Words and Recipes: VICKI RAVLICH-HORAN | Images: ASHLEE DECAIRES

One of the joys of visiting the Tauranga Farmers Market on a Saturday morning is to take your time, perhaps enjoy a leisurely breakfast with coffee in hand and a crepe from Petite Crepes or maybe one of Tucker’s Cornish Pasties washed down with a healthy smoothie from Just Blend.

Why limit your enjoyment of fresh seasonal brunches to Saturdays? Pick up some lovely local goodies from the Tauranga Farmers Market on Saturday and send the invites out for a brilliant brunch on Sunday. Here are a few ideas.

BROAD BEAN BRUSCHETTA

Move over avocado on toast. This spring, embrace fresh, beautiful broad beans. Once double shelled they are gorgeously tender and creamy. Puree until smooth and serve as a dip or keep slightly chunky for the perfect toast topping.

a loaf of Flaveur bread (I used their spelt sourdough)
3–4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil from Bert at Katikati Frantoio
500g shelled broad beans from Riverside Growers or Garden Fresh
2 cloves garlic from Catos
2 handfuls mint leaves from Liberty Growers
½ cup grated farmhouse cheddar from Mount Eliza Cheese
juice of 1 lemon from Kaimai Lettuce
salt & pepper

Cut bread on an angle into 1cm thick slices. Lay on a baking tray and brush with a little of the olive oil. Bake for 15 minutes at 180°C or until light golden and crispy. Remove and allow to cool.

Bring a pot of water to the boil. Add broad beans and cook for 1 minute. Drain and allow to cool, before popping their dull skins to reveal the bright green beans.

Place cooked, shelled beans in a food processor along with the garlic, mint, cheese and lemon juice.  With the motor running add the remaining olive oil.  Check seasoning and adjust to taste.

Dollop the broad bean mix on top of the toasted bread and serve with a fresh tomato salsa (made with tomatoes from Paul’s Tomatoes or Rivendel Gardens) and or a few slices of crispy bacon from Pirongia Bacon.

PANCAKES

Always a crowd pleaser in our household! Top with stunning local berries (strawberries from Simply Strawberries and blueberries from Out of the Blue). Or make sure you have a jar of one of Milly’s Fine Foods lovely jams on hand to spread on, I particularly love her boysenberry jam.

1 cup self-raising flour
2 tbsp sugar
1 of Nicki’s eggs
¾ cup Jersey Girls Organic Milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
25g butter + extra for the pan

In a bowl mix together the flour and sugar. In another bowl whisk the egg, milk and vanilla. Then whisk the wet mixture into the dry. Melt the 25g of butter in a pan you will cook the pancakes in.  Once melted, whisk into the pancake batter.

Allow the batter to rest for 15 minutes before placing ¼ cup of the batter in a heated pan and cooking until bubbles appear. Flip the pancake and cook for a further minute before placing on a plate and beginning again. After every couple of pancakes, melt a little more butter in the pan to prevent them sticking.

TIP – make sure your pan is not too hot. It’s better to cook them slowly over a medium heat than burn them before the batter is cooked through.

CHEAT’S SHAKSHUKA

The word shakshuka comes from Arabic, meaning ‘a haphazard mixture’ or ‘all mixed up’. It’s a great one-pan dish which makes an easy brunch, especially thanks to a jar of Real Pasta’s Puttanesca sauce.

1–2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, from Abundant Backyard, peeled and sliced
1 red capsicum, from Southern Belle, sliced
2 hot Goan chorizo, from Artisan Hungarian Co, sliced
1 jar of Puttanesca Pasta Sauce, from Real Pasta NZ
4–6 of Nicki’s eggs

In a large oven proof pan sauté the onion, capsicum and chorizo in a little olive oil. When the onion is soft and translucent stir in the jar of pasta sauce. When the sauce is bubbling use the back of a spoon to make an indent in the sauce and crack the egg directly into it. Repeat with the remaining 4 to 5 eggs, depending on how many you can fit.

Transfer the pan to the oven and bake for 8–12 minutes, checking often to ensure the eggs are as you like them. The egg whites should be opaque and the yolks would have risen a bit should still jiggle in the centres when you shimmy the pan. Keep in mind that they’ll continue cooking when you remove the pan from the oven.

Serve immediately garnished with fresh herbs along with your favourite bread from Flaveur Bread or The Whipped Baker.

SPRING ONION TORTILLA

Bind some seasonal vegetables (asparagus, zucchini, cherry tomatoes), even your leftover roast veg, in some eggs, serve with a punchy relish (like Milly’s Fine Foods –  Kasundi), some fresh rocket or baby leaves (like that from Liberty Growers) and you have a brilliant brunch dish or in my household a regular dinner option. For this one we used baby spring onions and new potatoes.

350–300g new potatoes from Catos
olive oil from Katikati Frantoio
1 bunch young spring onions, trimmed, from Abundant Backyard or Six Toed Fox
5 free range eggs, from Nicki’s Eggs
¼ cup Jersey Girls Organic Milk
1 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 180°C.

Par-cook the potatoes in a pot of salted water. Drain and allow to cool.

In an oven proof pan heat a little olive oil and add the spring onions. Cook for 1–2 minutes then add the potatoes.

Beat the eggs, milk and salt and pour into the pan. Cook gently for 5 minutes before transferring the pan to the oven and cook for 10–15 minutes or until the egg has just set.

Allow it to rest for a couple of minutes then carefully flip onto a serving dish and enjoy.

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