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Easter break.

April 24, 2014

A valid excuse to eat chocolate till you feel sick, isn’t that what Easter is about? Some seem to think so. For us it is the most important time of the year, a time to reflect on the sacrifice Jesus made to save us. A time to spend with family and rejoice in the Risen Lord. A time for both reflection and joy. 

Don’t get me wrong an excuse to eat chocolate who doesn’t love that. 

It just so happened that this year Mr Butlers birthday was the day before Good Friday. In family tradition we had birthday persons choice for tea, well  very glad that is a once a year thing, he chose Kentucky Fried chicken. Very happy not to eat that again for another 12 months. First bite is nice but then the fat sets in and you feel a bit sickly.  But I did manage to bake a French Chocolate Sliver Cake for his birthday cake so that made up for all the KFC. It a deliciously rich dense cake with chocolate ganache smothered on top. Yummy. Fabulous for a special birthday.

I have been cooking loads of Mediterranean food and yummy curries, this one is a couscous and spicy lamb dish.

With homemade yogurt on top. Image

Isn’t it funny as you get older your tastes change and you appreciate so many more flavors, I think 20 years ago if I had tried to feed this to Mr Butler he may of thought me mad. Now he requests food like this all the time, no longer content to be just a meat and 3 veg man. I love the opportunity that gives me to experiment with all sorts of different cultures foods. For lunch today we had a home corned beef and pickles, sourdough and sauerkraut, topped of with some dutch mustard and you have a very happy hubby.


Lovely corned beef we did at home from local pasture feed meat. Just the right amount of fat in it to stay moist and tasty.


With so much to do lately I decided it was time to make a big batch of granola to have for a quick breakfast, what I didn’t count on was that the recipe I used would nearly fill my 5 litre jar. This lovely crunchy looking granola ended up being about 3 litres. I think that should keep me going for a while, even with the inevitable snacking that has been going on. It is quite irresistible just sitting atop the fridge there. The crunch of almonds, puffed quinoa  and oats all toasted with some of our very own honey who can blame me for the odd handful during the day.

I do hope your Easter time was enjoyable and full of chocolate.




Baking, acts of love.

April 3, 2014


The way I see it, baking is an act of love.  You may not actually eat what you bake for your family( I often don’t) but you bake for them
My family loves chocolate cake so I endeavour  to find and bake the best chocolate cake ever!  This one I`m told is quite good.
On occasion  I will bake a low sugar gluten free cake for me , but usually I bake for loved ones.
What are your emotions about baking? 

Harvest time.

March 24, 2014

To tie in with autumn harvest,  the Environment Centre where I volunteer holds a festival to celebrate.  Harvest time is both a busy and rewarding time in the garden and kitchen.  A time to reflect on the success or failure of crops and to have fun preserving things for yummy eating during the darker cold winter. 
I had a display of what you can do to provide for your self and family no matter what size your backyard. 


Finger licking good.

March 17, 2014

Roast chicken,  herb butter rub with kale stuffing.  Succulent and tasty. Thanks to “Not Quite Nigella”.
What do you think,  does it look yummy,  would you try a vegetable only stuffing in your roast chicken? 


What I learnt from this is that it is hard to rub butter all over a slippery chicken.  The butter didn’t want to stay on the legs,  note to self dry skin properly and baste during cooking to ensure even colouring of the skin. 


March 16, 2014

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Onward and upward.

March 15, 2014

Well so the saying goes “Onward and Upward”. To this end we have decided to move upward, that is North. From the very south we are moving 1.5 hours north. 

It came as a bit of a surprise, we had not expected for everything to happen so quickly or to find the right place.

Rick has quit his job and we will be moving during the end of June to a a different way of life. No more shift work and no more city life. We have taken a farm job and will be living 30 minutes out of a more country town in Southland. We can certainly see Gods hand in this as it all unfolded, which shouldn’t have come as a surprise but did. We had made the decision to look elsewhere for a job that didn’t have shift work and would be  better health and family life. But the path that lead down was unexpected, we will be working on a dairy farm, milking cows and doing general farm work.

Certainly no shift work , and outdoors( good for your health) and lots of time with family. Having to get up to cows at 5 in the morning is not everyone’s cup of tea but certainly will be ours. The goats and all the animals will come along and I’m sure if they knew the brand new homes that await they would be very excited too. Paddocks for goats and chickens and new digs for the rabbits well perhaps no digging but new homes and a run for them. The bees get to have a whole new banquet and the dog and cats all have new and exiting places to hide and run.

Our girls will have new things to do and learn, younger girl gets to go to a new school and older one will perhaps learn other farming things.

We still will live by our general homesteading principals, and definitely more so since there is no shop down the road. Lots to learn and appreciate about being in the country.



On the hunt.

February 24, 2014

The great thing about being a cat with human who have a big garden is the chance to go bug hunting. Percy the kitten thinks its great to hide and pounce on unsuspecting bugs in the garden.


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