Spring Forward

Spring Forward

Hello from Alison

We wrote last weekend to ask you to ‘rate us’ – how was the experience of shopping online with Scarecrow. We had hoped one or two might take the time to let us know…What we didn’t anticipate was the dozens of people who gave generous feedback and lovely comments – and helpful suggestions! Here are just a few of the comments:

We are humbled and grateful. A couple of people recommended more Gluten Free options in the ready meals range and we are working on this! So, some new products are being cooked up – keep an eye on our website… We do have plenty of GF options in our loaf cakes range (which I have to say are quite excellent, and a new one on its way soon!!).

We appreciate all your comments and most especially your support which has been critical to us. Thank you.

I recently read a short story written by Bonnie, the daughter of our florist Jane. What are our 12-year-olds imagining their future might look like? Read Bonnie’s vision at the bottom of this newsletter. Recommended reading!

Here’s one of my favourite go-to recipes for you to try! Great for a lunch dish, or an entree before dinner. It’s reasonably quick to assemble, colourful and quite festive too (good as a platter on a Christmas table for instance). You can substitute walnuts for hazelnuts if you prefer.

A word about cured meats. They are a little heavier on salt, so no need to add much when you use them in a dish. They are rich and flavourful, a recipe like this uses only about 45 grams of product per person. A great way to include a little meat in your diet without eating a large quantity of it. Smoked Duck keeps its moisture, and it comes with the fat and skin on the edge of the sliced breast. It’s a minimal part of the slice and I recommend you just leave it on – no need to remove the fatty edge (it adds to the flavour and richness).

Hazelnut, Orange & Smoked Duck Breast Salad

At Scarecrow we make finely sliced Smoked Duck Breast. It’s something I discovered many years ago when I lived in France and I just love it for a special occasion. It’s delicate, rich and very tasty. It’s not something readily available or frequently used in New Zealand, so here is an easy recipe.

Allow about 5 slices of Duck per person. This recipe will serve 4.

Ingredients
1/2 red onion, finely sliced and sprinkled with flaky salt and a little sugar, leave while you prepare the other ingredients (you can replace this with spring onion, or leave out the onion if you don’t like it)
1 cos lettuce, roughly chop leaves into generous pieces.
1 bunch watercress or rocket, chopped
Approx 180 grams smoked duck breast slices
1 cup hazelnuts, toasted
1/3 cup sliced figs, soak in hot water for 30 minutes (Marsanta figs are excellent quality)
3 oranges, finely segmented without pith. Use a small sharp knife to prepare the orange segments.

Dry roast the hazelnuts in the oven at 150C for 20 minutes. Remove and put into a paper bag (be careful – they’re very hot!), shake and roll to remove hazelnut skins. When cooled, remove from bag and roughly crush them.
In a salad bowl, mix greens together. Wipe any excess salt mix off the red onion slices. Toss onion and orange slices with drained fig pieces. spread over salad greens. Sprinkle hazelnuts on top and finish with duck slices.

Vinaigrette
Get creative!
I recommend you use a good quality fruity aged balsamic or the Te Mata Caramelised Fig Balsamic Vinegar. Scarecrow sells De Nigris balsamic vinegars and the Caramelised Fig Balsamic, they are delicious vinegars and this really makes a difference to this very simple vinaigrette!

Oil: I love olive oil (plenty of good local ones to choose from!), but you can use Hazelnut Oil from Uncle Joe’s – it’s a treat!
Portion 1/3 vinegar to oil, to make 1/3 cup of vinaigrette. Add 1/4 tsp salt and a good grind of pepper. If you want an emulsified vinaigrette, add a generous spoonful of Dijon mustard, a honey mustard would work well if you have used Red Wine vinegar instead of the sweeter vinegars I mentioned earlier. Shake vinaigrette vigorously and drizzle over your salad. Serve immediately! Enjoy with a crusty sourdough baguette or any other freshly baked favourite bread.
Bon Appetit!

Alison


It’s NZ Cheese Month 

October means Cheese Month: the early days of spring bring warmer soil and new grass growth, meaning happy sheep & goats. Happy animals mean top quality milk, and in NZ we really are spoilt to have an abundance of world-class producers creating some very special cheeses. We may still be restricted, but what better way to celebrate NZ Cheese Month than popping in to Scarecrow and filling up your shopping cart with some of the gorgeous cheeses we have in store. At Scarecrow, we are proud to stock the following local brands: Grinning GeckoClevedon BuffaloMahoeLittle River and Over the Moon. Read more about a new-to-Scarecrow recommendation further on in the newsletter. Come on in and support these wonderful NZ cheesemakers this October!


Honey, honey

On the subject of cheese, have you met its best friend yet? Honey is one of the sweetest accompaniments to any cheeseboard – a match made in heaven! Lucky us to have so many wonderful local suppliers gracing the Scarecrow shelves. The Manuka we all know & love, bush blends, breakfast blends, native blends, and our favourite for the weekend cheeseboard – infused honey. Smoked walnut anyone? Our lovely team will help you select the perfect match for your next platter. Pop in and see them!


Treat yourself, with Blue Earth

We are thrilled to welcome the latest Blue Earth products to Scarecrow. Try the new Blue Earth Eye Mask designed in Black Velvet, a stunning combination of essential oils promoting deep relaxation & sleep with a light-blocking, soft mask that is recommended to be used either chilled or lightly warmed. At a time when there is a lot of stress around, this is a luxurious, affordable & natural way to promote more healthy sleep or simply to use if you’re enjoying some deep breathing or meditation. Perfect to complete a yoga session.


House cured duck 

When people try our house-cured duck breast, they are inevitably blown away. It has a delicate texture and bold flavour, and one of the reasons we love this product so much is that it comes straight out of our kitchen! Order online now for contactless delivery within Auckland.

 


Spice up your life

New to our range are Uncle Dunkle’s Wood-Fired Chilli Sauces. Made in the Coromandel with NZ Tea Tree and a wood oven, these super spicy sauces have arrived just in time for BBQ season. Slather on whatever it is you’re throwing onto the grill & watch those smoky flavours intensify. Dee-lish!

 


Try Peckham’s Gold Washed Rind this Cheese Month!

We have some new cheeses in store to celebrate Cheese Month. We suggest you try the Peckham’s Gold from the Moody Cow cheese makers at Linkwater in the Marlborough Sounds. They use A2 Pasteurised Cows’ Milk to create this French-inspired washed rind cheese which is subtle but with rich pungency. Washed in Peckham’s Cider every other day for 2 weeks this delectable cheese is creamy and flavoursome. A brilliant addition to a cheese board or try it lightly melted over pasta and enjoy with a glass of Coal Pit Sauvignon Blanc!


Crisp spring cider for the win

In keeping with the theme of spring, platters & local producers, we can’t not mention Abel Cider. Made from freshly harvested pears & apple, Abel Cider is unfined, and unfiltered, preserving the natural fruit characteristics. It’s just perfect enjoyed with aforementioned cheeses, cured meats and fresh spring salad. Find Abel Cider in our cellar at 811 Mt Eden Road, or shop online now for contactless delivery across Auckland.


Spring Forward!

We’re blooming happy the days have lengthened and the soils are warming… the budding leaves on our trees can celebrate the new season with plenty of good spring rain to support them ( and fill our thirsty dams!).
With this comes a riot of colour to the flowers palette. Whether you’re looking for delicate and soft tones or a vibrant mix, the spring offering is perfect. The hellebores are gloriously rich, proteas are boldly strutting in their velvety finery, new varieties of feathery gerbras have elevated this once shunned flower to new heights, and delicate traditional spring bulbs are plentiful to name a few of delights.
Coming very soon are the peonies – such a sought after bloom, tender, fragile and a short season. We purchase export quality heads – and we will let you know when they arrive!
Enjoy flowers at home or send them to a friend. We know they will be appreciated. A sure way to lift the mood.
We must add that we have a collection of pot plants which are stunning – drop by Mt Eden Rd store to explore the offering.


Aotearua
A short story by Bonnie McCarrison

“Welcome aboard today’s 2-Earth-N-Z RapidSpaceShuttle heading to Aotearua. This is your captain speaking. We are currently 2 minutes from orbit and today’s trip will take approximately 20 minutes. Our current speed is 60,000 km per hour. Soon if you look to your left you will be able to see 2-Earth-CHINA, currently the solar system’s largest 2-Earth complex,” the pilot announces with his voice breaking. Luckily I have a window seat and as I swivel my head to the left, all I can see is the planet that once was my home glowing yellow and orange as it disappears from my sight. It is hard to believe that Earth was once a beautiful sparkling blue and lush green planet. Oh, the sadness in my heart for what chaos humanity has created and what fear burns in my gut for the future.

The shuttle lands smoothly and comes to a complete stop within seconds. I take my pitifully small single state-issued piece of luggage and prepare to exit the shuttle. After being under lockdown in an air-conditioned house to keep out the scorching heat for 4 years, packing my bag was the toughest part of relocating to Aotearua. I know my brother, Toby is waiting for me and I will be safe, however, all I can think about is how scary and surreal this moment is. My breathing is shallow and my palms are sweaty as we all slowly file out of the RapidSpaceShuttle and head to the conveyor belt. A human conveyor belt I repeat in my mind, astonished with this new totally man-made planet. I’m happy Toby and I voted last month with all the remaining New Zealand citizens (youth) to name our planet Aoteorua and I’m fascinated to see our new flag flying high for the first time. The unfurling Koru on it makes my mind spiral back to my once happy and contented life before waves of tragedy and disaster brought Planet Earth to its final end.

As I am issued my district and apartment number, I wonder how my new surroundings will look and how society will function without any adults. Recent memories of Covid Victor 73 haunt me as I remember its rapid spread and how it tragically killed all the over 30’s including my beautiful Mother. It feels like yesterday that she held me and comforted me as we watched the start of that deadly algae, Xentpholia. When it struck the globe’s oceans, transforming the endless scintillating blue into a fluorescent stinking orange within months. I remember the year 2205, exactly 4 years ago when another strain hit~ Covid Romeo. The deadliest one back then that killed all the elderly, all the grandparents leaving my Mothers generation in shock and struggling to manage the Government. I’ve played the sadness of my short life over and over in my head but the grief after losing our Mum soon turned to fury as the years of global warming finally passed the point of no return. Earth’s ever-rising temperatures rose drastically and the planet called it quits. Photosynthesis came to a halt, all vegetation shrivelled up and died leaving the land a dusty barren yellow nightmare. In desperation, I recall the way our elders, all aged under 30, had a matter of months to finish building our new planets in outer space. Each country in charge of its own new destiny separated from one another because of hatred towards those who never tried to stop emissions and pollution.

My heart is heavy and my mind is desperate to get out of the past as the BulletRail heading for Rem-95 pulls up to the platform and the conveyor belt moves us into the cramped carriage. Not everyone is alone like me. Some are with siblings and cousins and some appear to be in groups perhaps they are friends and neighbours of one another.. But as for me… I am and feel totally by myself. Not abandoned however because I know that change is necessary and that my resilience will keep me going. The BulletRail bolts right over to Rem-95, my new home; a 95 storey building filled with one bedroom apartments. Some clumsily clamber out of the BulletRail, others gracefully skip. As for me I dash right into my big bros arms, for he is there waiting for me at the foot of the building just like he promised. Hesitantly we head up 91 floors right into our apartment, our new whare.

I begin to unpack my limited belongings into the tiny empty closet, it reminds me of my heart. Tears roll down my face as I hand Toby the last two pictures of Mum. We hang them up on the bare wall and hug each other tight. “C’mon Sis, let’s bounce! This is our new beginning and let’s go check it out.” Back down the 91 floors we go before nervously entering our new neighbourhood hoping to find a skateboard park. Beyond our doorway, we find an open courtyard with low tables and huge beanbags. Skateboarding can wait and we stop to relax and contemplate our future. I ask my brother about Aotearua’s new society…the new limitations, new restrictions, new lifestyle, new opportunities, my new school? The questions are endless because nothing in this new life is the same as before. My mind races as I consider a life without our Mum, without any animals and trees. I am reassured when Toby reminds me that we are finally safe here and staying on planet earth would have meant certain death. It is then he reminds me of what our beloved mother said to us before she so cruelly died …‘You can’t come back to something that is gone.’

 

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