MESSAGES FROM THE SECRET ZENDERS FOODIE: IT'S THE SEASON TO BE SEASONAL


Hi, I'm the Zenders secret foodie! I read cookbooks like nursery rhymes, have a pantry filled with ingredients you've never heard of, and can recite recipes faster than you can say your phone number. And I'm here to preach to you about seasonal goods.


You know it, I know it, everyone knows it. Fresh is best. And as I pick the last brussels sprouts from my garden, and scan my eyes over the soon to be ready broccoli, cauliflower, tomatoes and shoot loads of kale, I can't help but think about all the deliciousness that this (not so) little garden provides. The month that is November is plentiful with wonderful vegetables. I've got my greens - hello lettuce, broccoli, courgette and asparagus. Summer fruits are starting to flourish - strawberries all day, every day. And the herb garden is rocking - coriander, parsley and basil are in abundance.


Let it be known that we're a meat eating family. But is there anything better than a rack of lamb, beautifully basted using a rosemary twig, and served with a perfect pea puree or creamy parsnip mash? A meal is not a meal without a selection of vegetables, served to perfection.


If you're looking for inspiration, you've come to the right place. Asparagus you ask? Throw it straight on the BBQ, with good olive oil and plenty of salt and pepper. Those freshly picked mushrooms? Two words: stuffed 'shrooms. What about broccoli? Lightly steam and make a quick and easy salad with some cranberries and feta. And good old courgette? Nothing is better than a delicious zucchini bread, just like this one from the Kiwi Country Girl.


But what's my favourite? It has to be a good, proper Panzanella. It's fresh, it's flavourful, and it makes the most of that slightly stale bread - and a perfect component in a late spring dinner. Check out my recipe below - just don't tell my mother I shared it with you!


A secret foodie recipe: Panzanella

Ingredients

  • 1 ciabatta loaf

  • 2 cups tomatoes (whatever varieties you've got), roughly chopped

  • 1 small red onion, finely sliced

  • 2 capsicums (whatever colours you've got)

  • 2 tablespoons capers

  • A handful of fresh basil