Home' Greymouth Star : April 1st 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
Wednesday, April 1, 2015 - 7
aster for me is a long weekend of
good food, fun, friends and family.
For many people it follows Lent,
a time of fasting. So no wonder
Easter Sunday is a day of feasting
— e verything from chocolate eggs
and rabbits, to party food, roasted
meats, decadent cakes and desserts.
Easter is the biggest holiday of the year in Greece.
Roast lamb or kid — depending on the region — is
the traditional Easter meat either cooked on a spit, or
simply roasted or grilled. A roast leg of lamb is also
popular with the French, many Italians enjoy boiled
or braised lamb and the English, a roasted lamb
shoulder or leg ser ved with new potatoes and mint
sauce. Americans however, choose to roast a ham
rather than a lamb for Easter.
The New Zealand lamb ‘glammies’ are in full swing
and there could be a winner near you. O ver 150 farm
entries were narrowed down to 20 in the search for
the nation’s most tender and tasty lamb. A double
reason to celebrate lamb at Easter.
The eating of eggs was once prohibited during
Lent and their welcome return provided a reason to
celebrate. Originally people gave gifts of eggs car ved
from wood or precious stones.
Intricately, hand-painted hens eggs followed in later
years then eggs made from marzipan. It was not until
the 1800s that the first chocolate eggs were made in
Today there is an enormous assortment of chocolate
eggs of all sizes that can be the focus of garden
treasure hunts. And if there are by chance any
leftovers, melt the eggs (the marshmallow centred
ones are best) and pour over poached pears, or chop
them and add to your favourite sweet muffin recipe.
My Greek Easter Cake
This moist cake is topped with thick Greek-style
yoghurt with honey in place of the customary cream
1 large orange
125g butter, softened
1⁄2 cup caster sugar
3⁄4 cup ground almonds
1 cup gluten-free flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 eggs, lightly beaten
150ml runny honey
1⁄2 cinnamon quill
3 tablespoons each: orange juice, lemon juice
250g thick Greek yoghurt with honey (I used
pulp 1 passionfruit
Preheat the oven to 200degC. Line the base and
sides of a 20cm cake pan with baking paper.
Halve the orange and remove any pips. Place in
a food processor or blender — skin, pith and flesh.
Whiz until the mixture is smooth.
Place all the other cake ingredients in a bowl. Mix
well. Add the orange puree and mix well. Spoon
evenly into the prepared pan.
Bake for 8 minutes at 200degC. Reduce the
temperature to 180degC and continue cooking for
20 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the centre
comes out clean.
Meanwhile, combine the honey and cinnamon
quill in a small saucepan. Heat and stir until well
combined. Simmer for 2 minutes. Stir in the citrus
Turn the cooked cake out onto a wire rack. Place on
a plate to catch the drips. Using a thin skewer, make
some holes over the cake. Slowly spoon the syrup
on top allowing it to soak into the cake. Place on a
ser ving dish. Cover and chill.
Just before ser ving, spread the Greek yoghurt with
honey over the cake. Drizzle with the passionfruit
pulp. Ser ves about 8.
Harissa, capsicum and
Harissa is a fiery North African red paste made
from pounded chillies, garlic, coriander, cumin and
caraway seeds. Ready-made pastes are available from
delis and selected supermarkets.
150g feta cheese, crumbled
1⁄2 to 1 cup sour cream
1 small red capsicum, seeded and diced
1-2 tablespoons harissa
Combine the feta and enough sour cream to make a
thick dip. Stir in the capsicum in a bowl. Dot with the
harissa and garnish with the mint. Ser ve as a spread
for crackers or crusty bread. Serves 8.
Braised lamb with herbs
Melt-in-the-mouth tender. Slice or pull the
lamb apart and ser ve on a platter for diners to help
1.5kg boned lamb shoulder
10 large sprigs thyme
4 sprigs rosemary
12 fresh sage leaves, finely chopped
1 tablespoon dried oregano
flaky sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon runny honey
2 tablespoons olive oil
1⁄2 cup white wine
Preheat the oven to 180degC. Lightly oil a casserole
just large enough to hold the lamb. I used a cast iron
With the tip of a sharp knife, score the fat in a criss-
Remove the leaves from the thyme and rosemary
and finely chop. Combine with the sage, oregano,
salt and pepper. There should be about a 1⁄4 cup of the
chopped herbs and seasonings. Press three-quarters
into the scored lamb, pressing it in well.
Sprinkle the remaining herb mixture on the base of
Place the lamb in the casserole then drizzle it with
the lemon juice, honey and olive oil.
Add the wine to the casserole, cover and cook
for two and a half hours, until very tender. Check
occasionally to ensure there is enough liquid.
Remove from the oven and rest for 5 minutes. Ser ve
the lamb drizzled with the pan juices. Ser ves 6-8.
Light and delicious and easy enough for the kids to
make. I used white Robin Eggs that are sold together
with food safe markers to DYO decorations.
125g self-raising flour
25g cocoa, softened
150g butter, softened
150g caster sugar
2 large eggs
1⁄4 cup milk
75g chocolate, chopped
75g butter, softened
150g icing sugar, softened
12 mini Easter eggs
Preheat the oven to 190degC. Line a 12-hole patty
pan with cupcake liners.
Sift the flour and cocoa into a mixing bowl. Add the
remaining ingredients. Beat well, until smooth. Place
heaped dessertspoons of the mixture in the cupcake
Bake for about 15 minutes, until risen and cooked.
Insert a thin skewer in the centre — it should come
To make the topping, place the chocolate in a
microwave bowl. Microwave on high in 30 second
bursts, until melted. Beat the butter and sugar, until
smooth. Beat in the melted chocolate. Spread over the
cup cakes. Top with mini Easter eggs. Makes 12.
eer before spirits, you have
never been sicker. Spirits
before beer, you are in the
This one might have
some reasoning behind it because
when you start drinking spirits you will
feel the effect quickly and you will slow
your rate down and when you change
to beer you are likely to maintain the
same slow pace. Start with beer and
you will drink faster and then when
you switch to spirits you will keep up
the rate and wipe yourself out.
Gin makes me cry, cider makes me
These are the result of your taste
memory, which is a very powerful
psychological force. The smell and taste
remind you of an emotional or physical
crisis and you get a brief recall.
Mixing drinks makes you drunk
quicker. Rubbish. The amount
of alcohol you drink causes your
intoxication. Coffee sobers you up.
Nonsense. You just become a wide
Martinis should be stirred not
shaken. This is true, if you are a purist.
Stirred gently, in fact, so as not to
‘ bruise’ the gin. But those who study
these things have found that shaking
de-activates the hydrogen peroxide and
increases the air in the drink, giving
more mouthful and more taste.
The oldest story is from Pliny the
Elder AD 23 who said, In Vino Veritas
— In wine there is truth — meaning
that it is harder to lie when you have
been drinking. Do you agree or is it the
opposite for you?
Salty Dog — An old classic. Mix
a tbsp salt and tips sugar in a saucer,
rub the rim of a highball glass with a
wedge of lime and dip in the salt-sugar
mix, fill glass with ice then 60ml vodka
or gin and top with grapefruit juice.
You cannot believe the wine labels
in Europe, with Spain increasing its
production of budget wine so much
that France is importing the equivalent
of 1000 million bottles last year and
bottling it as French because it much
cheaper than growing their own. I
bought a bottle of cheap Kiwi Merlot
the other day and the label said
‘Product of New Zealand and France’.
It was probably Spanish, it still tasted
“Alcohol is one of the most heavily
taxed products you can buy. I love my
country and buying liquor is the most
cost-effective way to give it money.”
Red wine choice
Akarua Rua Pinot Noir 2013 — This
is a real smoochie soft easy red from
Central Otago with a plummy nose
and sweet flavours of omega plums and
blackcurrants. There is a light structure of
acidity and tannin with some aftertaste.
Good value. Drink now till 2017. Dry. $22
My Greek Easter Cake.
You’ve heard the drinkers’ stories . . .
Teza Feijoa and Limeblossom —
Natural and organic iced tea which
is brewed, cooled and the tea leaves
sieved and disposed as garden mulch.
Lovely flavours and very refreshing.
Speight ’s Citrus — Citrus flavoured
beer is everywhere at the moment with
all the big beer companies promoting it.
They have been rather slow when you
consider that Monteith’s started it over
10 years ago with their Summer Ale and
then Radler (lime flavoured). This one
from Speight ’s has your palate thinking
“ is this a beer cider or a cider beer?” It ’s
like a strong shandy. Sweet lemon and
orange with a light malt and minimal
hops makes a perfect drink for those
who dislike the resin hops of regular
beer. 330ml. 4%. $2.
White wine choice
Seifried Gewurztraminer 2014 — If
you like exotic smells and tastes this is
your wine, with aromas of the Medinas
and spice markets of the Middle East
giving you ginger, Turkish delight, nutmeg,
cinnamon in the heady mix. Lighter
flavours are matched with light acidity and
a soft aftertaste. Drink now till 2018. $15
Links Archive March 31st 2015 April 2nd 2015 Navigation Previous Page Next Page