Sunday 30 December 2012

Mussels and Chorizo Hotpot

Mussels and Chorizo Hotpot

Tonight my wife made a dish from a magazine she had been reading. It was a mussel and chorizo hotpot.

The chorizo she used was a Swiss Deli Spanish Chorizo. This was purchased from Moore Wilsons. This maker is not known to me. They are based in East Tamaki in Auckland. The chorizo is nice to eat, the dried smoked red peppers give the sausage its colour, coupled with paprika for strong flavour it makes for pleasant eating. The initial flavour on the palate is mild; although it does have a stronger, and pleasant after taste. The texture of the sausage was a medium to coarse. The mussels are New Zealand green lipped mussels.

The mussel and chorizo hotpot is an easy dish to make. The chorizo sausage was an adjunct to the dish, not the primary focus or flavour, this belongs to the mussels. Coupled with summer salad of lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes and sun flower seeds a pleasant meal was had by all. It would also be good accompanied by crusty bread to soak up some of the juices.

The link to the recipe is

Cost per kilo: $35.71

Wednesday 26 December 2012

Satiated at Christmas

Satiated at Christmas

A good day was had by all yesterday. We had lunch at my sister’s home. A glorious Wellington day, the hottest since 1934 according to the paper, it was a humid 29 degrees. A running commentary on the cloud structures over the Orongorongo Ranges and the Wairarapa by brother in law the meteorologist meant any chance of thunder storms would be identified well in advance. The weather was fantastic. The kids ended up having a water fight, a great day to run around outside and get wet. As my boys realised you shouldn’t worry about water pistols or spray guns, the bucket is the most effective method of transferring a bulk amount of water onto a target. One adult was drenched; the rest escaped such a deluge.

I barbecued sausages and steak. The steak was sirloin marinated in red wine, fresh ginger and an orange and tarragon mustard. The sausages were Island Bay pork and fennel, and Park Avenue kolbaz.

For review of the kolbaz refer to my blog post on the 11 November 2012. I have decided that kolbaz is best eaten cold; I had one sausage for lunch yesterday, and three for breakfast this morning. I have to get up increasingly early to beat my sons to the fridge!

I washed the food down with a beer, Emerson’s Bookbinder. This is a brown ale that is full of a malty flavour and refreshing on a hot day. My father in law, a man in his eighties said it tasted like Tui Beer used to taste like. He grew up in the Wairarapa in the 1930s and 40s. He said Tui used to get better with age. Tui is now a pale insipid beer that I try to avoid.

The Island Bay Butcher’s pork and fennel are a thin sausage, the fennel flavour is mild and compliments the finely ground pork. You can see the green flecks of the fennel interspersed within the meat, if seeds are used they have been finely ground. These were popular with the family and all the sausages were consumed and enjoyed.  

The other meats available for lunch were ham and salmon.

The barbecue was enjoyable and sausages we ate were appreciated. We all arrived home replete and satiated from another fine Christmas lunch.

Monday 24 December 2012

The Mircomanagement of Sausage Selection

The Micromanagement of Sausage Selection

After some thought I decided to bring two varieties of Park Ave Quality Meats sausages for the Christmas lunch. Kolbaz and lamb and mint, which would satisfy those seeking a flavoursome sausage along with a sausage with a more elementary flavour.

In a phone conversation with my sister, which my wife was listening in to, I was informed that they both thought I should be bringing pork and fennel sausages. Knowing the dynamics of my family, pork and fennel sausages it is. Not that there is any micromanagement going on here!

I went to Moore Wilsons and purchased some Island Bay Butcher’s pork and fennel sausages. These are a thin sausage and I chose them over the Harmony pork and fennel due to the size of the sausage.

Our whanau is fortunate that on Christmas Day we are able to bring a large range of quality food, and if late additions are requested they can easily be accommodated. Many people are not in this position. Although Christmas is time for family and eating, we must also remember that not all members of society have this privilege.

The post Christmas posting will give you the response to the sausages.

Merry Christmas. Happy blogging.

Saturday 22 December 2012

The Punter Knows Best

The punter knows best

Today I went to collect some of my holiday supplies of sausages from Park Ave Quality Meats. I had ordered 3 kilos of kolbaz sausages. I arrived at the shop around 10am. While people were not queuing onto the road, this situation was almost reached. There were 14 people in the shop. The counter allows roughly 4 people to be served at once. As I observed, people like quality and will support a business that meet their high expectations. It took a while to be served, most people were buying non sausage products and wait was worth it.
Out of the bag:

I will be taking the kolbaz away on holiday, my sons and I are also going tramping in Nelson Lakes National Park for 6-7 days. These sausages will be part of the diet while in the hills.
Cut up ready for packing. For a review of kolbaz see this link.

Monday 17 December 2012

The Christmas Dilemma

The Christmas Dilemma

Each Christmas our whanau gathers at the home in Wellington, for a Christmas Day lunch. The style of the function has evolved over the years. In the late 1980s and 1990s it was the older generation with their adult children, then the adult children started to have their own children. Cousins have attended, but as their family grows, they have now dispersed with people in Wellington, Auckland and London. This year no cousins will be in Wellington over Christmas. For a period of time there was the high excitement of presents and young kids. Now the youngest child is eight and our daughter is oldest of her generation at seventeen. The babies who belong to the cousins will be Wanaka and Auckland. So a relaxed Christmas lunch with the whanau; fine food and drink, joyous conversation, and hopefully good weather, will embrace us all. A wonderful Wellington day with us sitting outside and having lunch is my ideal.

Lunch this year is at my sister’s home. Her husband is a meteorologist. He will cop the flak for his personal responsibility for any inclement weather.

I generally offer to bring meat for the barbecue, one component of the meat is sausages. This year I bought a sirloin steak, I will marinate this and cook on the barbecue. There will be fourteen people for lunch and the steak should feed them all. However the vexed question is: What sausages do I bring? Just as life is diverse so are my relatives’ tastes in sausages. The older generation are in their eighties and all of them like a simple sausage, my nieces and nephew are not keen on sausages that excite the taste buds. And you know what I prefer. So with the aim to please them all; but also trying to educate the whanau on the wider points of sausage I appreciation so I need to put some thought to this.

Look out for a further post on the outcome of the great sausage decision.  




These sausages were brought from Moore Wilsons.

They are a large fat sausage. These sausages can be bought as either medium or hot, so for those who are regular readers you will know I purchased the hot variety.

I made a sausage and bean dish, one of our family specials. Spiced sausage and cannelloni beans; tomatoes and bit of balsamic vinegar for a slightly acid taste to the dish. I cut the sausages in different ways so the eater can identify the type of sausage they are eating. I also used kabonosy from Park Ave Quality Meats in the dish.

The cacciatori are a chunky coarsely ground sausage, this is a texture I prefer. They are spiced with a variety of seeds and spices that you can see in the texture of the sausage. They are also hot for my palate. So to have bite size pieces is a preferable method when eating them. They were very hard to chew. The mandibles received a very good work out before the sausage slid down the gullet. While these sausages were pleasant to eat, I would give them an average rating within the context of hotter spiced sausages. My wife ate couple of pieces and then decided to concentrate on the kabanosy. The kids just stuck with the kabonosy.

 I was able to enjoy the left overs the following day.

Cost per kilo: $29.90