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    Monday, October 29, 2012

    We Have a New Cocktail - Thank You Absolut

    Over the last two years, we discovered a beach, named “Noever Beach” by Ms Cleo.
    Lovely white sand, a good swimming hole and just perfect, not too far to walk from the car.
     This is last year.

    When we left our house in the hills, to go to the beach this is where we headed

    Well would you believe, our Friend Trishie is living there, of all the beach properties, in Raro, how did we all choice this spot?
    Meant to be, I reckon

    Here is the view looking out over Noever Beach, Sunset Time, last night
    Is this just Paradise, or what?
    Oh got a new Cocktail, courtesy of Ms Trishie
    Absolut have developed a new flavoured Vodka
    Orient Apple and Ginger
    Poured over ice and a good splash of Cranberry Juice
    It’s got to be good for you
    A few wines with friends
    Great end to the day
    So Summer salad for lunch again
    First I made a potato Salad, just a simple one

    ½ a red onion finely sliced
    Handful of copped herbs, Parsley, Basil,Chives
    2 potatoes, boiled in salted water and cut into mouthfuls

    Simple French Dressing
    3 parts olive oil
    1 part lemon juice
    Pinch sugar
    Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

    My favourite Mayo dressing
    2 tablespoons Best Foods Mayo
    Thinned down with
    Juice of half a lemon
    Some sea salt and freshly ground
    If you have an orange, throw in some zest gives it a great citrusy flavour

    First blanch red onion in boiling water for about 30 seconds
    Drain and toss in about 2 tablespoons  French Dressing
    Add herbs and leave to marinate in the fridge

    When potatoes are cooked, fork tender
    Add to onions

    Add some more dressing to moisten
    Back to chill

    To assemble
    Just lay some nice crisp greens on a plate
    Dot around some radish pieces
    Cucumber sliced
    Tomato wedges

    Some Smoked Salmon around or my case Ham
    A good helping of potato salad

    Sprinkle the rest of the salmon or ham on top and drizzle over some of the Mayo
    Great lunch

    Sunday, October 28, 2012

    Fresh Cream Doughnuts - Crisp Tasty Salads- Food of Rarotonga

    Sunday Morning, Doughnut Day

    It’s raining, that’s a bit disappointing, but 1 rainy day after 10 beauties.
    I guess we can’t complain
    Paige the daughter of our hosts appeared at our door with the Sunday Treat Doughnuts. The locals love these, so do we!
    Fresh and Yummy
    Nice Papaya, fresh lemon juice squeezed over to start

    Then the major carbs and fats.
    Most of the food groups covered for breakfast I feel.
    So back to yesterday 
    We went to the market and bought some fresh produce.
    Made a lovely summer salad for lunch
    These are my favourite type of salads

    Vege, (lettuce, radish, tomato, cucumber) with some protein, in this case boiled egg and grated cheese
    Just drizzled with a tasty vinaigrette
    Accompanied with a fresh Baguette, smothered in New Zealand Butter
    Gosh there is a difference in taste with the butter, we export.
    It’s excellent.
    We seem to be consuming quuite a bit of it. Thank God for the Statin Drugs, dissolving the cholesterol!
    Mmmmm maybe not, but we are on holiday

    My skin is a bit of a mess, so I am keeping out of the sun, just going out to dip in the pool, dry off and back into the shade.
    We met up with The Bride and Groom, Tim and Tina
    They need a holiday. They look exhausted but very happy
    Andrew and Cas joined us. Cocktails at the Sunset Pool

    The cocktails. all a bit much for me, too sweet, but they look amazing
    We met Polly (of Course) The Parrot. Queen of The Sunset Resort

    A pleasant interlude
    They are going home Sunday. It has been a very busy fortnight for them
    It was a wonderful wedding. Thank you Tim and Tina.
    We loved it

    Back to the room, Tomato and Basil Sandwiches, with a viewing of
    The Circuit another little cracker of an Australian TV Series
     Looking forward to the Doughnuts in the morning.

    Saturday, October 27, 2012

    Rarotonga -Best Fresh Produce- A Wee Gem

    I  have my cooking Mojo back. I have been swanning about on the coat tails of
    Dan and various restaurants but the now the call of the kitchen and the budget!
    Has brought me back.

    Yesterday I made two excellent dishes worth repeating.
    These dishes were compiled with the ingredients on hand.

    Dan left some Pantry and  Fridge items, along with a little shopping I had done.
    So it was a take on “Pasta Cabonara” for lunch
    And Tuna Fish Cakes for dinner

    But first let me introduce you to Brenda and Craig, our next door neighbours here at The Cooks Oasis
    They like us, love Rarotonga and have visited at least 6 times.
    The difference is, that they come all the way from Toronto.
    That’s love for you

    So I prepared the fish cakes earlier in the day. Giving the ingredients time to meld

    2 Tuna steaks
    1 tablespoon of finely chopped Green Capsicum
    1 tablespoon chopped Dill
    ½ red onion finely chopped
    1 birds eye chili chopped
    Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
    1 egg white
    1 tablespoon mayonnaise

    Just blend together, using your hand to get a good mix
    Set aside and chill for a few hours

    Heat a pan
    Add olive oil
    Dopple in the fishcake mixture
    And fry each side, till just golden brown

    A little lemon squeezed over the top
    Quick grind of Salt and pepper

    Dinner Done
    While I cook Dale is watching Jamie Oliver cooking Italian

    They really have the best produce here in Rarotonga.

    It is not hard to make gorgeous food.
    So here is My Pasta
    As I had an egg yolk leftover, 
    I decided to let it emulsify the sauce with it 
    adding a little Feta cheese for extra flavour

    This was so good.
    When I make it again I will add some of the lovely fresh herbs grown here on the island

    Quite simple, So So Simple in fact

    3 tablespoons olive oil
    3 cloves garlic smashed with some sea salt
    2 little birds eye Chilis, topped and left whole
    ‘We have come to feed Caesar, not to kill his taste buds”, Apologies to you know who

    1 tablespoon lemon zest
    Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
    1 large tomato chopped
    1 egg yolk
    50 gms Feta cheese
    Knob of butter

    2 cups Penne cooked to Manufacturers instructions in salted boiling water

    Gently heat oil in pan
    Add garlic and chilies and let them cook slowly to infuse the oil with all their delicious flavours
    After about 10 minutes
    Add lemon zest, tomatoes
    Toss around
    Season with Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

    Add cooked Pasta
    Meanwhile beat egg yolk,
    crumble in the feta cheese
    Mix and add to the pan

    This would be the time to add some freshly torn basil
    It would look much prettier
    The bonus of tthe small kitchen
    Dinner dishes
    Who would complain about unloading this dishwasher? 

    Friday, October 26, 2012

    Rarotonga - Everyday A Beauty

    The days are racing by, John and Hiria left on Tuesday, we managed to squeeze a nice lunch at The Tamarind Room together.
    Such a delightful Restaurant, The feeling, Bermuda Yacht Club I think

    The food is very good there
    I had Nasi Goering, Dale and Sophia had Vegetable Lasagne
    Joseph had Corn fritters. Didn’t get photos of the others
    Got some budding Food Bloggers though.
    The kids are loving the Mocktails

    Meanwhile we are sticking to wine with ice blocks trying to cut down the intake a little
    Dan by the way did a little experimenting how’s this for Fusion
    Ike Mata Tartare on Bruschetta

    Very yummy. They are eating as much of the fresh Tuna as they can handle
    It is so Beautiful and Cheap up here
    Dan Helen and the kids departed Wednesday.

    As we now have wheels, I was able to transport everyone and the baggage to the airport. Could have been interesting on the bus! 
    Fitted in one last lunch at Luscious Restaurant, opposite the airport

    Once again good luncheon food I had a Fish Burger

    Dale Fish and Chips
    Dan and Helen had their last Ike Mata
    Then it was goodbye to them

    We came home for a nap, a swim then a quiet night.
    After several days of eating out and Dan’s wonderful food
    I really splashed out on dinner!
    Cheese and Tomato toasted sandwiches
    Sat down in front of the TV
    Have some great stuff on the ipad to watch
    Did 2 episodes of “Rake” a great Oz Law drama
    Catch it if you can

    A couple of Iconic Raro sights
    Local Pie
    Must grab one soon

    And this man at the airport. He has been doing this job "Like", Forever. Helps you with your trolleys

    Thursday and a really quiet day.
    Had to exchange our car, nice little silver number now
    Newer! Well it has a radio, which doesn’t work
    And the Rarotonga “Air con special”
    Open windows

    It was cleaner too

    So Let’s go shopping
    The essentials
    Off to the  4 Sale Fish for some Tuna

    CITC for wine

    Lemons and tomatoes, Fresh Bread
    Vege and we are set for food for the next couple of days

    It was fun to drive around the Island again.
    The old familiar places
    Its so good, that I am used to small kitchens
    I made a simple Rice and Tuna dish 
    Might look a bit like a Dog's Dinner but delicious
    Settled down to more episodes of "Rake"
    Life's Not too Bad Really