Stefano's courtyard on Waiheke is great for long lunches.
Teenagers feel right at home at the funky Rock-it Kitchen in Raglan.
Delectable Coconut Paleo Pancakes.
Good grief, it’s nearly over! The Gourmet Within crew has been holidaying all over the North Island, sneakily checking out foodie deliciousness wherever we go.
Carmel and Chef Mark were in Waiheke with their family; they made their traditional pilgrimage to Stefano’s Italian Pizza and Pasta in Surfdale. Apparently they all experience terrible cravings for Stefano’s Feta e Aglio pizza, which includes artichokes, feta, garlic, rosemary and olives.
Kathryn was in Wellingon, where she was most excited to see Whangaripo Buffalo Cheese’s new Buffalo Yoghurt stocked in Commonsense Organics - we've since found out that some of their products are available in all of their other stores too, including Auckland's Mt Eden shop.
Your blogger was in Raglan, where our extended whanau indulged in the most awesome breakfast at the Rock-it Kitchen, on the road out to Wainui beach. Seriously good, imaginative fry-ups that are gorgeously presented – and great grafitti’d booths, too!
In a spooky, creamy double-up, I was also checking out yoghurt – Raglan Coconut Yoghurt – which we've read about online… turns out you can get it right here in Matakana at Nosh. You’d use them for different reasons – buffalo yoghurt is rich and luscious, while the creamy dairy-free coconut form is great for allergy sufferers.
Anyway, home we all came, and now it’s time to face the back to school scenario. Whether you're feeling relief or grief, a big family pancake breakfast is always good, so treat your offspring to either (or both) of these options over the weekend… one decadent, one healthy – starting with a good basic pancake recipe you can top with your own delectable creations. Post a pic on our facebook page if you get carried away!
Basic pancake recipe – makes about 8
1 cup flour 1 tsp baking powder pinch of salt 2 eggs 300ml milk (approx) 25g melted butter
Sift flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl (no sifter? it works just as well to whisk the dry ingredients together I find). Make a well in the middle and break in the two eggs and start whisking them slowly, bringing in the flour from the sides of the bowl a little at a time... begin to incorporate the milk at the same time, and once the batter is smooth, add the melted butter. Let the mixture sit for a while before you start cooking.
Tip: it really helps to pour the mixture into a jug so you don’t have to frantically spoon it into the pan, which can create an uneven pancake.
Bananas Foster pancakes - serves 4
This is an alcoholic, caramelised, fruity mix, which in its original form makes a great dessert. Leave the alcohol out for a family breakfast, or… not? Great for a cold morning – the rum’ll warm the cockles of your heart, arrr!
Bananas Foster was invented in the late 1940s in famed New Orleans French Quarter restaurant Brennan’s. Owner Owen Brennan named the recipe for his mate Richard Foster from the New Orleans Crime Commission. We’d love to know what was behind that story… 2 tblsp butter ½ cup brown sugar ¼ cup rum 2 peeled and sliced bananas marscapone or whipped cream to serve
In a large frypan, heat butter, sugar and rum over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until smooth and bubbly – around 4 to 6 minutes. Add bananas, and heat, gently swirling skillet, until bananas are just warmed through – 1 to 2 minutes. Spoon on to pancakes, top with mascarpone or whipped cream and tuck in.
Coconut Paleo Pancakes - makes about 10-12
This Paleo pancake recipe has no dairy or grain and is packed with healthy nutrients in the forms of fruit, nuts and proteins. Cashew cream is trending big time right now and can be used just about everywhere you’d use normal cream. Give it a go!
1 pear, quartered, cored 1 cm cube raw ginger, finely grated or 1 tsp ground ginger ½ cup coconut sugar 1 cup dessicated coconut ground to a fine powder or coconut flour ½ cup ground almonds 3 eggs ¼ tsp baking soda dissolved in 1 tblsp warm water
In a blender whizz the first six ingredients to a smooth mixture, then mix in the baking soda/water mixture. Gently fry spoonfuls in a little coconut oil until browned then flip and fry until cooked through. Serve with a dash of maple syrup or cashew cream.
1 cup cashews ½ cup water (up to 1 cup for a thinner cream) Dash vanilla extract or vanilla paste 1 tbsp maple syrup (or more to taste) Pinch Himalayan salt
Blend all together in a powerful blender until smooth.