Friday, 23 August 2019

A New Zealand book every kid should read before the age of 12 - The Bone Tiki by David Hair

The New Zealand Book Council came up with a list of books by New Zealanders that they reckon every kid should have read by the age of 12.  I decided to check out the ones I haven't read and post about the ones I agreed were good (in no particular order).

I am thankful to have read The Bone Tiki.  It was a rollicking good read with lots of action.  I think most boys and men would really enjoy it.

It is a story about the fight between good and evil where time flicks between the modern world (2009) and the world of Maori myths and legends.  Think it as a sort of Kiwi Harry Potter…

You don't have to be a New Zealander to enjoy this one but if you are you'll inhale some tikanga Maori along the way.

This is the first in a series.  I'm not going to read the others – the violence was a bit over the top for me = necessary for the story but still….

Foodie Friday – Trifle

When I was a kid, no festive meal was complete without a trifle. Trifles have been made in England since the 1500's.

Why call this rich dessert a trifle (or not important). 
Who knows!

Thanks to Delia for this traditional trifle recipe:


For the custard:
425ml double cream
4 large egg yolks
25g golden caster sugar
1 level dessertspoon cornflour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the filling:
5 trifle sponges
150ml Madeira (or dry sherry)
2 tablespoons seedless raspberry jam
275g fresh or frozen raspberries
2 medium sized bananas
For the topping:
275ml double cream
50g toasted flaked almonds


It’s best to start this with the filling, so slice the sponges in half lengthways, spread one half with jam and place the original half back on top.
Cut each one into three mini sandwiches, and place these sideways up in the bowl (they should all fit into a single layer). Now stab them with a small knife and carefully and slowly pour the Madeira over all of them. Then leave on one side so the sponges will absorb the liquid. Place the cream in a pan over a gentle heat and heat it to just below simmering point, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon. While the cream is heating, use a balloon whisk to whisk together the egg yolks, sugar and cornflour mixture and the vanilla in a medium bowl with a cloth underneath to steady it. Then, whisking the egg mixture all the time with one hand, gradually pour the hot cream into the bowl.
When it's all in, immediately return the whole lot back to the saucepan using a rubber spatula. Now back it goes on to the same gentle heat as you continue whisking until the custard is thick and smooth, which will happen as soon as it reaches simmering point. If you do overheat it and it looks grainy, don't worry, just transfer it to a jug or bowl and continue to whisk until it becomes smooth again.
Pour the custard into a jug or bowl, cover the surface with clingfilm and leave to cool. You can also watch how to make custard by clicking on our Cookery School Video on the right. To assemble the trifle, tip the bowl from side to side to make sure all the Madeira has soaked into the sponges, the peel and slice the bananas.
Then scatter the raspberries over the sponges and press them down with a fork to release their juices then scatter the bananas over the raspberries. Now pour the custard all over. Finally whip the cream till thick, spoon it over and spread it around, and scatter the almonds over it all.
Cover the bowl with clingfilm and chill until needed