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Saturday, March 15, 2014

tip of the week - make your food shine!

Glucose Wash

Make up a wash comprising one teaspoon liquid glucose (corn syrup) with one tablespoon water. Mix well over a low heat for a minute until combined. Take a pasty brush and 'paint' the piece of meat, fish or chicken you are about to sear -  the painted side (presentation side) goes down first - cook to desired doneness and turn over - paint second side and sear again until cooked to your liking. The perfect shine every time!

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Spicy Prunes

These spicy prunes don't photograph very well but believe me they are delicious. This recipe was given to me by Judy Newell who owns Rangimarie Beachstay on the east coast of NZ's north island.  If you don't want to go to the trouble of making spice vinegar any strong vinegar will do instead.


450g pitted prunes
1 cup spiced vinegar
1 cup soft brown sugar
1 cup water
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon


Place all the ingredients in a small pan and bring to the boil. Simmer for ten minutes. Cool and bottle.

Spiced Vinegar:


2 teaspoons allspice
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
2 bay leaves
1 blade of mace
1 teaspoon cloves
1 stick cinnamon
6 peppercorns
1 small thumb ginger, chopped
1 litre vinegar (malt)


Tie the spices in a muslin bag, place in a covered pan with the vinegar and heat slowly to boiling point. Leave to stand for two hours then remove the muslin bag and discard it except the cinnamon stick. Pour the spiced vinegar and place the cinnamon stick into a suitable bottle for storage. This vinegar keeps indefinitely.