Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Springing Into Spring.

Up here in 'the rapa', it's been spring for sometime. My daffodils are well past their best now and the local lambs are...well to put it bluntly, probably almost ready for 'the works!'

And of course now that spring has officially sprung...we get one, and it won't be the last, of our southerly blasts going through the whole country; snow closing roads, torrential rains causing flooding and freezing temperatures sending me spend quality time wrapped around my fire or heater. Yesterday when I drove home it was 19 degrees C (66.2F), today, I'd be lucky if it was 9 degrees C (48.2F).

BUT in less than 2 weeks, I'll be in Africa and I believe the temperatures in Botswana will be up in the 30's (C), during the day. I'm packing a jacket for the night time, but better not have to wear it while the sun shines! My wee white sparrow legs will be poking out from my shorts...and I will be loving every minute of being warm again!

And we will cook most nights over an open fire, with food wrapped in foil! Wonderful childhood memories involve bonfires at our house or the neighbours, where we tossed potatoes into the embers and came back some time later armed with butter and ate the gorgeous roasted white flesh inside, smothered in butter and seasonings....bliss. Not sure what we will cook, but I'm sure that after a day of negotiating rural roads...anything will be welcome! (accompanied by a glass of wine or two).

No foil in my childhood days, but now, some of my favourite meals are 'parcels'; fish done in foil, with veg inside...a one pack meal. I usually use something like terakihi or gurnard.

Method: Pre heat the oven to 200 degrees C.

Decide which vegetables you want to use. I include some root veg; potato, kumara, celeriac, pumpkin etc, green veg like spinach or kale, and carrots, red onion...whatever you like. If it's a root veg, then you need to mostly cook it first.

Rip off a piece of foil large enough to wrap the meal. Spray with canola oil...or brush with a lightly flavoured oil.

Layer the root veg, then top with fish. season, then add more veg. Don't over do it. Wrap your parcel, not too tightly, you want the steam to be able to form and bake for about 15 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fish fillet. Remove from the oven and let sit for a few minutes.

Open the parcel and either serve straight out of the foil, or carefully slide it onto the plate.
Ok, Ok, I didn't actually make this one, but I would've if I could've!