Category Archives: Fruits


Honey Cheese Balls

Chese-ball3 teaspoons Manawa Honey
1/2 cup finely chopped nuts of your choice. Pecans, walnuts or cashews are my choice
1/2 cup finely chopped dried cranberries
125g crumbled feta cheese
125g cream cheese, softened
1 cup Gruyere or strong tasty cheese, grated
lollipop sticks


Mix the nuts and cranberries on a shallow dish and set aside.

In a food processor, add the feta, cream cheese, Gruyere, and honey. Pulse until well combined.

Use your hands to form tablespoon size balls and roll in the cranberry/pecan mixture.

Place on baking paper and repeat with the rest of the cheese mixture. Top each ball with a lollipop stick and place in the fridge for an hour or so to firm up.

Easy Honey Mixed Nuts

Hny-NutHaving some honey roasted nuts in my pantry is a staple as they can be used for so many things. Mixed with some dried fruits you have a great afternoon snack for the kids or yourself.

A quick blitz and you have a wonderful nut crumb to top a dessert or some ice cream or seasonal baked fruits.

They are also great served with your favourite cheeses with extra Manawa honey on the side.


1 cup raw unsalted almonds

1 cup raw pumpkin seeds

1 cup raw unsalted walnuts

1 cup raw unsalted peanuts

2 tablespoons Manawa Honey

1 tablespoon vegetable oil or melted butter

1 teaspoons ground cardamon

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt


Preheat the oven to 160°C and line a rimmed baking sheet with baking paper.

In a medium bowl, combine nuts with honey, oil and spices, tossing to coat.

Spread nuts out in an even layer on the prepared baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes, stirring halfway through cooking time.

Remove and let cool 10 minutes prior to eating.

Store in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks in the pantry.

Honey Banana Mango Smoothie

bana-mgo-smthySo easy to make and the results are yummy, healthy and kids just love making these. Just 4-ingredients and this smoothie tastes like a banana mango ice cream.


4 bananas (400g). Peeled and cut into pieces, frozen

2 cups (300g) frozen mango pieces, de-stoned and peeled. 

2 Tbsp Manawa honey

1 cup chilled coconut cream


Add the frozen mango pieces to a blender. Add ½ of the coconut milk and blend. You may need to stop and give the ingredients a stir. Blend until its all combined and thick. Add the banana pieces, honey, more coconut cream and blend to combine well till its think and creamy.

Pour out into two glasses and serve.

Pan Seared Salmon on Grapefruit Salad

Salmon-gfruitServes 4


2 Ruby grapefruit
4 cups mixed salad greens
2 cups snow peas tipped and cut into three
1 cup micro-greens of choice
2 ripe avocados, pitted and sliced
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tbsp sweet balsamic reduction
1/2 teaspoon sea salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
Olive oil for cooking salmon
3 150g (5-ounce) salmon fillets (skin off)
1/2 cup honey toasted walnuts, roughly chopped


 Peel and segment grapefruit with a sharp knife on a cutting board; reserve juice in a bowl.

In a bowl mix lemon juice, olive oil, salt, pepper and balsamic so its combined.

In a large bowl add salad greens and pour the dressing and turn to combine.

Divide salad among 4 serving plates. In a small bowl.

 Sprinkle remaining salt and pepper over both sides of salmon. Coat a large nonstick skillet with oil; heat over medium-high heat. Add fish to skillet, and cook until skin is golden and fish releases easily from pan (about 4 minutes). Using a spatula, gently flip fish and cook about 3 minutes more. Once salmon is cooked rest for 2 minutes and then break each fillet into 8 pieces .

While the salmon is cooking place slices of avocado on top of each salad and then place equal amounts of grapefruit pieces on the avocado to form a bed for the salmon to rest on.

Place the salmon pieces on the grapefruit  and dress with honey walnuts and micro-greens.

Pan Fried Trout with Passionfruit Dressing

Pan-Fried-Trout-webRemove the pulp from two ripe purple passion fruit and push it through a strainer to remove the seeds. You should have about two tablespoons of thick extract. 


For the passionfruit dressing 

2 tbsp thick passion fruit extract

1 tsp sugar or honey

3 tbsp neutral tasting oil (Sunflower oil)

A few sprigs of fresh coriander, leaves only (save the stems)

1/4 tsp freshly grated young ginger

1/4 tsp finely sliced hot green chilli

Salt to taste

Chop the coriander leaves finely and whisk all the ingredients together to make an emulsion. Set aside. Whisk again just before serving. 

For the fish 

Serves 2 

1 medium to large trout, cleaned

1/2 cup finely chopped shallots

1/2 cup Olive oil

2 tbsp butter

salt and pepper

Finely chopped coriander stems 


Pat the cleaned fish dry and then rub a mixture of salt, pepper and chopped coriander stems over and inside the fish. 

Heat the oil and butter in a pan (you can bake or grill the fish too, but trout loves this butter bath!) and add the shallots. 

Stir for a minute, then add the fish. Cook both sides on medium heat, 5-6 minutes each side. Remove to a platter and serve it up by removing the meat from each side of the fish with a side of roasted tomatoes or creamy mashed potatoes and a dollop of the passion fruit dressing over the fish.

It also makes a terrific salad dressing – perfumed, sharp and with just a little bite.

Roasted Chicken with Passion Fruit Gravy

Roast-Chicken-Passionfruit-With winter on the way and a cold snap heading up the Island roasts are the order of the day for me. 

This recipe for me produces a slightly fruity flavour to the roast with the balance coming from the soy which brings a salty/sour balance to the sweet 


1 large roasting chicken, size 20 is ideal, thawed if frozen
3 tbsp fresh rosemary leaves, crushed
1 tsp powdered cinnamon
4 tbsp soy sauce
1 cup passion fruit juice (fresh or from concentrate)
1 cup water
2 tbsp melted butter
1 tbsp honey
4 tbsp toasted sesame seeds


Pan juices from roast
2 Tbsp cornflour
1/2 cup passion fruit juice
salt and pepper to taste 
seeds of one passion fruit (optional)


In a small bowl, combine the rosemary, cinnamon, soy sauce and passion fruit juice, honey and blend well. Put the bird in a large zip-loc bag, pour the marinade mixture over the bird, press out excess air and seal the bag. Marinade the bird in the refrigerator overnight, turning the bag over once or twice during this time.

Take the bird out of the refrigerator about 1/2 hour before beginning to roast it. 

Preheat oven to 190C. Put the bird in a large roasting pan, pour the marinade over and around it, and brush the skin of the bird with the melted butter. Put the bird in the oven and roast it, basting from time to time with pan juices. Roast for about 20 minutes per 400g or until the internal temperature reaches 75C. Remove from oven and let stand for 15 minutes, loosely covered with aluminum foil.

For the gravy, stir the cornflour into the passion fruit juice. Heat the juices remaining in the roasting pan, using a wooden spoon to scrape up any solid bits stuck to the roasting pan. Add the passion fruit juice, and bring all to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until the gravy has thickened. Season with salt and pepper and add passion fruit seeds if desired. Pour gravy into a warmed jug.

Carve the chicken and serve with steamed or roasted vegetables of choice.

Alison’s Pantry – Raw Power – New Product Release New Zealand

Raw-Power-1Alison’s Pantry – Raw Power – New Product Release New Zealand 

Gluten-free and Paleo Friendly 

When I saw the new release from Alison’s Pantry, “Raw Power” I got very excited. The first thing that came to mind is that I don’t have to make my own mix that I eat as this has all the ingredients that I would usually use to make my own. 

This mix is great for breakfast with some Greek yoghurt, or Almond milk and is perfect to have on hand mid-morning and afternoon as a healthy snack that will help stabilize blood sugar levels reducing the chance of those afternoon blues when blood sugar drops. 

Having nuts, seeds and dried fruits as a part of our daily diet offers many benefits and one of the most important for me is the way that they help stabilize blood sugar levels and control those sugar lows in our busy lives. They also provide nutrients and minerals important to our daily diet. 

Nuts are packed full of good fats, oils and fibre and natural dried fruits have sugar, nutrients and minerals. We need sugars in out diet and the natural sugars that are found in dried fruits match well with the fats and oils from the nuts to create a stable breakfast and snack meal. 

Raw-Power-webRaw Power mix is a nutrient dense blend of goji berries, raisins, sultanas, coconut chips, Brazil nuts, almonds, hazelnuts, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, hulled buckwheat along with diced dates and apricot pieces. 

You can find Raw Power from Alison’s Pantry in the self-selection departments at New World’s and Pak’N Save stores through-out New Zealand which is great as you can select as much or as little as you want. 

For more about the health benefits of nuts, seeds and dried fruits visit this post. 

Please note: This post is not a paid post. It is my view and thoughts on the new product Raw Power from Alison’s Pantry

Benefits of Nuts and dried fruits as part of our diet

Raw-Power-webBy Chef Jimmy Boswell 

Having nuts and dried fruits as a part of our daily diet offers many benefits and one of the most important is the way that they help stabilize our blood sugar levels and control those sugar lows in our busy lives. They also provide nutrients and minerals important to our daily diet. 

They are very convenient to pack into snack bags that can be “eaten on the run” as they offer in my view an easy and healthy snack that can be eaten anywhere. 

Nuts are packed full of good fats, oils and fiber and natural dried fruits have sugar, nutrients and minerals. We need sugars in out diet and the natural sugars that are found in dried fruits match well with the fats and oils from the nuts to create a stable breakfast and snack meal. 

The study “Nuts as a replacement for carbohydrates in the diabetic diet” (Diabetes Care, August 2011)* suggests that eating about 55 grams, (2 oz) of nuts every day can improve glycemic control and serum lipids in people with type 2 diabetes. 

Fats and oils are an important part of out diet and they help stabilize blood sugar (glucose) control in out bodies. (1) 

What this means is that fats and oils are “slow burning fuels” that help to stabilize blood sugar and allow you to go between meals without feeling so hungry. Fats also send a signal to your brain to tell you when you’re satisfied, so you know when to stop eating. This suggests why people on low-fat diets are so hungry all the time. 

Other recent medical studies indicate that nuts may play an important role in reducing the risk of heart disease. In one study, researchers found that although the benefits were greatest for frequent nut eaters, people who ate nuts even once a week had 25% less heart disease than those who avoided nuts completely. 

Tree nuts are cholesterol-free and chock-full of important nutrients, including protein and fiber. They are also a great source of vitamins such as folic acid, niacin and vitamins E and B6, and minerals like magnesium, copper, zinc, selenium, phosphorus and potassium. 

“What goes up quickly, comes down quickly” 

I am sure that everyone reading this has had that mid-morning or afternoon crash. Studies have shown that people that are on the move all day and rely on marketed  “pick-me-up”  foods, caffeine and sugar to get then through regularly experience these crashes. 

“Convenient snack foods are high in refined carbohydrates, such as white flour and white sugar, which rob the body of enzymes, minerals and vitamins, especially B vitamins. B vitamins are essential for proper brain and nervous system function”. (1) 


*“Nuts as a replacement for carbohydrates in the diabetic diet” (Diabetes Care, August 2011) 

(1) Source: Weston A. Price Foundation 
Replacing Refined Sugars with Natural Sugars One Step At a Time

Baked Pears with Honey Coconut Cream Sauce

Baked-PearsThis dessert is perfect for entertaining because you can make the sauce ahead of time. Let guests choose their own garnish by offering raisins, fresh raspberries or nuts on the side. 

Serves 6 

1 cup plain coconut cream

½ cup raw honey

2 tsp ground cinnamon

2 tbsp ghee

6 medium pears, peeled, cored and halved

½ tsp ground cloves

¼ cup toasted walnuts, chopped (optional) 

Combine the chilled coconut cream with half the honey and the cinnamon in a medium bowl. Chill for at least 1 hour. 

Preheat oven to 175 °C (380 F). Melt the ghee in a pan over medium heat. Add the pear halves to the pan with the remaining honey and cloves. Stir until pears are well coated. 

Transfer the pears to a baking dish, cut-side down, and pour over with the honey from the pan and coat the pears well. Bake for 15 minutes, turning after 8–10 minutes. 

To serve, spoon pears into a small bowl and top with a dollop of honey coconut sauce. Sprinkle with walnuts, if using.

Jimmy’s Easy Orange Marmalade

Jimmy’s Easy Orange Marmalade

Jimmy’s Easy Orange Marmalade

It was before I turned ten that I was taught to make marmalade and relishes. This came from watching my Mum using fruit from our trees as well as from what we had been given. We never bought marmalades and relishes; they were always in the pantry. 

While this recipe makes moderate amount you can make it when you have the seasonal fresh ingredients available. 


6-8 small oranges, weighing about 550-600g
juice of 1 medium lemon
1.4 litres water
1.1 kg granulated sugar 


Start by sterilizing your jam jars. To do this place them in a large saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring 

to the boil and simmer briskly for 10-15 minutes. Remove from the water with tongs, being careful to tip out the water inside and place upside down on a clean surface to dry. 

Next step to do while the jars are simmering is to slice the oranges in half. Using a metal spoon, scoop out the flesh over a bowl to collect any juice that come out and you are extracting the orange flesh. Leave the white pith behind. Too much pith can make it bitter. Reserve the shells. 

Put the flesh, juice and pips if there are any in a food processor and blend until smooth. Push the purée through a sieve into a preserving pan or large heavy-based saucepan.  Now for the orange rind. Scoop out or slice off as much of the pith from the shells as possible.  

  Slice the rind into very thin matchstick strips and  add these to the sieved flesh in the pan.


I myself cut the cups into 2 slices and use a sharp knife to slice the pith
 off the rind. You can also use a good potato peeler to cut the rind away
 from the pith.
Now pour in the lemon juice and water. 
Bring it to the boil and reduce the heat and simmer for 1 to 1 1/2 hours until the rind is very soft and the mixture has reduced by half.  Over a low heat, add the sugar and stir until it has dissolved. Boil for about 10 minutes, skimming off any froth on the surface.  

After 10 minutes, spoon a little of the marmalade onto a cold plate and place in the fridge. If it sets to a firm jelly the marmalade is cooked. If necessary, cook for a further 5-10 minutes and test again. 

Allow the marmalade to cool slightly, about 30 min as the sugar holds a lot of heat  then pour into your sterilized jars and seal when they have cooled.