05 January 2014

The first dinner of 2014

Happy New Year!

“Tomorrow, is the first blank page of a 365 page book. Write a good one.” 
Brad Paisley

Well I certainly hope to get back in to writing some blog posts! I spent New Year over here

It was idyllic, relaxing, rejuvenating; the perfect way to head in to a new year.  Over here was Great Barrier Island, out in the Hauraki Gulf. Not so far away but really away from it all, almost off the grid...limited cell phone coverage, no supermarkets, no 24 hour dairies or convenience stores, no ATMs, no public transport.  There are single lane very windy roads with no road markings, many unsealed with no streetlights* & no footpaths..but that is all OK life is at a slower pace, there is no rush hour & cars, people, & bicycles are all happy to share.  Now that couldn’t be more different to Auckland!!

*Take a torch!

For the first dinner of 2014 it was butterfly leg of lamb, garlic roast potatoes, roast peppers & zucchini & greens...asparagus, broad beans & some local green beans picked up at the General Store*

*They may not have supermarkets but the Stonewall General Store at Tryphena is stocked with everything you could possibly need.  A huge range of organics, gluten free, wine, spirits; you name it they had it.

There’s no real recipe as such, it was what we had & what we picked up at the local store. But here’s a rough guide.

Butterflied Leg of Lamb, Garlic Roasted Potatoes, Roast Veg & Greens

Pre heat oven to 180C/350F

For the potatoes & roasted veg
Toss the potatoes in olive oil & some roughly chopped garlic, season with salt & pepper & place in the oven. After 30 minutes add some roughly sliced peppers & zucchini & cook for a further 15-20 minutes until all the veg are roasted.  

For the lamb
Sear the lamb stove top & then place in the oven to roast at 180C/350F. Timing will all depend on the size of the leg of lamb & how you like your lamb cooked. This one was a little organic free range Harmony one so it was about 12 minutes in the oven & then rested for another 10 minutes.

For the greens
While the lamb is resting gently boil the beans, asparagus & broad beans in some salted water for just a few minutes.  Drain, pod the beans & serve.

And that my friends it it.

I’ll leave you with this quote that I found...I like it.

“I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes. 

Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You're doing things you've never done before, and more importantly, you're Doing Something.

So that's my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody's ever made before. Don't freeze, don't stop, don't worry that it isn't good enough, or it isn't perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life.

Whatever it is you're scared of doing, Do it.

Make your mistakes, next year and forever.” 

Neil Gaiman



  1. What beautiful photos Mairi! I love great barrier and miss being on "Island time"!

    1. Thanks Lucy…it was just stunning…Oh & yes so missing island time!

  2. Looks gorgeous Mairi - perfect for some time out.


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