The mighty quince

There’s a garden in my neighbourhood with a quince tree on the front lawn. At this time of year it’s festooned with fat golden quinces.

Plums, plums, plums

Meet Mr Billington, my wonderful plum tree. (Or maybe it’s Mrs Billington?) Either way, this tree is having a great summer. We have an amazing abundance of plums right now. We have so many plums that the birds can’t eat them all.  Mr Billington is a mere six years...

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Glorious artichokes

Globe artichokes have always been a favourite part of a New Zealand summer for me. They’re beautiful sculptural plants, which look like giant, non-spiny thistles. Globe artichokes are delicious and they're pretty easy to grow, if you have a sunny, sheltered garden and...

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Volare: our daily bread

This summer my top choice of bread has to be Volare’s beautiful sourdough buns and Italian-style ciabatta. They’re perfect with a barbecue (or any other time actually). We’re so lucky to have Volare in Hamilton.  Volare is a fairly young business, started six or seven...

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Hobbit food

Unless you’ve spent the last decade living in a hole in the ground, you’ll probably be aware that this part of the world is “The Shire” for Peter Jackson’s film versions of The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings.  The spruced-up Hobbiton film set near Matamata is now a...

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Loquat season

Our loquat tree has had a wonderful long season this year. There are still plenty of golden fruit on the tree in mid December. The birds get quite a few, but there are enough for me. This morning I had freshly picked loquats with yoghurt for breakfast. I love the...

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Amazing asparagus

Tonight I'm cooking some beautiful spray-free Les Asperges asparagus from the Hamilton Farmers' Market. It must be getting towards the end of the asparagus season. Sometimes mid-week I get tempted to buy asparagus from the supermarket, but we can always tell the...

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