Blogging by Mail.. OMG!
|Hooray!!! On Thursday I received a wonderful letter from my secret partner in the BBM event, Morven, who is a lovely lady residing in New Zealand! The letter was an introduction to who she is, with great detail to her life in New Zealand with her hubby and furbaby, Scooter. Morven wanted to participate in the BBM so she created her own blog, Food Art and Random Thoughts, just for the occasion and I'm hoping she's going to find the time to post every once in a while, because it sounds like she's a magnificent cook!|
In her letter she also gave me a sneak peek at what would be arriving in my box, with the option of not peeking if I wanted to keep it a secret until it arrived. But hey, what can I say? I'm one of those people who can not resist shaking my presents and/or trying to lift the pretty paper to get a hint of what's in store! ;) So yeah, I peeked and I was just tickled to read about the tasty items she had included! I'm particularly excited that my chosen secret blogger was someone from so far away.. I've the opportunity now to taste some foods from a place I might never get to visit - so this has brought a little piece of New Zealand right into my little Ohio kitchen! How cool is that?? That. Is very cool! :D
The good news is, I didn't have to wait long after the letter arrived! I received my package yesterday afternoon! Happily, I went home for lunch at the right time as my mail lady was ringing our doorbell not 5 minutes after I arrived! I'm pretty sure I either scared her with my squeals of delight or at least convinced her there is a wacko living on her route. teee! Although my time is limited at lunch, I couldn't not rip into the box immediately! It was chock full of very well wrapped items. And in my excitement I can't tell you the order in which I opened.. but suffice to say I was just amazed at the selection...
The bad news is, I've yet to have the time to taste my goodies - we're having our own "festa" tonight so I've been in preparation from the minute I got home from the grocery store last night until 11 pm and will have to get back into my kitchen almost immediately after I'm done posting this morning to continue on so I'm not rushing at the last minute! But tomorrow after all parties are done (both virtual and "IRL") you can betcher bottom dollar that I'll be sampling!
Starting from the back and working counter clockwise, I'm the happy owner of one of Morven's favorite cooking magazines, Taste! Morven and I have very similar food loves and also, the same taste in what we like in our cooking mags.. She says this magazine is full of everyday cooking with some stylish ideas. Exactly what I look for - I agree with her in not being as fond of the more "gourmet" mags as the food is beautiful but just dishes I probably would not make at home. I haven't had a good look at it yet, but from a quick glance through it, this magazine is right up my alley - I can't wait to be able to take the time to sit with it and really read through.
Next we have a jar of Passionfruit pulp, which looks to be a sweet syrup made from passionfruit that would be heavenly drizzled over ice cream or pooled on a plate with a nice slice of cake on top soaking in the goodness.. among many other ways to enjoy it, I'm sure! Huge fan of fruity syrups here, so this is going to make my tummy very happy!
Then there is a very pretty bottle of Avocado oil infused with New Zealand's Horopito peppers. Okay, this is definitely something new to me.. and truthfully - I can not wait to try this drizzled over Meeta's Avocado & Pineapple Salsa that I'm making for the party tonight!
To the right of the oil is a bag of "Dukkah", which Morven says, isn't a traditional New Zealand food, but it's locally made and quite popular. She says that I could use the Avocado oil paired with this mix of nuts and spices to dunk bread in. I'm thinking this might be a nice thing to share with my guests this evening as well! I just bought a beautiful loaf of fresh French bread that I think would be divine for dipping into the Dukkah and oil. Yay!
Situated in front of the Dukkah is a jar of Tamarillo Chutney. Again, I'm not familiar with this fruit but from doing a little research, I can safely say I know I'll enjoy this immensely. I'm thinking this chutney would be perfect as bruschetta - I know what I'll be having for breakfast come Sunday morning! And I'm going to go with Morven's suggestion of adding a slice of good cheddar cheese on top as well.. yum!
Leaning on the chutney are two of the THREE bars of chocolate Morven sent.. Dear, sweet Morven.. I heart you! Yes, you can be sure that I was hoping and praying that whoever my secret partner was.. they'd send chocolate!! WOOOO!!! hahaha! And ohh baby did she send me some chocolate! To start with, I've got two bars of European chocolate filled with Kiwi delicacies such as passionfruit and new to me, Feijoa. Morven says the Feijoa is a fruit that is either loved or hated. I can't imagine any fruit being paired with a good chocolate being bad, so I have no doubts I'll enjoy this bar very much.
Okay now we have the one item that I am embarrassed to say, kinda scares me. hahahaha!! Morven sent me a small jar of Marmite, which is a traditional Kiwi spread. Going from her description in her letter, it sounded interesting.. and then I read what it says on the jar, "New Zealand's Favorite Yeast Spread". Mmm hmm.. I'm kinda squicked. I couldn't resist writing to Morven before I went to bed last night to thank her for my lovely package and to admit my fear of the Marmite. har! She wrote back and told me to not be afraid. tee! She said it has a salty flavor and that I should use it sparingly as it's potent. She also gave me her favorite recipe for eating the stuff:
"Take two slices of soft white bread, butter them. Spread one side thinly with marmite. Layer generously with plain flavoured salted potato chips. Real ones like Lays not Pringles or baked chips. Smash the other piece of bread on top and hold on tight while you eat or else the chips will fall out. Yum!"
Well if that's the way she likes it then that's the way I'll try it. But I might make hubbs try it first :P
Finally, in my box of goodies came another bar of chocolate. Cadbury's Dairy Milk. And although I can get this chocolate here in Ohio, I'm very happy to have an imported bar from New Zealand! I love Dairy Milk bars as they are so much more creamier than your average Hershey bar. I'll be enjoying this one very soon! =)
This was my very first Blogging by Mail event and I can't tell you how exciting it was to receive my letter and package - as well as to make a new friend. =) I can't wait to round up the last items of my own package to send to my secret partner in hopes that she'll be as happy as I was to receive mine. Many, many thanks to both Morven and Stephanie of Dispensing Happiness for hosting this event - and for truly dispensing some happiness here in Ohio. =)