Chicken kare-kare (Chicken stew in peanut sauce)

Chicken kare-kare
Chicken kare-kare

THE VERY FIRST DISH that came to mind when I was contemplating to become a vegetarian for the sake of love was kare-kare. It would be very difficult to give up. But love prevailed and I never had kare-kare since then. This was two decades ago. As fate would have it, the love was eventually lost and I had since gone back to eating meat (poultry, yes. four-legged animals, no.)

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The carrot cake that almost started an angry mob

Carrot cake with pistachios and walnuts
Carrot cake with pistachios and walnuts

About two weeks ago, I met an American from Michigan who moved to New Zealand and unexpectedly became a Kiwi farmer. In 2009, he started a WordPress blog called Moon Over Martinborough to chronicle their life in the farm which eventually led to a best-selling book of the same title. Carrot cake everyone wants is the most enticing story behind a recipe that I’ve ever read. It teaches you a lesson about sharing your most beloved recipes, unless you want an angry mob of pitchfork-carrying farmers at your door.

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A road trip

New Zealand passionfruit
New Zealand passionfruit

I wish I was blogging about passionfruit cheesecake and eating one right now. Wishing is one thing, making it happen is another. Perhaps another time! For now I just marvel at the thought and sight of these wonderful, wrinkly, sour and sweet little things called passionfruit.

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Christine’s berry sour cream cake

Berry sour cream cake
Christine Hodge’s berry sour cream cake

This berry delicious cake is a masterpiece of Christine Hodge of Fig Tree Cafe in Upper Hutt, Wellington. If you are from Wellington City, it is worth driving 30km north just for a plate of Fig Tree Cafe’s berry sour cream cake, believe me! Christine finally revealed her well-kept secret recipe for the readers of FishHead magazine. She rocks!

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Cinnamon chicken tagine

Cinnamon chicken tagine

For Valentine’s Day, I received three gifts from my gorgeous partner-in-crime JD. First, a flower garden he cultivated in the backyard at 6AM in the morning of Valentine’s Day.

JD and Dolly's Valentine's Day Dinner

Second, a Jamie Oliver-inspired candlelit dinner for two in our kitchen (he cooked 3 dishes in 30 minutes!) and last but not the least, a huge gift-wrapped box. Inside was an orange tagine.

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Healthy plum and prune jam

Plum and prune jam on toast rye bread
Plum and prune jam on rye bread toast

“Sugar is the new fat.” The first time I heard this said (by someone who published a book on the matter) was at the International Food Blogger Conference held in Seattle, mid 2013. True? Look around and what do you see overweight people are eating? French fries? (we call it “chips” down here, btw) Fried chicken? Burgers? Look again. Ice cream? Muffins? Cakes? Milk chocolate? Cronuts? Yes!

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