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Saturday, 22 June 2013

It doesn't need to be perfect

A good thing about livin' slow is that not everyone is doing it, which makes it easy to buy things like pasta machines on Trade Me. I just bought one that had been tried once only.

New to me Avanti pasta maker

Yesterday I decided to try it out, and discovered why the previous owner probably gave up after one attempt.
Like anything, it takes practise to make good looking pasta. I cooked the better looking fettuccine without taking a pic; they improved in looks the more I made, and my speed increased with practise too.

Imperfect first attempt! Still tastes good.

The upside - it will just improve, and it really tasted good. Cost-wise, I think it would work out to be a reasonable cost saver, plus no plastic packaging.


I love living in subtropical Northland. While the other end of the country is experiencing snow, we were at the beach today, walking the dog and fossicking with the metal detector. We only found a few bits of old wire today, but we seem to meet lots of curious people. One woman today was keen to know whether I had hired my metal detector as she had lost a ring in a barn last week, and despite sifting through sawdust had been unable to find it. She only lives 25 minutes away, so I took her number and will pop over there next weekend.  

Another great thing about our climate is being able to grow subtropical fruit. Today we planted 2 more Tahitian lime trees, a tropical guava and another feijoa tree. We have a bit of traffic past here in summer, heading to the beach  and if we can grow a surplus I think gate sales would be a bonus.

Weekend Baking

I am always looking for recipes for something to go with a cup of coffee that is not too sweet, and has decent nutritional value, and yesterday I made this cake...


1 cup of dates
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup of maple syrup (but I use 1 tablespoon of golden syrup instead)
1/2 tsp of baking soda
2 tsp vanilla
2 Tbsp lite olive oil ( I use rice bran oil)
2 eggs
3 Apples, peeled and finely chopped
1 1/2 cups of self raising flour
pinch of salt

Heat oven to 180C. Prepare a ring tin or loaf tin by lining it with baking paper.
Heat dates,water and syrup in a pan, then take off the heat and add the baking soda.
Mash lightly.
Cool 10 minutes then add vanilla, eggs & oil. Mix.
Add apples, then flour and salt.
Place in prepared pan, bake 50 minutes.

lumberjack cake - quite moist, lovely warm with coffee with a cake fork.

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