Celebrating Tassievore Style

Wow, it’s been a busy few weeks!  With Christmas, New Years and my birthday all within 10 days, I have been pressed to develop a series of decadent and delicious Tassievore treats to celebrate the season.

Christmas Eve saw us tucking into an Adzuki and Mushroom Loaf, garden salad and Parsnip Bravas.  Amazing Kanel Bulla (Cinnamon Rolls) were baked for Christmas Morning Brunch at a friends house.  Oh my goodness…who needs sugar when you can make these so delicious with honey and hazelnuts!

veggie loaf

Adzuki and Mushroom Loaf – doesn’t look that pretty, but it was yummy and fit the vegetarian, gluten free, dairy free, Tassievore requirements

kanel bulla

Oh my goodness, these were good! butter, flour, milk, cinnamon, hazelnuts, honey and yeast (basically).

A selection of truly decadent cheeses, apricot paste and two types of tassievore crackers were served up for grazing at my birthday party at Cascade Gardens.  Coupled with a homemade Tassie Cream – modelled on Bailey’s Irish Cream…it was pretty special!

Tassie cheddar, wheat thins, apricot and citrus paste and homemade Tassie Whiskey Cream.

Tassie cheddar, wheat thins, apricot and citrus paste and homemade Tassie Whiskey Cream.

Basically, I combined cocoa (judged a spice in this context :-)); honey; cream; cinnamon; cream and a raw egg with some of the Lark Distillery Whiskey Liqueur.  It was pretty delicious!

Now I must confess, I was planning to make my own Tassievore birthday cake, but then my friend offered to make one for me.  She asked, “do you want me to try to make it all Tasmanian?”  And guess, what I said!  “No, make it as decadent as possible, please.”  Bad Tassievore!  But wow, it was a pretty amazing rich, chocolatey extravaganza and I really enjoyed it, but realised that it didn’t take very much of it to satisfy me after 2 months now of having much less sugar and chocolate than my previous life involved.

I did get a chance to try out my idea for a Tassievore Birthday Cake though, when my colleagues persuaded me to bring a cake into work for my birthday.  I was a bit skeptical about the virtues of honey sweetened cake, but I must say that I definitely hit on a winner!  Margaret even said that it was the best cake that she has tried in years!  So below is my recipe for Birthday Bliss Cake.  Enjoy!

Birthday Bliss Cakebday bliss cake

  • 200g Butter
  • 200g honey
  • 3 eggs
  • 100ml cream
  • 200g Ground Hazelnuts (I used about ¼ roasted and ¾ raw)
  • 125g flour
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • Fresh apricots and cherries, pitted

Preheat oven to 180 degrees.  Butter cake tin. Arrange fruit on bottom of tin. Combine butter and honey, stir in eggs (1 at a time). Add cream and stir. Add hazelnut meal, baking powder and flour and mix to combine. Pour mixture over fruit. Bake for approximately 1 hour.  Cover with foil if top is getting to brown. Enjoy!

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Merry Christmas from the Tassievores!

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Full steam ahead for all things Tassievore, we are popping up our Christmas post to you a week early, just in case you need a little inspiration or want to share with us what you are planning.

There is a greater variety of fresh produce available now than when the challenge started so no excuses – have a very Merry Christmas Tassievores!

Here’s the rundown on what some of the team are thinking about:

Lissa

I had to think a bit about what to make for our small Christmas Eve family dinner as between us, we are: Tassievore (whole hog), vegetarian, gluten free and 7 years old.  So, I am planning to make a saffron, fennel and garlic custard tart using quinoa and egg to make the base. A big salad of whatever greens and flowers are in the garden and dessert will be a mixed berry Clafouti and I might try to whip up some honey ice cream to go with it. I am even considering trying to make Tassievore Egg Nog… the only Tasmanian brandy that I can find is $120/bottle though…

Wishing you all a very happy Tassievore holiday season and may your new year be filled with Tasmanian goodness!

Kym

After five months spent in eight countries, this Tassievore is looking forward to spending time at Xmas at home doing absolutely nothing! Except eating good Tassie food, and hanging out in the garden with our energetic dog Jaspar. Our quiet vegetarian Xmas lunch will consist of Middle East themed salads with fresh vegies and herbs from the garden, some homemade flat bread, local haloumi, and Kindred Organics quinoa as a cous cous substitute. Washed down with a glass of Tamar Valley white wine from one of the local vineyards – gotta love such great produce within walking distance of the house! Wishing you all a fantastic Xmas and New Year spent with good friends, family and great food.

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Pen

This year I will be spending Christmas tucked away with my nearest and dearest on the Tasman Peninsula. We will be kicking back with a great big Tasmanian seafood platter, Tasmanian cheeses, salads, berry fruit and wine. I hope to get my hands on some Tasmanian non-sparkling cider too – think Lost Pippin or Willie Smiths.  For Christmas Eve we are booked to go out to dinner at the Stewarts Bay Lodge and are looking forward to sampling the succulent Doo Town Venison and the Huon Valley mushroom, tarragon and Tongola capri pie. Delicious! So delightful to see so many Tasmanian ingredients on their menu.  For someone who spent half her life as a vegetarian it’s almost wicked to confess how much I enjoy the occasional foray into the world of flesh. I tend to stick to wallaby and fish but some festive eating outside the square is always refreshing.

Now for the recipe: Hazelnut and honey biscuits

I have to confess that I completely made this recipe up with the help of my trusty hand-me-down food processor. But it seemed to work, so hopefully you will have a bit of fun making your own similarly free-style variations. These would make great last minute gifts for Tassievore friends or visiting relatives (nut allergy not withstanding…). Enjoy!

Caitlin

I’ll be on the mainland this year, so Christmas lunch is well and truly out of my hands! I’m looking forward to the “Vicavore” goodies at my Uncle’s farm, though I’m sure the obligatory Tasmanian smoked salmon will make an appearance. This year I’m doing a lot of homemade gifts – Tassievore treats making their way to Melbourne with me include hazelnut biscotti, honey spice biscuits, jars of lemon curd and this Spiced Spelt Loaf that wow’ed people at the Sustainable Living Festival a few months ago. Merry Christmas and a very happy New Year everyone – don’t forget to celebrate the start of 2013 with a glass of local bubbles!

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Andrew

I’ll be keeping things simple and clean – last year was a monster of a day that saw me plucking a goose and dropping the rings in preparation.  Neither of those were a euphemism.  This year I think I’ll ignore most of the food and presents hype and go for a day walk.  Man has to eat though, so for dinner I’m planning something really seasonal: backyard pink eyes, podded peas and a locally brought bird with loads of fresh herbs stuffed under the skin before roasting.

Here’s something I’ve never done but am tempted to try for a low key dessert.  Merry Christmas all! Looking forward to 2013, the year of the Tassievore.

Erin

The hustle and bustle before Christmas grows every year at York Town Organics, so my family and I welcome Christmas day as a chance to relax, eat too much food and enjoy each other’s company.  In the morning we will meet at the farmhouse for a breakfast of croissants, freshly picked berries, mums home-made jam, and coffee made with gorgeous Elgaar Farm milk. We’ll then take our much loved hounds for a walk to our neighbours for a Christmas toast with a stiff drink and some home-made delights.  Lunch will be a of locally grown ham, salads from our micro leaves, a Nichols chicken stuffed with herbs and our baby carrots and Beetroots roasted and drizzled with olive oil and balsamic.  Berries and mum’s pav to finish.  After lunch we will divvy up the leftovers and literally roll-on home.  Another year well spent, another locally-inspired feast consumed and another day of family company enjoyed. Merry Christmas you lovely folk, be merry and eat lots of yummy local tucka!

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Sarah

This year I am hosting my first Christmas, and we are feeding 19 people… Totally Tassievore style!!!

It’s a team effort, we are starting with Tassie cray, abalone (caught by my clever partner) and salmon roulade, then the full traditional roast: a Tasmanian turkey, pork and some beautiful fresh vegies.  To top it all off: a Tassievore-style Christmas pudding and summer pudding (using berries from my back yard).  The highlight so far has been sourcing ingredients for the Christmas pudding (I may be going a little far, but I am dehydrating my own currants and cherries for it…) It looks and smells delicious!

I love Christmas, and all the ‘hassle’ that goes with it, I love the manic preparations and the beautiful feast shared with your most special people.  Having the added requirement for Tassievore has just added to the fun for me, and honestly it has been easy. We truly are spoiled for choice, the mainlanders coming across to share our table are going to realise how good we have it.

Merry Christmas from the Tassievores!!

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Christmas came a little early this year!

The Tassievores are feeling pretty great right now!  Pen got her cycle map out in time, our festivity plans are coming along fine (Christmas meal-envy blog next week), we have + 400 likes on the FB page and the sun’s out.

(It’s not really, but it was two days ago and that was awesome).

We did get some fantastic news today too, but that’s a secret until its all signed and locked in.  To celebrate all of the above, here’s a little festive cheer that’s brightening our day, featuring a few of the Tassievore team. Tassievore’s got moves