NZ Kitchen Garden

Home grown goodness for the kitchen and pantry


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Raw food truffles

If you are looking for a little nibble that will get you through that 3pm craving time, these little almost-raw food truffles may be just the ticket. I was inspired by these little raw food treats called Foosballs, which I found at Hardy’s health store in Kerikeri. Here’s my take on it, using what I had in the pantry. Continue reading


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Fruit smoothies ready to go

I love a good smoothie, whether it be fruit or vege based. The upside to smoothies is that they’re easy to make, can be packed full of goodness and are easy to consume whether you are relaxing or on the go. A downside is that it can be tricky to have the right ingredients on hand at the time when you want them – especially if the ingredients are out of season. Continue reading


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Crunchy chicken salad that packs a health punch

Last night’s dinner was inspired by a dish call Metuvlun Saland from a local restaurant called Cafe Jerusalem. A cabbage-centered dish (stay with me), which is uber-tasty, filling and delivers a powerful punch when it comes to the health department. Continue reading


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Two ways with Spinach, Silver Beet and Kale

An abundance of leafy greens in my garden has prompted an hour of preserving in my kitchen. Now is a good time to bring in the last of my autumn spinach, silver beet and kale to make way for the next crop, which is branching out in all directions already. Continue reading


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Greek salad and lamb burgers

My go-to cuisine when I feel like detoxing or loading up on fresh vege is Mediterranean. Last night it was Greek style salad with lamb burgers – yum! Quick and easy to rustle up with most of the making in the preparation – or chopping, to be more precise. Continue reading


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Risotto Bianco with spinach and peas

The harvesting is ramping up around here, with spinach and peas for dinner last night. The inspiration for these gorgeous greens was Jamie Oliver’s Risotto Bianco; a basic risotto recipe, which is yummy on its own or great as a base for other flavours.

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There’s been a … harvest!

It’s time for a confession: I would rather look on lovingly at my well-stocked, heaving vegetable garden and never harvest anything. There, I’ve said it. Yes, it is a curse and this line of thinking may possibly contravene some unwritten law for vege gardeners. However, the only thing that eventually motivates me to harvest is the thought of losing my fleshy beauties to time, where they can be taken out by some stealthy suspect like rot or going to seed.

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Putting the verve into vege gardening

The new books page on my site has a good list of the books and magazines that motivate me to work in my vege garden day-after-day, keep on top of the issues that can occur and then – of course – provide inspiration on how to enjoy the benefits of my labour. Continue reading


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Thai-inspired chicken soup

Well, I looked at my garden this morning and thought, “what exotic lunch could I make with you?” The answer that I came up with as Thai-inspired soup.

Thai-Inspired Chicken Soup

From the garden:  Lemon grass, capsicum, chili, spinach, spring onion, young celery, chives and coriander. Other ingredients:  cooked chicken, noodles, white onion, water, mystery-Asian stock cube, palm sugar, shrimp paste, fish sauce and mushrooms.

The time (all 5 minutes of it) was in the chopping of the vege and bringing the pot to boil. If you are like me and a bit unsure of how to prepare fresh lemon grass, watch this great vid. Continue reading


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Mushrooms with chilli, herbs and butter beans

It must be perfect weather for growing toad stills here at the moment. There are quite a number growing quite well around the base of our oak trees and in the shelter of the flaxes. Continue reading


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Green Smoothie Base

I have my hairdresser to thank for this addictive and fibrous smoothie. Making it is simple, drinking it is enjoyable and the end result is a filling, good-feeling act of kindness to yourself. It must be, surely, since it is jam-packed with goodies like iron, niacin, folic acid, vitamins a, c, e, k and a few b vitamins – and several handy minerals.

Use it as a base recipe and experiment with complementary flavours, and other fruits and vegetables that will give you a boost in one mineral or vitamin department or another. Continue reading


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Mean, green Brussels Sprouts

I have been planning my next garden (aka the mega garden) and have been undecided about the tight little mini cabbage-type greens called brussels sprouts. If selected, they will not be planted until January or harvested until May, but I like to know what’s coming. If it is not brussels sprouts, then I need to pick something else and lock it in so that my plan is nice and tidy! Continue reading