Sunday, February 27, 2011

Halloumi & Pomegranate summer salad

It's the last day of summer here in Australia, and while the cooler weather is already beginning to nip at our feet our last hurrah for warmer days comes in the form of this absolutely delicious summer salad using one of our favourite spice blends.
This Halloumi & Pomegranate Summer Salad was created by Hayssam "taste-extraordinaire" Bejjani from Sami's Kitchen and we love it:
  • 2 x Halloumi cheese blocks (Pittas is best)
  • 1 x fresh Pomegranate fruit
  • 200g fresh Tomato (we used the small grape Tomato)
  • 3-4 sprigs of fresh Mint
  • 1-2 tbsp Sami’s Kitchen Zaatar blend
  • 50ml Caramelised Balsamic Vinegar (love Pukara Estate)
Cut the Halloumi cheese into slices, approximately 1cm thick.
(It’s always a good idea to wash the Halloumi in fresh running water after removing from the packaging)
Heat a large frypan, add a touch of olive oil to avoid sticking, and grill the Halloumi slices on both sides until golden; this should take no more than 1-2 minutes per side.
Remove the Halloumi from the pan and let it cool down, then cut each slice into 4-6 small pieces.
Remove the Pomegranate “pearls” from the flesh of the fruit and place in a bowl.
Cut the Tomato into slices or if using the small grape Tomato simply slice in half.
Remove the Mint leaves from the stalk.
Find a nice big platter; place the Halloumi at the bottom; add the Pomegranates, Tomato and Mint on top; sprinkle the Zaatar over the whole lot and then drizzle the Caramelised Balsamic Vinegar.
You may add some Salt to taste.
This should look impressive and be bursting with refreshing flavour. Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Flicks, Food and Friends

March 26th friends - Put that date in your diary, pack your picnic blanket and round up the crew. Rosnay Organic Farms is putting on their second Flickerfest!
There is a free afternoon farm tour at 4:30 for those who haven't yet ventured out to Rosnay land.
Dinner and drinks is from 6:30pm (RSVP's required by the 22nd) and the first film kicks off at 8pm.
Entry costs and booking forms are available on the Rosnay website

We are looking forward to rugging up, sipping some fine wine and gobbling up some amazing organic olives.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Relaxing Elderflower Tea

This week's recipe in the spotlight uses the award winning Elderflower Concentrate by Tasmania's Ashbolt Farm. With all the exciting new products coming onto the market, countdowns to the Taste of Sydney festival and Easter consuming us at Gershgoods, the Relaxing Elderflower Tea recipe is just what we need to relax at the end of the day and calm our busy minds.

The Elderflower has many health advantages, traditionally used as an aid against respiratory illnesses such as asthma, colds and influenza, skin purification and general detoxification. 

Ashbolt Farm's Elderflower Concentrate has been entered into 4 consecutive Wrest Point Fine Food Awards (2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009) and won Gold Medals in each year and a National Champion Award.

Stunning as a winter morning’s de-tox, or great before bed for a relaxing night’s sleep.

ASHBOLT Elderflower Concentrate
Hot water
Lemon or Ginger as desired

Step 1 - For those who like fresh ginger, pour boiling water over grated or thinly sliced ginger in a plunger pot or a cup, allow to cool a moment or two (to maximise the herbal benefits of the elderflower) and then add ASHBOLT elderflower concentrate and perhaps a slice of lemon / lime to the cup.
Step 2 - NOTE: Some people add Elderflower concentrate to ‘freshen’ the flavour of fruit-based tea bags and to extend the concentrate a little further.
Step 3 - Add gin or vodka, if desired, for a relaxing toddy.

For more yummy recipes from Ashbolt Farm - visit their website or contact us.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

An eye for Hollows

We at Gershgoods support a number of charities, community groups and foundations that we believe are outstanding in their fields and are doing everything in their power to improve the environment, aid those in need and support third world and indigenous communities.

This week we're placing a spotlight on the Fred Hollows Foundation.

Inspired by the work of the late Professor Fred Hollows (1929-1993) an eye doctor, surgeon and internationally recognised social justice activist. Prof. Fred Hollows had a belief that all people had the right to good health and the best eye care available.
Fred was also committed to improving the quality of health amongst Aboriginal communities. His work took him all over the world and he made a major impact on reducing the cost of cataract prevention in third world countries to as little as $25.
The foundation has helped to restore sight to over 1 million people worldwide and continues to help those in need.

As with any charitable organisation, they're services are not free. Gershgoods gladly donates to the Fred Hollows Foundation regularly because we believe everyone deserves to see what a beautiful world we live in.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Heilala Vanilla Paste = Overall Runner Up Award

Keeping with this weeks' Heilala Vanilla theme we would like to share with you something that popped up in our inboxes this morning of which we are very proud of.

Heilala Vanilla's Paste product has won the Overall Runner Up bestowment at this years Cuisine 2011 Artisan Awards held in New Zealand.
The paste has been and continues to be a massive hit amongst hat winning chefs and home cooks. Heilala have produced a 100% consistent vanilla flavour in their paste which is made from vanilla grown on coconut husk frames in organic virgin soil, hand polinated and dried. Just a few of the reasons why we love Heilala Vanilla.

Cuisine is New Zealand's leading good food and wine magazine and each year a selection of artisan producers are nominated by readers and held before the Cuisine magazine's judging panel comprising of chief editors of the good food mag and leading respected profiles in the industry such as Enzo Bettio, founder of Delamine Fine Foods and owner of Vin Alto; Jacqui Dixon, co-founder of Sabato; Julie Moore, co-founder of Moore Wilson; Jessica Godfrey, marketing manager of Caffe L'affare.

The winners of this years' award Helen and Richard Dorresteyn of Clevedon Valley Buffalo Company astounded judges with their Buffalo Yoghurt, a additive free thick-set velvety yoghurt.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Heilala Vanilla Passion Martini

We're holding onto summer with a tight grip before it slips away in a matter of days.
One of the many things we cherish on balmy days is a relaxing icy cold beverage.
Our good friends at Heilala Vanilla have put together a few mouth-watering cocktail recipes featuring their premium vanilla extract and syrup.
Our favourite this week is the Vanilla Passion Martini...

1 tablespoon Heilala vanilla sugar on saucer
1 egg white, whisked to frothy
2 ounces/60 mls Passion Fruit vodka
1 teaspoon Heilala vanilla syrup
Juice of half a lime

Dip a clean finger in egg white and run around rim of martini glass. Dip glass in Heilala vanilla sugar and allow to dry.
Fill a martini shaker with ice. Add vodka, lime juice and Heilala vanilla syrup. Shake vigorously until well blended. Strain and pour into prepared martini glass.

Serve immediately.

Other delicious cocktail recipes using Heilala Vanilla can be found on their website: