Flavour Heaven Cured Salmon


A few months ago, I attended a wonderful workshop at Preserved, where we learned how to cure all sorts of meat. Preserving meat by curing was surprisingly easy! Ever since then, I’ve been trying my newly learnt skills whenever I had a chance.

One of the demonstration that afternoon was a fennel cured salmon, and we got to taste some that were ready (as were all the other ones we learnt to make). The salmon was not further cold smoked after curing. Even though the flavour was lovely, I rather miss the smoky flavour. I haven’t committed to invest in a cold smoker, so when I decided to try my hand at curing salmon, I decided to toast the fennels, and use soy sauce. Soy sauce has that sort of woody, smoky tone, which came from been fermented. The result was so wonderful and drool-inducing, the store-bought cold smoked salmon is no longer an item of desire for us.

Here are the ingredients I used: Continue reading


“When Friends Visit from Afar,

isn’t it a happy time?!” — Confucius

First we played at Castle Hill.

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Then we fired up Big Bill for some awesome pizzas!


It was a rather last minute decision, but I decided since we had to wait for pizza dough Continue reading

Thunderstorm Baking

Saturday was gorgeously sunny and hot, but with an afternoon forecast of thunderstorm, I thought it may not be the best idea to invite friends around for an outdoor wood-fired pizza evening. That didn’t stop me firing up Big Bill the clay oven though. I mixed up some sourdough in the morning, and Big Bill bread is just that much nicer than electric oven bread.


I fired the oven up around 4pm. While Big Bill was getting hot, I made some pizza and focaccia dough, as well as shaped the sourdough loaves. Just when I made a giant pizza for Kiwi Bird and I for dinner around 6pm, rain started promptly.


It wasn’t too much of a bother running in and out from the kitchen to relay bakings from Big Bill. The yummy wood-fried pizza was definitely worth it! (The rain never actually got very heavy.)


Then 2 trays of fluffy focaccia baked for 20 mins at over 250C. Half of one also disappeared into our bellies promptly. Continue reading



We discovered a walk up to Patutu Peak, from where we could see the North Island. (I thought that was pretty exciting!)


Can you see the land across the sea? It was a very warm day and a little hazy, but the North Island is definitely there!


The Kaikoura Ranges had a dump of snow just two days before we were there, even though it’s well into November, which is our summer! I’m not complaining. I love snow capped mountains – don’t you?


Link to topomap.