Slow Cooked BBQ Pulled Pork

I’d never been a huge fan of pork but that changed as soon as I tried pulled pork. It was at the Martinborough fair where my husband ordered a smoky slow cooked bbq pulled pork burger and it tasted amazing!  Tender, succulent and full of flavour,  I probably ate more than just a bite when I asked to try it!

After that I went on a mission to create delicious pulled pork at home. The good news is melt in your mouth, full of flavour bbq pulled pork is actually simple to make, especially using the slow cooker Crock-Pot.  You can use cheaper, tougher cuts of meat and the slow cooking process makes them deliciously melt in your mouth tender.

The Crock-Pot I used is the Lift & Serve CHP450 model which is perfect for help yourself style meals like pulled pork.  The liftable lid makes it easy to serve your own without having to take the lid on and off all the time.   You can check out the new models of Crock-Pot here.

This makes a delicious easy workday meal or something tasty for the weekend too.



Here’s the recipe:

BBQ Pulled Pork


BBQ Pulled Pork



  • 1.5kgpork shoulder or leg
  • 1tablespoonsmoked paprika
  • 1teaspoonmustard powder
  • 1teaspoonthyme
  • 2teaspoonsoregano
  • 1teaspoongarlic powder + 1 extra teaspoon
  • ½teaspooncumin
  • Salt and pepper
  • ½cupapple cider vinegar
  • ½-1cupBBQ saucedepends how saucy you like it


  1. Cut the visible fat layer off the pork.  Rub over the herbs and spices and season with salt and pepper.  Place the pork into the Crock-Pot.  Pour around the apple cider vinegar and put the lid on the Crock-Pot.  Turn to low and leave to cook for 8 hours.
  2. Pour out the liquid and reserve ½ cup.  Place the liquid in a small bowl and scoop any fat from the top (sometimes I add some ice cubes to cool it down and coagulate any fat which can make it taste a bit greasy) then mix through the BBQ sauce.
  3. Using two forks, pull apart the pork in the Crock-Pot. Season with salt, pepper and sprinkle over the extra spoon of garlic powder.  Mix through the BBQ sauce mixture.


WIN WIN WIN -competition closed

I’m giving away the Crock-Pot Lift & Serve CHP450 model so you can create delicious slow cooked meals at home. To be in the draw, simply check out the Crock-Pot website and tell me what recipe you think you’d try out if you won.

Competition closes 14th July 2017 is open to NZ residents only.

This post was made possible thanks to Crock-Pot







Crispy turmeric pancakes with Manuka smoked salmon and other entertaining recipes with Regal Salmon

Can you believe it’s December already? With December comes summer, Christmas, long nights and warm days plus plenty of time for entertaining. Something delicious and nutritious for nibbles and main dishes over the festive season is salmon.  It’s high in protein, packed with Omega 3 fatty acids, it tastes great and there are so many ways you can use it. To help you kick off the festive season I’m sharing two new recipes using Regal Salmon – crispy turmeric garlic pancakes with manuka smoked salmon and roast kumara, and beetroot salad with lemon herb salmon and raspberry vinaigrette.

The pancakes are an impressive looking appetiser that are something a little bit different yet delicious and the roast vegetable salad is simple yet still that little bit special thanks to the salmon.

Regal Salmon have a wide range of products that are really easy to use and are packed with flavour.  I’ve used Regal manuka smoked salmon slices and Regal Lemon & Herb Wood Roasted Salmon to create no fuss recipes that are both quick and easy to make.

Here are the recipes!

Crispy turmeric pancakes with manuka smoked salmon slices

These gluten free crispy pancakes have a neat honeycomb look thanks to the use of soda water. Topped with garlic and chives sour cream, sprouts and Regal Manuka Smoked Salmon, they’re a delicious change to the usual salmon pancakes. The manuka smoked salmon is from the Regal Artisan range and it has an amazing flavour that really make these outstanding.  These are best eaten on the day of making, or the pancakes go a little soggy.

Makes 15 small pancakes – simply double the recipe for more

For the pancakes:

½ cup rice flour
¼ teaspoon turmeric
¼ teaspoon garlic powder
1 heaped dessertspoon sour cream
½ cup + 1 tablespoon cold soda water
Olive oil for the pan

For toppings:

2 tablespoons sour cream
3 teaspoons chopped chives
Sprinkle of garlic powder

Radish sprouts


Regal Manuka Smoked Sliced Salmon.


In a medium sized bowl, beat together all the pancake ingredients with a whisk so that the sour cream is well broken up and the mixture is smooth.  It should be a fairly runny batter.

Heat a non-stick fry pan over a medium heat.  Add 2-3 tablespoons of oil. When the oil is hot, add tablespoons of the batter and fry until the edges start to go brown and it looks crispy. Then flip and cook the other side.  Place on paper towels to blot up any excess oil.

To assemble:

Mix the sour cream, chives and garlic powder.  Place about half a teaspoon on each pancake.  Top with a chunk of avocado, sprouts and a slice of Regal Manuka Smoked Sliced Salmon.

Roast Kumara and Beetroot Salad with Lemon Herb Salmon and Raspberry Vinaigrette

For an easy but impressive dinner or lunch this roast kumara and beetroot salad with Regal King Salmon Lemon & Herb Wood Roasted Salmon is quick to make yet looks and tastes impressive.  The salmon is already flavoured, so it’s just a matter of roasting vegetables, making a dressing and assembling it on the plate.

Makes four serves

2 beetroot
3 large orange kumara
3 large golden kumara
50g feta cheese
Fresh dill
1 bag of baby spinach
1 orange sliced into thin segments.
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
2 x packets of Regal King Salmon Lemon & Herb Wood Roasted Salmon Portion

For the dressing

2 tablespoons raspberry balsamic vinegar
Juice from one large orange
Juice from one lemon
1 teaspoon honey
2 tablespoons oil

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.  Peel the beetroot and kumara then slice into evenly sized thin slices.  Grease oven trays with olive oil, then lay out the vegetables and drizzle with olive oil.  Season with salt and pepper.   Bake for 20-30 minutes or until the vegetables are cooked through and the kumara is lightly golden.

On each dinner plate, add a couple of handfuls of baby spinach.  Layer over the roast vegetables and orange slices.  Sprinkle over the feta.  Cut the salmon into chunks and spread evenly across the four plates.

To make the dressing, add all the ingredients in a small bowl and mix well.  Add as desired just before eating.


Thanks to Regal Salmon, I’ve got two salmon hampers to giveaway valued at $50 each!   If you’d like to win one of these, simply comment below with your favourite way to eat salmon.

Competition will be drawn December 19th and winner notified via email as well as announced on the blog.

Congratulations to Kate McCormick and Julie Marsh! You are the lucky winners. Check your emails 🙂

This post was made possible thanks to Regal Salmon




Delicious new ways to enjoy eggs for breakfast

I’ve always been a breakfast lover and a perfect way to create a filling, nourishing breakfast is to have eggs.  Since being pregnant, eggs are something I’ve been eating more often as they’re not only a good source of protein, but they’re really nutrient dense too.

Eggs are one of the few food sources that contain vitamin D. We make the majority of vitamin D when the sun hits our skin, but because we have our skin covered in winter and there is less sun, vitamin D levels drop. So including more food sources is especially useful in winter.  Eggs also contain 10 other vitamins and minerals plus the antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin which promote good eye health.

Whilst people used to avoid eggs because of their cholesterol, evidence now suggests there’s no need to.  Eggs can be eaten regularly as a low cost, nutrient rich wholefood protein source. Yah!

Eggs for breakfast can be more than poached or scrambled too. And to get you inspired with some new ideas, here’s three egg recipes I’ve been enjoying lately for breakfast – from the super quick, to the prep in advance. There’s even a sweet option too.



2 minute microwave pesto eggs

Eggs for breakfast don’t have to take a lot of time.  This is my favourite way to have a quick egg based breakfast (especially during the week before I head off for a busy day of work!) – plus it’s a good way to get an extra serve of vegetables into your day.


2 eggs
Optional – 1 tablespoon of chopped fresh herbs (eg parsley, basil)
1-2 teaspoons pesto
Juice from ½ lemon
¼ avocado, sliced
2 handfuls baby spinach
Wholemeal sourdough bread (or whatever bread you fancy)
Salt and pepper to season


Simply crack 2 eggs into a ramekin, mix well with a fork, season with pepper, add the herbs if using and microwave for 1 ½ minutes, stirring half way.  Cover it well with  paper towel as the egg can ‘pop’ and make a mess!  Or if it pops when you take it out it could hit you and hurt!

Place a handful of baby spinach on a slice of toasted bread, top with the cooked egg and sliced avocado.  In a small dish, mix the pesto and lemon juice and drizzle over the egg.

Season with salt and pepper and enjoy for a super quick, protein packed breakfast that also gives you a serve of vegetables too.


Kumara hash egg muffins

These kumara hash egg muffins are kind of like a cooked breakfast in one.  These ‘muffins’ have a kumara hash bottom, a layer of spinach, mushroom and cheese and are then topped with an egg.  A couple of these provide a nourishing breakfast you can eat on the run.

Ingredients (makes 6 texas size muffins)

1 large kumara, peeled and grated
1 tsp powdered garlic
½ cup grated cheese
3 large handfuls of baby spinach, washed
6 large free range eggs
6 mushrooms, chopped
1 tablespoon pesto

Optional: Smoked salmon slices, or bacon



Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius.

Place the grated kumara in a bowl and season with a little salt.  Mix and leave for a couple of minutes.  With clean hands, take handfuls of the kumara and squeeze out extra fluid. Place squeezed kumara back in the bowl and sprinkle over the garlic powder and season with cracked pepper.

Line texas muffin tins with baking paper, or grease well.  Press the kumara evenly into the bottom of the muffin tins.    Bake for 12 minutes.
While the kumara is cooking, heat a fry pan over a medium heat.  Add the chopped mushrooms and pesto, stirring often until cooked (around 4-5 minutes).  Set aside in a small bowl.  Add the baby spinach and heat through until wilted.  Squeeze out excess moisture – otherwise it will make the kumara soggy.

Grate the cheese.  When the kumara has finished cooking, sprinkle half of the grated cheese evenly over the kumara bases.  Add the mushrooms and spinach, then top with remaining cheese.  If using smoked salmon or bacon, you could add these now.  Cook the bacon before using so it’s crispy .

Crack an egg on top each of the bases.  Lightly prick the yolk with a skewer.

Bake for 15 minutes, or until the egg is cooked.



Chocolate banana & hazelnut omelette

Sometimes I like my eggs on the sweeter side, and this is a delicious way to have them.

Serves 1

2 large size free range eggs
1 tablespoon milk
1 tablespoon cocoa
1 teaspoon runny honey
1 ½ bananas, cut in half
1 small handful of hazelnuts, cut in half
3 tablespoons Greek yoghurt



In a bowl, beat the eggs, milk, cocoa and honey together until well combined.  Mash half the banana and add to the egg mixture and mix well.

Grease a non stick fry pan and heat over a medium heat.  Pour over the egg mixture and heat until cooked.

While the omelette is cooking, finely slice the other banana.  Once cooked place half of this banana over top of the egg on top of one half of the omelette and spread over a couple of tablespoons of yoghurt.  Flip in half and place on your plate.  Top with extra yoghurt, the remaining banana, hazelnuts and dust with a little cocoa.

For more delicious recipes, how to videos, health and nutritional information you can check out this website.

This post was made possible thanks to Eggs Inc


So you can head to the supermarket and pick up some goodies to create your own favourite eggy breakfast, I’ve got a $50 supermarket voucher to give away.  To be in the draw, simply comment below with what recipe you’d try or your favourite way to eat eggs.  Don’t forget to check out Eggs Inc for more recipe inspiration too.

CONGRATULATIONS Heidi! I’ve emailed you regarding your prize. Thanks everyone for entering.

Competition closes September 24th 27th 2016.  Open to NZ residents only.







Slow cooker lamb shanks

For a winter’s meal there’s nothing like a tender, melt in your mouth meal of slow cooker lamb shanks.

In the winter I love nothing more than opening the door to the house to the smell of a delicious meal cooking.  It’s a comforting smell that reminds me of mum’s home cooking but it’s also such a great feeling to know that dinner is almost ready and there’s not much to do!

I’m currently in love with my slow cooker and I have been using it more lately both because it’s colder but also for convenience and time saving reasons.  Part of my plan over the next 6 months is to work on being more organised and to save time when I can (well really it’s a life long plan!!).   I’m working quite long hours at the moment with a few different things on the go, so I need to be organised and plan my meals.  It’s so easy to just chuck everything in in the morning and come home to dinner being almost prepared.

Slow cooker lamb shanks are kind of like mini lamb roasts that are pretty good value for money and delicious at the same time.  I find one shank is too much for me, so there are always left overs for the next day which is a bonus.

Nutritionally, lamb is a good source of iron, protein, B group vitamins and zinc so it’s nutrient dense and filling.

I served this with kumara and potato mash as well as steamed vegetables for a classic meat and “three vegetable” hearty meal.

Slow cooker lamb shanks

2 lamb shanks, trimmed
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tin tomatoes
2 cups reduced salt beef stock
1 cup vegetable stock
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
6 cloves garlic
1 large brown onion
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon chopped rosemary leaves

Heat the olive oil in a pan over a medium heat. Add the lamb shanks and brown all over.  This helps enhance the flavour.

Add the tomatoes, stock, tomato paste and vinegar to the slow cooker.  Peel and finely chop the garlic cloves and onion.  Add these to the slow cooker and sprinkle over the herbs.  Give it a gentle mix.  Add the lamb shanks and pop the lid on the slow cooker.  Turn to low and cook for 8 hours.

To make a gravy for the slow cooker lamb shanks, spoon out a cup of the liquid and sieve into a small glass bowl.  Add a couple of ice cubes and stir well to help it cool down.  Then pop it in the freezer for around 15 minutes.  Take out and scoop of the layer of fat from the top.  In my opinion, the gravy tastes much better without this!  Mix 1/2 a tablespoon of cornflour with a small amount of water to make a paste and add to the liquid.  Microwave for 2-3 minutes, stir, then microwave again until it thickens. You may need to add a little more cornflour.   Serve the lamb shanks with gravy and vegetables of your choice.  I also like to spoon over a little of the tomato and onion mixture on top too.

I’m sure these slow cooker lamb shanks will be a hit in your house for a hearty, nourishing winter meal.

What are your favourite slow cooker recipes and would you like me to share some more of my favourites?

Chocolate Fudge Protein Bars

I’ve been thinking of creating a home made protein bar for quite a while.  My go to snacks are usually nuts, yoghurt + berries or fruit, but every now and then I feel like something a little different. Protein bars are not something I would normally buy as they’re often full of sweeteners that upset my stomach and some of the better brands tend to be quite expensive.

I had a big tub of Clean Lean Protein in the pantry that I needed to use up so I decided to create a DIY protein bar and it turned out quite delicious. They have a fudgey type texture and chunks of chocolate which always make things taste even better!  These protein bars contain 9.5g of protein, as well as providing some healthy fats.  This combination make them a filling snack that is perfect for those on the go times when you want something to keep you satisfied that’s tasty too.

Here’s how to make the chocolate fudge protein bars.


1 cup sunflower seeds (you could also use cashews)
6.5 scoops chocolate flavoured Clean Lean Protein
1/2 cup coconut
2 tablespoons cocoa
1/4 cup almond slithers
80g dark chocolate, chopped into chunks + 20g (1 row) extra
3 teaspoons honey (or use stevia if you want to lower sugar)
1 dessertspoon peanut butter
2 tablespoons water

Place the sunflower seeds in a food processor and blend for 4-8 minutes, pausing and scraping down the sides with a spatula.   You want them to come together into a butter type consistency.

Next, add the protein powder, coconut, cocoa, honey, peanut butter and water. Blend again until the mixture comes together when pinched.  If need be add a little more water. Add the chocolate chunks and gently mix in.

Tip the mixture into a small dish (approx cm x cm) and press down very firmly with clean fingers or the back of a spoon.

Melt the remaining chocolate and drizzle over the top.

Place in the freezer for 1 hour, then slice into 10 bars.

Store in the fridge.

Are you a protein bar fan?


Chocolate Oat and Almond Bliss Balls

Often in the weekend I’ll make a batch of bliss balls to have over the next week or so for a healthier sweet treat.  This recipe for chocolate oat and almond bliss balls is one of my older recipes I’ve been using again.  Oats, almonds, pumpkin seeds, dates and chocolate combine to make a yummy healthier sweet treat.  This is a super simple recipe too, just chuck it all in the food processor and blend away.  Quick, easy and delicious.

Chocolate Oat and Almond Bliss Balls

Makes 22 balls


1/2 cup of dates + boiling water
1 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup almonds
1/3 cup pumpkin seeds (or sunflower seeds)
1/4 cup coconut
1 tablespoon cocoa
6 pieces of dark chocolate
1 teaspoon of vanilla essence
1 teaspoon honey
2 teaspoons coconut oil, melted

Soak the dates in boiling water for 15 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Blend the almonds in a food processor until they are cut up into small pieces. Add the remaining ingredients, including the dates. Pulse the ingredients until combined. You may need to stop the food processor and push the ingredients down from the sides with a spatula.

Squeeze a spoonful of ingredients together in your hand and push firmly into a ball shape. You can either roll these in extra coconut or leave as is.

Store in the fridge and enjoy for a delicious, tasty snack.

Creamy strawberry cashew smoothie


I’m loving Spring – blossom, gorgeous flowers, and more sunshine!   Seeing the sun again put me in the mood for refreshing, berry smoothies and I came up with this delicious creamy berry cashew smoothie.

Smoothies can sometimes lack a little substance and leave you feeling hungry soon afterwards, but this smoothie is a good mix of macronutrients and substantial enough as a meal.  Cashew nuts provide some healthy fats, a little fibre and protein. Chia seeds are a good source of fibre too which will help keep you feeling full. The milk and yoghurt provide calcium and protein (and calcium!) and the fruit provides carbohydrates.

I used frozen strawberries for this smoothie, but it would also be yummy with raspberries.

I enjoyed this for a weekend lunch sitting in the sun.  Bliss!

Ingredients for one creamy strawberry cashew smoothie:

1 cup frozen strawberries
1 small banana
30g raw cashew nuts (small handful)
1/2 cup natural unsweetened yoghurt
1/2 cup milk of choice
1 tablespoon chia seeds

Blend together until smooth and creamy.


Good Buzz Kombucha Product Review

A couple of weeks ago I received a box full of Good Buzz Kombucha which was pretty exciting!  I’ve tried kombucha once before and I did quite enjoy it, so I was keen to give this product a test.

What is kombucha?

Kombucha is a fermented tea drink, made with tea, sugar, bacteria and yeast. It originates from Asia, and because it undergoes bacterial fermentation it is a good source of probiotics.  Probiotics are very important for gut health and your immune system, and consuming probiotics regularly is necessary to maintain this.


The Good Buzz Brewing company only use quality ingredients to produce their kombucha.  Green Tea, when used, is certified organic. They use Fairtrade Organic sugar and artesian water from Te Puna Wai Ora (Spring of Life) under the Hutt Valley in Wellington.

Sugar content:
Because this is a fermented product, the sugar content is much lower than other sugar sweetened drinks as the bacteria/yeast consume it. The bacterium, mostly lactobacilli, preserves the brew and will continue to eat the sugars in the bottle. Cold slows this process down.

It contains glucose and fructose which averages about 3.5% or 11g per bottle. Some varieties are slightly higher, some are slightly less.


This product was refreshing and easy to drink.  It has a unique flavour that’s almost like cider, but not as strong or sweet.  It has a very light fizz to it.   My favourite flavours were jade dew, which was very fresh and also feijoa, as I do love feijoas!  On a hot day after work, it was really enjoyable.

The product has floaty bits, but don’t let this put you off.  These are the live bacterial cultures. It’s a small, slightly rubbery disc at the top of the bottle, which does look similar to a skinless grape. This is totally harmless, and it’s a true sign that the drink is in fact ‘living’ and probiotic.


There are 5 flavours available:

Green tea
Jade Dew
Lemon and ginger

My verdict: Good Buzz Brewing Company Kombucha is a tasty sweet drink that has the benefit of containing live probiotic cultures.  It’s lower in sugar than many sweetened drinks.  Fermented foods are of importance to our diet, so I’d use this product in conjunction with other fermented foods, such as yoghurt is more nutrient dense than kombucha.  This is  a nice treat with the benefit of being a source of probiotics.

Watermelon smoothie

When it’s hot, there is nothing more refreshing than watermelon. And it’s no wonder, because it’s 92% water.  Watermelon is a good source of vitamins A and C and is also a source of vitamin B6. It’s a sweet, healthy and delicious way to hydrate.  Watermelon also makes a fabulous smoothie and I recently created this version as a yummy, refreshing snack. It’s simple to make, with a blend of fruits and some cucumber which adds to the refreshing flavour, plus provides a bit of a vegetable boost to your day.  The cucumber flavour isn’t overpowering but it combines really well with the sweetness and flavour of the watermelon.

This smoothie is the perfect way to boost your fruit and vege intake too!

Here’s how to make the watermelon smoothie


2 cups diced watermelon
1/2 cup frozen raspberries
1/4 of a cucumber, peeled and cut into cubes.
Juice of 1 lime
1/2 cup of water, or you can also use coconut water
2 teaspoons chia seeds

Place all the ingredients in a blender and enjoy as a refreshing drink.  This smoothie isn’t filling enough for a meal, but would be a good snack, or accompaniment to a meal.




Chocolate Beetroot Cake

A couple of months back I planted some baby beetroot which soon became regular sized beetroot. After lots of raw beetroot salad and roasted beetroot, I decided to give chocolate beetroot cake a go.  I slightly modified Jamie Oliver’s recipe for chocolate beetroot cake and boy is it a great recipe.  I wasn’t expecting it to be as delicious as it was.  It contains no oils or butter, and is made with almond flour.  It’s soft, rich,moist and almost brownie like.  A perfect slightly healthier sweet treat.

Chocolate Beetroot Cake Ingredients:

Olive oil, for greasing
Flour, for dusting tin (use gluten free to keep cake 100% gluten free)
250g  70% cacao chocolate
250g raw beetroot, grated (this was one large beetroot)
4 large free range eggs
120g coconut sugar
120g finely ground almonds
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2tablespoons good quality cocoa
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C on fan bake.

2. Lightly grease the bottom and sides of a 20cm spring form cake tin with olive oil.

3. Line the bottom of the tin with a circle of greaseproof paper cut roughly the same size as the bottom of the tin.

4. Dust the sides of the tin lightly with flour, then tap the tin to get rid of any extra, and tip out.

5. Break up the chocolate into pieces and place in a glass microwavable bowl.

6. Microwave for 45 seconds. Stir well and return to the microwave for a further 30 seconds. Stir again well. If it’s not melted completely, return for another 30 seconds.

8. Peel the beetroot, then grate nad place the grated beetroot in a large mixing bowl.

9. Separate the eggs, placing the whites into a seperate large mixing bowl and adding the yolks to the beetroot.

11. Into the bowl of grated beetroot, add the coconut sugar, almonds, baking powder, cocoa powder and melted chocolate and mix together well.

12. Now for the egg whites. Using an electric beater, whisk the eggs until they form stiff peaks.

13. Use a spatula to fold a quarter of the egg whites into the beetroot mixture to loosen it up. Once combined, gently fold in the rest being careful not to over mix. The egg whites help make the cake light and help it rise. If you over mix, it will stop this from happening.

14. Add the mixture to the prepared cake tin and spread out evenly using a spatula.

15. Bake in the hot oven for around 45-50 minutes, or until risen and cooked through. To check if it’s cooked, put a skewer in the middle of the cake. If it comes out clean, then the cake is done.

Dust with a little icing sugar and serve with Greek yoghurt and berries for a yummy sweet treat.

Enjoy your chocolate beetroot cake.