Giving the dried tomato pieces a bath of boiling vinegar not only sterilizes the dried tomatoes to kill surface bacteria, but also raises the acidity level of sweet tomatoes to lessen the chance of Botulinum growing in the jar later. 

Layer the tomatoes into warm sterilized jars. Slowly pour warm olive oil into the jars, pressing down on the tomatoes slightly with a wooden spoon. Make sure that the tomatoes are completely submerged under the oil at all times, or they will be exposed to air and potential bacteria growth. When you are packing them in the jars make sure you do not touch them with your hands, use tongs or a spoon.

Cap the jars tightly and place them in a cool spot overnight. The next day, check the level of the oil and add more to the jars if the tomatoes are poking out of the oil. Check the jars two or three more times, adding more oil if necessary.

Recap the jars and store them in a cool place for 2 weeks before using. Refrigerate after opening and bring the tomatoes to room temperature before serving. 

Keep the tomatoes in the fridge and use within 4 weeks. I make batched as I am getting to the end of the previous batch. 

If you’d really like to do it the sun-dried way then you can leave it in the sun for up to two days, taking them in at night. 

* To seed a tomato, cut it in half lengthwise, push your thumb into the cavity and force the seeds of the tomato. This is best done over a compost pail or sink with a garbage disposal.

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Everyday Dried Herb Blends

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Seasonings and Herbs-5Growing and drying your own herbs guarantees that the herbs you use are always pungent and flavourful  Try a few of the combinations I’ve listed below, and I’m sure you’ll agree. And throw out all those old bottles in the spice cabinet soon! 

Italian Seasoning 

Use this blend to impart an Italian flavour to tomato meat sauces or with vegetables like eggplant.

2 teaspoons dried basil
2 teaspoons dried marjoram
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried sage 

Combine all ingredients and store in an airtight container.

Bouquet Garni

The idea behind the bouquet garni is to add flavor without little flecks of herbs in the dish. Usually, these are dried herbs or a combination of dried and fresh. They are made into little bundles tied with a string long enough to be tied to the handle of the pot for easy removal. You can use cheesecloth, muslin, or even a tea ball to hold the herbs.

For a muslin bag, cut a 100mm x 100mm (4″x 4″) piece. Place the herbs in the middle and tie up the corners. You can also tucked herbs between two pieces of celery stalk, tied them together, and dropped them into the soup or stew. It is nice to have these bundles all made up and stored in an air-tight jar, or to mix a favorite blend and bundle it when needed. The traditional herbs used in a bouquet garni are a tablespoon each of parsley and thyme and one crumbled bay leaf. I always try to use fresh Italian parsley because I find the dried has little flavor. Here are some other combinations that I like to have on hand:

Stew Bouquet Garni
for stews, soups, meats, and other robust dishes.

1 part rosemary 
1 part thyme 
1 part sage 
1 bay leaf, crumbled 
10 peppercorns

Savory Bouquet Garni

for light soups, stews, stocks, and vegetable dishes.

2 parts marjoram 
1 part savory 
1 part thyme 
1 bay leaf, crumbled 
a few peppercorns

Herb Shaker Blend

This combo can be ground fine and used in a salt shaker. It’s good rubbed on roasts and in hearty stews. Forget the salt.

2 parts rosemary 
2 parts summer savory 
1 part thyme 
1 part marjoram

Curry powder 

Curry leaves are leaves of the kari plant, used to flavour southern Indian cooking. You can find fresh leaves in an Indian speciality food store. Toast in a heated skillet over medium heat until a shade darker and fragrant, about 4 minutes:

6 tbsp whole coriander seeds 
4 tbsp whole cumin seeds 
3 tbsp chana dal or yellow split peas 
1 tbsp black peppercorns 
1 tbsp black mustard seeds 
5 dried red chili peppers 
10 fresh or dried curry leaves (optional)

Combine the toasted spices with 2 tbsp fenugreek seeds. Grind the mixture to a powder in batches in a spice mill or electric coffee grinder. Mix well with 3 tbsp turmeric. 

Herbes de Provence 

2 Tablespoons dried basil

1 Tablespoon dried marjoram

½ Tablespoon dried rosemary

1 Tablespoon dried summer savory

2 Tablespoon dried thyme

2 teaspoon lavender flowers

1 bay leaf 

Country Blend
Perfect for salads, soups, on steamed vegetables, and blended into butter for bread and biscuits. 

This blend makes a terrific substitute for table salt. Spoon onto hot baked potatoes (forget the butter and salt). 

5 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme or 5 teaspoons dried

4 tablespoons chopped fresh basil or 4 teaspoons dried

4 tablespoons chopped fresh chervil or 4 teaspoons dried

4 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon or 4 teaspoons dried 

Combine the herbs and store in an airtight container at room temperature. 

Fish and Seafood Herbs

Sprinkle onto fish or seafood before baking or grilling.

Add the blend to fish soup and sauce; use for making fish stock for poaching fish and shellfish. 

5 teaspoons dried basil

5 teaspoons crushed fennel seed

4 teaspoons dried parsley

1 teaspoon dried lemon peel 

Combine all herbs and store in a tightly closed glass jar at room temperature. 

Cajun Blend

Excellent with fish or poultry. Sprinkle it into a baked sweet potato or over steamed vegetables. 

2 tablespoons paprika

1 1/2 tablespoons garlic powder

1 tablespoon onion powder

1/2 tablespoon black pepper

2 teaspoons cayenne pepper

2 teaspoons dried oregano

2 teaspoons dried thyme 

Combine the herbs and spices. Store in an airtight container at room temperature. 

Fines Herbs

Season fish or poultry before cooking. Use in omelets and scrambled eggs.

Sprinkle over hot vegetables. 

3 tablespoons dried parsley

2 teaspoons dried chervil

2 teaspoons dried chives

1 1/2 teaspoons dried tarragon 

Combine the herbs. Store in a tightly covered jar at room temperature. 

Barbecue Blend

Excellent for beef, lamb, or pork. 

Sprinkle over eggplant or zucchini before grilling. 

3 tablespoons dried basil

3 tablespoons dried oregano

2 bay leaves, finely crumbled

2 tablespoons dried rosemary

1 tablespoon dried savory 

Combine the herbs. Stir in a tightly covered container at room temperature.

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Soy Sauce Substitute

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Soy sauce contains wheat and I also react to soy as well so when it is called for in a recipe this is what I use. It only takes a few minutes to prepare.

Makes 1-1⁄3 cups

240 ml molasses

90 ml balsamic vinegar

1 tbsp fine, raw sugar (adjust to taste)

Place all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix until well blended. Store in the fridge in a sealed glass jar or container.

Recipe from The New Zealand Gluten-Free Cookbook Jimmy Boswell 1012 Published by Penguin New Zealand http://www.jimmyboswell.com  

Photography by Sean Shadbolt http://www.foodphotography.co.nz

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Clarified butter or Ghee

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I often use Clarified butter or Ghee when I am cooking as it imparts a rich flavour into a dish. A good quality Clarified butter can add to the aroma, flavour and taste to the food. However, the texture, colour and taste of ghee depends on the source of the milk from which the butter was made and the extent of boiling during the making of it.

More specifically, by melting butter, a cook can see that it separates into clear golden liquid and a thick liquid which settles to the bottom. The thick liquid is composed of milk solids, a protein rich solution that burns easily over high heat. So, once the milk solids are separated and removed, the remaining butter can be cooked on a very high heat without burning.

Smoking Point

Butter has a smoking point of between 121–149°C while Clarified butter or Ghee has a smoke point of 252°C. As you can see there is quite a bit of difference between the two. (Sourcehttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smoke_point) A chart that details various smoking points is available at this link.

You will see when you compare the different smoking points of various oils  Clarified butter is up there with Rice Bran Oil.

Making Clarifying Butter

Clarifying butter is very easy to make. Slice a 500g (1 lb) block of butter into small pieces. Heat the butter slices in a heavy saucepan over low heat until it crackles and bubbles. Remove the pan from the heat and use a spoon to carefully skim off the fat foam that has risen to the top. Pour or spoon the clear liquid into a container, leaving the thicker milky stuff at the bottom. Discard the white residue. Tightly cover the liquid and refrigerate or freeze. It can be easily be stored either way for months.

Clarified butter also tastes much richer than regular butter; you’ll notice that dishes made with ghee are often more flavorful and less greasy than those made with traditional vegetable oil or even butter. Chefs often used clarified butter instead of regular oil or butter because it does not burn during frying, and also intensifies the flavour of the dish.

Clarified may be a much healthier choice for those who don’t want to eliminate fat from their diet entirely.

Some benefits

Clarified butter is commonly preferred over processed margarine and butter because of its many health benefits.  Some of the key benefits of Clarified butter include:

Good for people who are lactose intolerant.

Can help relieve ulcers

Can improve conditions of constipation

Helps promote healthy eyes and skin

Can be used as a topical treatment for blisters, burns and cuts

Reduces inflammation, internally and externally

Helps improve the texture of the hair

May help to inhibit cancerous tumors because of its anti-viral properties

Ultimately, Clarified butter is a highly concentrated form of fat that contains many important fatty acid chains.  These have several benefits for healing and tissue repair, and these fatty acids may also help with the absorption of other vitamins and minerals found in everyday foods.

It’s important to remember that clarified butter still contains a significant amount of saturated fat.  Moderation is essential when consuming Clarified butter and other types of fats, especially if your family has a history of heart disease.

 

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Everyday Gluten Free Products in New Zealand

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When the MFD, (manufacturers food database) went off line in June this year I started to work on a list from it that are everyday foods or things what we can use all the time. This is stage one.

I will be doing more work on soon so there is a better structure to it in product sections and make it into a pdf download.

This list is a great starter and if you are new to Gluten free, copy this and print it to help with your shopping.

Check the labels if you have issues with other ingredients. This list is only focused at Gluten free.

Coeliac New Zealand have great information about eating Gluten free in New Zealand at this link.

http://www.coeliac.org.nz/eating_gluten_free

This list in is no specific order at present.

Edmonds

Custard Powder
Fielders Cornflour (Gluten Free)

Tatua

Creme Fraiche
Sour Cream
Marscapone

Heinz Wattie’s Nz Ltd

Tomato Ketchup
Seriously Good Aioli
Seriously Good Mayonnaise Lite (Squeezy)

Heinz Pasta Sauce

Seriously Good Alfredo
Seriously Good Carbonara
Seriously Good Classic Tomato
Seriously Good Creamy Mushroom

Wattie’s

Bbq Sauce – (Squeezable)
Homestyle Tomato Sauce
Homestyle Tomato Sauce – (Squeezable)
Lamican Sweet Chilli Sauce
Lite Tomato Sauce – (Canned)
Lite Tomato Sauce – (Squeezable)
Pizza Sauce
Steak Sauce – (Squeezable)
Sweet & Sour Sauce
Thick & Rich Tomato Ketchup – (Squeezable)
Tomato Sauce

Wattie’s Bit On The Side

Absolutely Apple Sauce
Cracker Cranberry Sauce
Spicy Apricot Sauce
Sweet Chilli Sauce

Wattie’s Curry Sauces

Creamy Butter Chicken Curry Sauce
Korma
Rich Tomato Butter Chicken Curry Sauce

Wattie’s Pasta Sauces (Canned)

Chunky Arrabiata
Chunky Summer Vegetable
Chunky Tomato & Basil
Chunky Tomato & Roasted Garlic
Tomato & Herb
Tomato & Red Capsicum

Wattie’s Simmer Sauces “Just Add”

Butter Chicken
Curry Mince

Wattie’s Tomato Paste/Puree

‘Italian Seasoned’ Tomato Puree
Pizza Sauce (Twin Pack)
Tomato Paste
Tomato Puree
Tomato Paste (Twin Pack)

Wattie’s Wok Creations

Sweet Chilli & Lime

The Collective Dairy

Kalamata Olive Haloumi
Lemon & Chilli Haloumi
Traditional Haloumi

Country Goodness

Cream Cheese Spreadable
Country Goodness Original Cottage Cheese
Cream Cheese
Cottage Cheese Chives
Sour Cream & Chives Dip
Sour Cream Dips – Classic Kiwi Onion
Sour Cream Dips – Green Onion Flavoured
Sour Cream Dips – Seafood Flavoured
Sour Cream Dips – Sweet Chilli

Elocin

Pizza & Pasta Sauce – Tomato

Maggi Gluten Free Range

Gluten Free Cheese Sauce
Gluten Free Chicken Gravy
Gluten Free Tasty Cheese Sauce

Unilever

Bertolli Five Brothers Pasta Sauce
Bolognese 500g

Five Cheese 500g
Grilled Summer Vegetable 500g, 737g
Oven Roasted Garlic & Onion 500g, 737g
Oven Roasted Garlic With Wine 500g
Portobello Mushroom & Garlic 500g
Summer Tomato Basil 500g, 737g

Bertolli Pasta Sauce

Arrabbiata 400g
Basilico 400g
Parmigiana 400g
Sicilliana 400g

Continental Chicken Tonight Simmer Sauces

Apricot Chicken 500g
Creamy Chicken With Mushrooms 475g
Creamy Lemon Chicken 480g
Golden Honey Mustard 485g
Lite Creamy Chicken With Mushroom 480g
Lite Golden Honey Mustard 490g
Sweet & Sour 520g

Woolworths Select

Fish Sauce 250ml
Hard Tops Choc Honeycomb 220g
Hard Tops Choc Mint 220g
Hard Tops Chocolate 220g
Sauce Bbq 500ml
Topping Chocolate Flavoured 500ml
Topping Strawberry 500ml

Craig’s

Cannellinni Beans
Chickpeas
Chilli Beans
Four Bean Mix
Large Red Kidney Beans
Lentils
Mexican Beans
Red Kidney Beans
Salsa Chilli Beans & Corn

Heinz

English Recipe Baked Beans

Oak Canned Vegetables

Asparagus Spears
Baked Beans
Baked Beans In Ham Sauce
Beetroot Sliced
Chopped Tomatoes
Cream Style Corn
Peas Minted
Whole Peeled Tomatoes

Wattie’s Canned Beans

Baked Beans – Lite
Bean There – Mexican Baked Beans
Chilli Beans – Hot
Salsa Chilli Beans Medium

Wattie’s Canned Tomatoes

Chopped Tomatoes In Puree
Indian Style Tomatoes
Italian Style Tomatoes
Moroccan Style Tomatoes
Pesto Style Tomatoes
Savoury Tomatoes – Celery, Onions, Peppers
Tomato Crushed And Sieved
Tomatoes – Basil
Tomatoes – Chopped In Juice
Tomatoes – Roast Garlic & Onion
Tomatoes Mexican Style
Whole Peeled Tomatoes – No Added Salt
Whole Peeled Tomatoes In Juice

Wattie’s Canned Vegetables

Asparagus Spears
Baby Beetroot
Baby Corn
Beetroot
Beetroot Slices With No Added Salt
Chunky Beetroot
Corn Kernels
Corn Kernels No Added Sugar And Salt
Cream Style Corn
Cream Style Corn – No Added Sugar
Minted Peas
Mushrooms In Butter Sauce
Organic Whole Kernel Corn
Sliced Green Beans

Wattie’s Frozen Potato Products

Chunky Cut Chips
Crispy Crinkle Chips
Crispy Skins
Homestyle Mashed Potato
Homestyle Mashed Potato With Roasted Garlic
Jacket Wedges
Shoestring Fries
Steam N Mash Potatoes
Super Oven Fries

Wattie’s Frozen Vegetables

Baby Beans And Baby Carrots
Baby Carrots
Baby Peas
Baby Peas And Supersweet Corn
Broad Beans
Broccoli & Cauliflower
Butter Beans
Cajun Style Vegetables
Chinese Mix
Choice Cut Beans
Chuckwagon Corn
Chunky Mix
Free Flow Spinach
Full Of Beans
Garden Peas
High Fibre Mix
International Mix
Minted Baby Peas
Minted Garden Peas
Mixed Vegetables
Peas And Corn
Rainbow Mix
Romano Mix
Sliced Green Beans
Steamfresh Baby Carrots, Broccoli, Cauliflower
Steamfresh Broccoli, Carrots & Sugar Snap Peas
Steamfresh Carrots, Broccoli, Cauliflower
Steamfresh Carrots, Corn & Sugar Snap Peas
Steamfresh Corn, Broccoli, Baby Peas, Baby Carrots
Steamfresh Corn, Carrots & Broccoli
Steamfresh Sensations With Garden Herbs
Stir Fry Mix
Super Greens
Super Mix
Supersweet Corn
Supersweet Corn Cobs
Sweet & Sour Stir Fry Mix
Vitality Mix
Whole Baby Green Beans

Wattie’s Stir Fry (Frozen)

Wok Creations Chinese Style
Wok Creations Hong Kong Mix
Wok Creations Malaysian
Wok Creations Vietnamese
Wattie’s Bit On The Side

Onion Marmalade
Totally Tomato Relish

Annies

100% Natural Fruit Leather – Veggie
Freedom Foods Group Ltd

Gluten Free Chickpea Chips
Potato Chips

The Good Taste Company

Basil & Roast Garlic Chunky Dip
Basil Pesto Aioli Dip
Chilli, Lime & Yoghurt Dip
Creamy Blue Cheese Creamy Dip
Cucumber, Mint, Yoghurt Dip
Feta, Basil & Spinach Chunky Dip
Garlic & Onion Kiwi Dip
Garlic Lovers Aioli Dip
Horopito Pepper Aioli Dip
Roasted Onion & Garlic Dip
Spinach & Ricotta Creamy Dip
Tomato, Capsicum & Chilli Dip

Tastes Divine

Green Onion Dip
Sweet Chilli Dip
Bbq Glaze
Hansells

Baking Powder 150g
Baking Soda 185g, 400g
Blue Colour 50ml
Citric Acid 100g
Flavoured Essence Brandy 50ml
Flavoured Essence Lemon 50ml
Flavoured Essence Rum 50ml
Flavoured Essence Vanilla 50ml, 125ml
Green Colour 50ml
Jam Setting Mix 70g
Natural Essence Banana 50ml
Natural Essence Caramel 50ml
Natural Essence Vanilla 50ml, 125ml
Natural Orange Essence 50ml
Natural Strawberry Essence 50ml
Orangatangi 225g
Pinkalicious 225g
Red Colour 50ml
Vanilla Extract – With Seeds 50ml
Yellow Colour 50ml

Craig’s

Apricot Jam
Apricot Spread
Bitter Marmalade
Black Doris Plum Jam
Blackberry Jam
Blackcurrant Jam
Blueberry Jam
Boysenberry Jam
Breakfast Marmalade
Chunky English Style Marmalade
Ginger Marmalade
Raspberry Jam
Red Plum Jam
Strawberry Jam
Strawberry Spread
Sweet Tangelo Orange Marmalade
Three Berry Jam

Woolworths Select

Apricot Jam 500g
Blackberry Jam 500g
English Breakfast Marmalade 500g
Plum Jam 500g
Raspberry Jam 500g
Strawberry Jam 500g

Whittakers

33% cocoa mik madagascar
50% cocoa dark block 250g
50% cocoa dark chunks bar 50g
62% dark almond block 250g
62% dark caramel block 250g
62% dark chocolate block 250g
72% cocoa ghana peppermint
72% dark chocolate block 250g
72% dark chocolate chunks 50g
72% dark chocolate squares – 16 pack triangular
72% dark ghana chocolate sante bars 25g
almond gold bar 45g
almond gold block 250g
almond gold mini slab
bittersweet dark sante 25g
cashew block 250g
coconut bar 50g
coconut block 250g
coconut mini slab
creamy milk block 250g
creamy milk chunks bar 50g
creamy milk mini slab
creamy milk sante 25g
dark chocolate squares (individual packs)
dark orange block
fruit & nut block 250g
fruit & nut chunks 50g
hazelnut bar 40g
hazelnut block 250g
macadamia block 250g
milk caramel block 250g
milk chocolate squares (individual packs)
peanut block 250g
peanut mini slab
peanut slab 50g
raisin & peanut slab 50g
rum & raisin block 250g
super dark peanut slab 75g
super peanut slab
white chocolate block 250g
white chocolate macadamia block 250g
white chocolate sante 25g

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Storing Herbs

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mixing herbsAt a cooking demo I was doing the other day at Palm Beach Plaza, Papamoa I was asked about storing of herbs. Here are a few tips for getting the best out of the herbs you grow this year.

Mixing and Storing Herbs and Spices

Dried herbs are stronger in flavour than fresh leaf herbs. To convert dry to fresh measurements, use approximately 3 tablespoons fresh to each tablespoon dry. In most cases use 1/3 to ¼ the amount of dried herbs as is called for fresh. In general ¼ teaspoon of spice is enough for 4 servings.

Mixing Herbs – when seasoning with herbs and spices try to complement your dish by not overwhelming the flavour of the food. Cooking spices for too long may result in overly strong flavours.

For long-cooking dishes, such as soups and stews add herbs and spices an hour or less before serving. For best results try crushing the herbs before adding to your dish. For shorter cooking-dishes try adding dry spices earlier in cooking. Fresh spices and herbs should be added towards the end of cooking.

Unless the recipe specifically calls for it, don’t use more than three herbs and spices in any one dish. The exception to this rule is East Indian cooking, which often calls for 10 or more different spices in one curry dish.

Try replacing herbs and spices called for in recipes with something different – such as Marjoram instead of Oregano, Savory instead of Thyme, Cilantro instead of Parsley, Anise seed instead of Fennel. Mixing herbs and spices will provide you with greater creativity in food preparation by allowing you to create a variety of exciting and uniquely seasoned dishes. You may just create a recipe that will be one of a kind, beloved by everyone.
Drying Herbs – try drying herbs on racks, slats or upside down by their stems. For best drying, place your herbs in a well ventilated, dry, cool environment. Ensure that you have plenty of air space and turn every few days. Another alternative to drying is using the microwave by laying the herbs out on absorbent paper and cooking on low for 3 minutes. A dehydrator is also another excellent option.

Harvesting Herbs – the best time to pick the leaves or flower buds is when they start to unfurl. Try to harvest your herbs early in the day and before noon at the latest, as the herbs are most potent then. Seeds must be collected when they turn brown and brittle. Never pick herbs in wet or humid conditions.

Storing Herbs – store spices in a cool, dark, dry place. Heat, humidity, and excessive light will result in the dry herbs and spices losing their flavour more quickly. A good way to store herbs and spices is in small, airtight glass containers. If stored properly, dried herbs and ground spices will retain their flavour for a year. Whole spices may last for 3 to 5 years. To keep larger quantities of herbs and spices fresh, store them in tightly sealed containers in the freezer.

Do not store dry herbs and spices near any humid source, such as sinks, dishwashers, kettles, coffee makers, on counter tops, stoves or microwaves. Avoid storing dry herbs and spices inside the refrigerator due to the high humid environment. 

Avoid storing near heat sources such as stoves, top of microwaves and refrigerators. For best results grind whole spices in a grinder or mortar & pestle. If you want to enhance the whole spice flavour, try roasting the whole spice in a dry skillet over a medium heat, being careful not to burn them.
 

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