Hawke’s Bay Farmers Market – A Foodie Paradise

Hawkes Bay Farmers Market Our recent summer holiday saw us doing a huge roadie around parts of the North Island (i.e. Rotorua-Masterton-Wellington-Napier-Mahia-Cape Runaway-Rotorua-Napier-Rotorua. I lost track of how many kilometres we travelled. At last count it was over 2000km in 10 days. It’s been great from the perspective of the stunning scenery, tip top weather and catching up with friends, some of whom we haven’t seen in a long time. It’s ended up being a summer holiday I’ll remember for crayfish, gourmet salads, fantastic coffee, craft beer, lots of giggles and good books. I read for a large chunk of the roadie.  I am extremely grateful to be able to read in the car: No travel sickness has ever been experienced by this wanderluster!

Anyway, last weekend, on our last few days of holiday we ended up in my hometown of Napier and we boosted it to the Hawke’s Bay Farmers Market. Wow.  So wow in fact, I took a heap of photos on my trusty Samsung S7 to share with you. Out of all of the things we saw and did on holiday, this was one of the best experiences. And I’ve been to this market plenty of times.  (more…)

Carrot Salad with Toasted Coconut and Cashew

carrot salad with toasted coconut and cashew

This carrot salad with toasted coconut and cashew was inspired by a recipe on the back of a carrot recipe! Needless to say the recipe got the “Lou Once-over” and this was the result. Yum, nailed it.  My  buddy Emma has road-tested it for me and declared it delicious.

I made this recipe in Wellington, on trip to Ohariu Valley to visit my hubby’s family. We had a good old-fashioned belated Christmas get-together and it was so much fun. This zingy carrot salad was served alongside Aunty Janet’s now famous roast turkey: Quite possibly the best turkey I’ve ever had (I want to say it was super moist, but so many people seem to have an allergic reaction to that ‘m’ word.. So I’ll put the word in brackets).  Back to the salad, this would be a sensational addition to any BBQ. You could serve it hot – we had ours cold and it was perfection.

As you know, I like recipes that can be easily modified with different ingredients. This recipe is no exception. I reckon replacing the carrot with orange kumara would be delicious. Emma and I both agree that chopped dates or cranberries would also be tip-top.  

Speaking of carrot salad recipes, have you tried this recipe for crunchy carrot, date and almond salad? This is another goodie!

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World Organics – Lou’s Store is LIVE!

World Organics…We are good to go!   Lou’s World Organics site is live! Click here.

In case you missed the back story and are wondering, “what’s Lou on about now? What’s World Organics?”, I announced via a Facebook post (below) a few weeks ago about the decision to join the World Organics team.  This followed my review of a couple of World Organics products for my blog (I wrote this post). Long story short, trying out World Organics’ primer and concealer, coupled with a lot of research, lead me to make a big decision: To hop on board the World Organics train and become a consultant. Why? Because their philosophy resonates with me and, simply the makeup products I tried were that good!

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Ten Christmas Present Ideas That Won’t Break the Budget

Last year I did a blog post last Christmas with ideas of affordable pressie for beauty geeks and foodies. It was a hit, so, here’s 2016’s version.

Please note: I still reckon last year’s post had cracking recommendations so definitely check that out. Oh, I’m about to recommend a new twist on the Go Vino glasses.

Bonbon Vegan

bonbon vegan

I adore Bonbon Vegan. This Kiwi (Whakatane) beauty range is all 100% vegan, natural and unprocessed. Nice. (more…)

Skinfood Review

Skinfood sent me these goodies to review. I know. How lucky am I?

Skinfood Review

Backing up the bus a little, 2016 has been, unintentionally, the year of using mainly natural-based skincare. I’ve been unashamedly flirting with a bunch of different brands and I’m loving it. Why? I’m delighted with how my skin has responded and, big claim: I reckon the aging clock has slowed down. So, with this reasonably new-found love of natural-based skincare, when Skinfood asked me if I’d like to review some of their products, I replied with GUSTO. “Yes please!!!!!”  I said (bloody extroverts and their exclamation marks).

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Lou Loves – November Faves

It’s that time of the month – again! This time… I’ve mixed things up. 

This month’s beauty and foodie favourites is a video. Hell. I was so nervous when I pushed the publish button on this one… You have no idea. I had (and still have) mega butterflies in my tum.

Look, this video. It’s a bit amateur. I don’t know how to edit videos (so I didn’t). I’m quietly proud, that said, that I figured out how to do an intro cover title page thingymajig. Oh,  I need lighting, I need a microphone, I need a remote control doofer thingy so I can zoom in and out. But it’s a start!  Let me know what you think!  Thumbs up, or thumbs down? 

Note: I hope you don’t aren’t lying in bed next to someone reading this. You might accidentally press ‘play’ on the vid and wake them up. I get in trouble when I do that.

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Chocolate Caramel Slice Recipe

chocolate caramel slice recipe

Oh yes. My chocolate caramel slice recipe.

The Boy and I have been watching Zumbo’s Just Desserts on TV3 on Monday and Tuesday nights. Despite having an epic savoury tooth I can’t help but develop intense cravings whilst watching Zumbo’s for… SUGAR SUGAR SUGAR. Enough, I thought. Time to whip up something decadent to enhance our viewing pleasure.  Frankly, I don’t think you can go past chocolate caramel slice, for me this is the ultimate treat, the king of home-baking. 

Here’s my recipe, it’s a bit of a hodge-podge of various recipes I’ve tried over the years.  

Now, don’t tell anyone… Sometimes I make it with…. Double the caramel topping.  I know.  I’m such a porker.  But try it, don’t  just shake your head in disbelief at my porkiness. (more…)

Kick-Ass Kumara, Kransky and Spinach Salad

Kick Ass Kumara, Kransky and Spinach SaladThe inspiration for this kick-ass kumara, kransky and spinach salad didn’t arise from the creative depths of my foodie brain, I’d better fess up to that, right now!   Nope, inspo for this dish comes from Salute Cafe and Deli in Taupo.  We did a roadie down to Taupo from Rotorua recently and called in at Salute for lunch.  I ordered hock and eggs, which is Salute’s version of Eggs Bene. It was it good, the coffee was hot and decent, but I had total food envy as both my Mum and Marissa, my brother’s girlfriend ordered this (rather boring sounding) ‘Kumara Salad’. When it arrived, I begged them for a taste. It was so good I took a photo, made a note of the flavours and promptly legged it to the supermarket to get the ingredients for dinner!  Mum keeps asking if I’ve blogged this recipe yet. Marissa’s already emailed me from Boston (she’s now back home) for the recipe. Last night I got a photo of the end result after she dished it up for dinner for her and my brother.  Best I get sharing. It’s clearly a goodie!   (more…)