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This recipe is my version of the perfect pie which is delicious with Waitaki’s award winning champagne ham.

Serves 8-10

250-300g ham of the bone, sliced


Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 Tbsp Dijon or grain mustard

¼ cup crème fraiche

1 Tbsp oil

1 Tbsp butter

2 leeks, finely sliced

¼ tsp fresh tarragon leaves, finely chopped (optional)

2 tablespoons finely chopped Parsley

150 g gruyere cheese, sliced thinly

Freshly ground Pepper

Olive oil Pastry

200 g Plain Flour

½ teaspoon Salt

1.5 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil

½ cup cold Water

¼ tsp sea salt flakes for top of pie


Begin by making the pastry, whiz flour and salt in a food processor. Drizzle in oil and then water.

Process for about 1 minute until mixture forms a ball.

Transfer to a floured work surface and knead for 2-3 minutes until supple and smooth.

Put into a bowl, cover with a clean cloth and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

Add the butter and oil to a medium fry pan and add the leeks and tarragon (if using) and cook gently without colouring for 5 minutes, season lightly with salt and cracked pepper.  Cool, set aside.

Mix the crème fraiche with the mustard and set aside.

Preheat the oven to 200C


To Assemble:

Divide the pastry into two and roll one round of pastry about 25cm diameter (size of large dinner plate). Roll second half so that it is a little larger in size about 20cm diameter (this is the top).

Lightly oil a large baking sheet and place the smaller of the two rounds on the tray.  Spread the crème fraiche mixture over the base allowing 2 cm from the edge.  Scatter over the cooked leeks.

Place the sliced ham over the leeks and finally add the gruyere cheese.

Place the second round over the pie and allow the pastry to fall over the mixture.

Seal edges, then fold extra pastry from base to over sealed edges and press together.

Pierce top here and there with a fork and drizzle with 1 tablespoon oil.

Scatter with the sea salt and bake in preheat oven for 30-40 mins or until golden and pastry is cooked.

Remove from oven and cool for at least 10 minutes before cutting.




Serves 4

1 Tbsp fresh rosemary leaves, chopped finely

1 tsp cracked black pepper

450 g venison fillet

1 Tbsp butter

1 Tbps oil

250 g silver beet or baby spinach, washed and drained well

Handful flat leaf parsley, leaves only

1 large beetroot, boiled or roasted, peeled and diced

1 red onion, sliced thinly

2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar

Sea salt flakes and cracked black pepper


Begin by separating the leaves from the stalks from the silver beet.

Bring a medium sized pot with salted water to the boil.  When boiling add the silver beet stalks and cook for 2 minutes add the leaves and cook for 1 minute further, drain immediately and cool.

Rub all the chopped rosemary over the venison fillet with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Place butter and oil in a frying pan over high heat, add the venison and sear for about 4-5 minutes each side. Remove from heat and cover with foil, rest for 5 minutes.

In a bowl add the silver beet leaves and stalks, beetroot, onion and season lightly with salt and cracked pepper, drizzle over a little dressing and toss lightly to combine.

Place onto a warm plate, and slice the venison thinly across the fillet. Place onto the warmed silver beet salad and mix a teaspoon or two of Bouche’s Cherry Pinot sauce with two tablespoons of the balsamic dressing, mix well and drizzle over venison and serve immediately.



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Serves 4-6

600-800g minced beef

salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 medium onions, diced

5 garlic cloves, halved

3 tinned chipotle peppers in adobo, chopped (if possible) or 1 Tbsp good quality smoked paprika and 1 -2 tsp chilli powder

1 jalapeno, chopped (or green hot chilli) jar variety will work also

1 425g can whole tomatoes

2 Tbsp ground coriander

1 Tbsp ground cumin

1 Tbsp sweet paprika

1 Tbsp dried oregano

1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

1 tsp sugar

2x 425g tins kidney beans, drained and rinsed

1 – 2 Tbsp grated unsweetened chocolate

3 cups grated Cheddar, for serving

12- crisp lettuce leaves

Sour cream (optional)


Heat a large pot to hot and add the oil, add the minced beef breaking it up as you go.  Allow to colour up and continue to mix it so that the minced meat breaks up.  Add the onions, garlic, spices, chipotles, and jalapeno (if using). Crush the tomatoes and add to the pot along with the tomato paste. Simmer until the meat is tender and the flavour has deepened, about 30 minutes. As it cooks down, add more water if necessary.

Add the next layer of flavour by stirring in the beans. Season with salt and pepper and simmer for another 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Partially cover the pot so the steam does not get trapped under the lid and drip down into the chili making it watery. In the last 5 minutes of cooking, stir in the grated chocolate.

Garnish each serving with grated Cheddar, crisp lettuce leaves and generous blob of sour cream.  You can certainly add tortillas or tacos if desired.


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Basecamps salami are best eaten natural, but when the weather still has that nip in the air you want a little more comfort in your diet and this is where this dish comes in.

This dish can double as a thick hearty soup or stew.  The combination of simple yet outstanding ingredients make this dish truly memorable.

Serves 6-8

2 Tbsp olive oil

1 onion, sliced thinly

200-300g salami (basecamp red wine and cracked pepper smoked venison salami)

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 ½ cups white wine

1 425g can of white beans (cannellini or haricot), drained

2 liters vegetable or chicken stock

1 lite water (approx.)

1 tsp salt, more to taste

300-500g savoy cabbage, quartered, then sliced into 4mm thick slices

2 bay leaves

To serve

1 cup chopped parsley, loosely packed

½ cup, freshly grated Parmesan cheese


Heat the olive oil on medium-high heat in a large thick-bottomed pot. Add the salami, cutting it up into pieces as you put it into the pot in a single layer. When the salami has nicely browned, remove it with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Add the onion and sauté for 3-4 minutes, stirring often. Add the garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes.

Add the white wine and the beans and bring to a rolling boil. Reduce to a simmer. Cover and cook for 10 minutes. If you want, for a thicker base, use an blender or potato masher to blend some (or all) of the beans and onions.

Add the water, stock, salt, cabbage, bay leaves and browned salami. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer. Cover and simmer for 10 minutes, then uncover and continue cooking until the cabbage is tender, about another 10-20 minutes.

To serve, sprinkle on chopped parsley and grated cheese.



A potjie is a social activity, with guests generally engaging in fireside chitchat while the potjie cooks, typically three to six hours.

Thanks to Paul from Judge Rock and his trusty potjie pot I will be doing our version of a market boil up with thanks to Havoc Porks bones, sausages and a touch of pancetta. 

When the meat is lightly browned, vegetables like potatoes are added, along with whatever spices are needed. Water or other liquids may or may not then be added, depending on the views of the potjie chef. The lid is then closed and the contents left to simmer slowly without stirring. This distinguishes a potjiekos from a stew that is stirred. The aim is that the flavours of the different ingredients mix as little as possible. Although some chefs may permit stirring from time to time (which is highly frowned upon), it does create a stew where all the ingredients tend to taste similar. Little sauce or water is used, so that cooking is by steam and not boiling in a sauce like a stew; thus the heat must be very low and constant.



serves 4-8

2 Tbsp oil

Pork, lamb or beef

Southern sausage or something similar

Smoked bacon or ham hock

1 onion, roughly chopped

4-8 cloves garlic

2 sticks celery, roughly chopped

2 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped

4 potatoes (waxy), cut into large chunks

1 bottle red wine

1 bay leaf, sprig rosemary or thyme

Salt and plenty freshly ground pepper

Handful parsley, roughly chopped


Place a large heavy based pot on the heat and add the oil add the bones and sausage and brown all over.  Add the vegetable except the potato and get them mixed through all the oil and meat juices. Add the wine and stir to get any bits of the bottom of the pot, add the bacon or hock if using along with the herbs and season lightly.  Put the lid on, reduce the heat and gently simmer for 2 hours.  Add the potatoes and cook for further 30 minutes or until just tender. Adjust seasoning and finish with the parsley and enjoy.



Beef cheeks are a cut of meat that I am always on the lookout for and it just happens that Leckies Butcher has a secret stash!  They need moisture when cooked and long and slow.  The meat should be meltingly tender when consumed!

Serves 8

2 beef cheeks

4 Tbsp olive oil

1 carrot, peeled and roughly chopped

1 onion, diced

1/2 bulb of garlic, cut across the middle

1 stick celery, chopped

1 leek, chopped

4 sprigs thyme

12 black peppercorns

2 Tbsp tomato purée

1 bottles red wine

1 litres chicken stock

1 splash balsamic vinegar

1 splash Worcestershire sauce


Preheat oven 150C

Trim the beef cheeks and remove as much sinew as possible. Cut each cheek in half. Season well with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a heavy-based pan and brown the cheeks on all sides. Remove and set aside.

Add the vegetables, garlic and a little extra oil if necessary. Stir around until they turn golden. Add the thyme and peppercorns and mix everything together. When all the vegetables are golden, add the tomato paste and cook for 2 minutes.

Pour in the red wine and stir, scraping up all the sticky bits from the bottom of the pan, then cook until the liquid is reduced and you have a sticky sauce – about 12-14 minutes.

Put the beef cheeks back in the pan and cover with the chicken stock. Bring to the boil, skim the surface and cover with a circle of greaseproof paper. Place in the oven and braise the beef in the oven at 150C for 2 hours 30 minutes or until tender.

Once the cheeks are cooked add a splash each of balsamic vinegar and Worcestershire sauce. Carve the cheeks into smaller portions if necessary.

These are great served with soft parmesan polenta with the juice poured over the top.





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The combination of sweet baked apple, comforting potato and moreish black pudding makes this one of my all-time favourites!

Serves 6

1 leek, washed and sliced thinly

4 Tbsp crème fraiche

1 Tbsp Dijon mustard

3 Tbsp olive oil, plus extra for drizzling

4 waxy potatoes, Nadine, van rosa

2 sweet apples, pacific beauty

400g black pudding

350g puff pastry dough, thawed if frozen but still cold

Flour for dusting

100g gruyere cheese, grated


Cook the potatoes in lightly salted water for 15-20 minutes, or until tender.  Drain well, then cut into thin rounds.

Add a knob of butter to a medium sized fry pan and add the leeks and a sprinkle of salt, cook until soft and tender (5 minutes). Remove from the pan and set aside.

Add another knob of butter and allow to go frothy add the apple slices and cook until they just begin to colour. Remove from the heat.

Mix together the crème fraiche and mustard.

Preheat the oven to 180C

Roll out the puff pastry on a lightly floured surface to your desired round, I rolled mine to a 25cm round and place on a baking sheet. Spread about 2 tablespoons of the crème fraiche mixture evenly over the dough. Sprinkle with the leeks and half the cheese.  Then arrange alternate layers of black pudding, potato and apple on top.  Cover with remaining cheese, sprinkle of salt and grind or two of pepper.

Bake for 20 minutes or until golden and the base is crisp.

If need be drizzle with a little more oil and serve immediately.


pork ribs

pork ribs

I am always on look out for a good recipe for bones or as my children call them sticky bones! I found this one and have adapated it for the children.  If you have the time put the rub on the raw bones and let sit for at least 2-6 hours and bake covered for about 2 hours on 150C or otherwise do my faster version below.

Serve 4

1.5 -2kg (At least four ribs each)


1 cup packed brown sugar

2 Tbsp salt

2 tsp sweet smoked paprika

2 tsp cayenne pepper (reduce if using for children)

2 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp ground allspice

¼ tsp chilli flakes (omit if for children)


Place the bones into a large pot suitable to hold the bones, cover with cold water and bring to the boil.  Cook for 10 minutes and then drain and cool.

Meanwhile combine all of the rub ingredients in a medium bowl.

Line a baking tray with greaseproof paper or tin foil (it will make it a lot easier to clean).

Rub the sparefub on all sides with the spice rub.  Put on the baking sheet and warp in cling film.  Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or ideally as long as possible.

Preheat either your BBQ or grill on your oven to medium- hot as you are wanting to get that wonderful grilled, smoky caramelized look and taste.  Place the ribs onto or under the hottest part of the grill and cook for 2 minutes, turn the ribs cook for another 2 minutes.

Now turn the oven to 190C on bake for at least 30 minutes to 1 hour, you want the bones to be tender almost to the point where the meat is about to fall from the bones.

Serve and enjoy!



4 pork ribeye steaks
1 tsp salt
2 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil 4 plump garlic cloves, crushed and peeled
½ cup flour, for dredging, plus more as needed
1 large lemon, sliced in thin rounds 1 whole green chilli, pricked lightly with fork
3 Tbsp capers, drained
¾ cup white wine
1 Tbsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed
2 Tbsp fresh Italian parsley, chopped


You will need a heavy-bottomed fry pan about 20cm round.

Lightly salt the steaks on both sides, using 1/2 teaspoon salt in all.

Put the butter and olive oil in the pan (this will give it a wonderful flavour and colour), and set it over medium-low heat. When the butter begins to bubble, scatter in the garlic; let it heat and gently sizzle. Meanwhile, spread the flour on a plate or tray, and dredge the chops on all sides. Shake off excess flour, and lay the chops in the skillet in one layer.

Scatter the lemon slices on top of the chops, and drop the whole chilli. Cook the chops slowly, keeping them at a gentle sizzle, turning and moving them in the pan about every 5 minutes, as they take on colour gradually and evenly.

After 5-8 minutes or so, when the pork is lightly browned and caramelized on both sides, scatter in the capers, shake the pan to drop them onto the bottom and turn up the heat to medium-high. When the capers are sizzling, push the chops aside, and pour the wine and lemon juice into the clear hot spot. Bring to a boil, and shake the pan so the wine flows around all the chops. Adjust the heat to keep the pan juices bubbling, steadily reducing and thickening. Turn the chops occasionally, so both sides are moistened and evenly cooked.

After about 3-5 minutes of reducing the liquid, when the juices are syrupy and glaze the chops, remove the pan from the heat. Sprinkle the chopped parsley all over, and give the chops a final turn in the pan. Serve right away, drizzling a bit of the remaining pan sauce over each chop.



serves 4

2 Tbsp oil for cooking

4 pork and fennel sausages

1 onion, sliced thinly

6 fresh tomatoes

4-6 zucchinis

2 cloves garlic, sliced thinly

salt and freshly ground pepper

drizzle of fresh basil pesto or 4 fresh basil leaves, torn

extra virgin olive oil

MethodTo begin you need to peel the tomatoes and i do this by removing the eye (the green core) with a small sharp knife and cut a small cross lightly through the skin on the other end, repeat with all the tomatoes. Place them in a heat proof bowl and pour over boiling water (from the kettle) and let the tomatoes sit for a couple of minutes or until you see the skin crack. Remove immediatley from the water and peel off the tomato skin, cut the tomatoes into rough chunks and set aside.

Place large heavy based fry pan onto a moderate heat and add the oil. Add the pork and fennel sausage meat by holding the sausage and squeezing out the flesh so that it looks like little meat balls, add directly to the pan and cook until it begins to colour, add the onions and cook for a further 3-5 minutes or until the onions are soft and sweet. Add the garlic and allow this to cook for a few minutes more so that it removes a little of the punchy flavour. Add the zucchinis and toss in the oil so that it coats and soaks up the flavours. Add the roughly chopped tomatoes, sprinkle with a little salt and pepper and allow to cook for a further 5 minutes or until the zucchini starts to soften and the tomatoes go mushy and juicy, add basil leaves if using and stir lightly. Serve with good quality grilled bread and drizzle with fresh basil pesto and good quality extra virgin olive oil (Dumford Grove).