What’s on your plate: April

The lush green of summer has turned to yellow, orange and brown, the spice jars are down from the shelf, the deep casseroles and baking dishes have come out to play Nigel Slater

One of the good things about autumn is the produce: apples, pears and feijoas, pumpkins, leafy greens and the start of what I call ‘root season’. There is such a wealth of ingredients and ideas around that it is hard sometimes to know where to start – well that is if you think about these things as often as I do. For this month’s #whatsonyourplate challenge I am featuring three things that are good to try this season.


With all the apples about, I thought I would have a go at this apple and sage butter from Kylee Newton’s The Modern Preserver. It is so simple to make, but don’t get involved in another task and forget the cooking apples (did I do that?). The result is a lovely spread for good bread at breakfast, or perhaps on a scone too. I just made one small jar and think it could be good as a filling for a Victoria sponge along with some mascarpone.

I also made a batch of feijoa chutney from In a Pickle by Kirsten Day. I have made other pickles with feijoas in the past, but this recipe was new to me, using the whole fruit along with apple and onion. I used apple cider vinegar and brown sugar and also added a few raisins. We will test it out in a couple of weeks. If you don’t know what a feijoa looks like when you cut it open, see below. You can see what they look like whole in Monday’s post.

Meatballs all the way

Last week I wrote about the pork, pumpkin and sage meatballs I made from Steffi Knowles-Dellner’s Lagom which were really delicious. This week’s meatballs (yes….it is something we often eat…) were the beef and courgette (or zucchini) meatballs from Julia Turshen’s Now and Again (you can find the recipe if you scroll down here). I made half the quantity that the recipe calls for, and cooked them in the oven. It really pays to dry off the courgette to prevent too wet a mixture. The tahini dressing really makes the dish, and of course goes well with lamb meat balls too.

Below you can see the mixture in progress, the finished product, and the salad with mesclun, tomatoes and feta we had along side them. There were also new potatoes and the leftover sweetcorn and red capsicum side dish from the salmon burgers we had on Saturday. I’ve made these meatballs a few times as you can tell from the state of the pages in the cookbook so yes I will make again!

I have so many ideas of what to cook next, that I am not sure where to start. There are several things that appeal in Molly Baz’s book, and with the long Easter weekend ahead I should have some time. In the meantime, I stumbled across this the other day if you like cooking and want a smile…. A Love Letter to Cooking from MyaHatesTomatoes.

This well be entered in the What’s on Your Plate blog challenge hosted by Canadian bloggers Widow Badass and Retirement Reflections. This goes live on the first Wednesday of each month and you can join in too with a food related post, just by adding yours to their linkup.

*Footnote – yes courgettes again….. 🙂

Thistles and Kiwis is a Wellington, New Zealand based blog written by Barbara, who likes cats, summer, good food and pretends to garden.

You can find Thistles and Kiwis on Facebook, and also on Instagram @thistlesandkiwis. If you want to get in touch, email me on thistlesandkiwis@gmail.com or lofgren@thistlesandkiwis.org


    1. Your food pictures are so darn good! And the meals you make delicious. In summer or autumn it’s fabulous to use the bounty to the max and try new things. Bernie

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Your food pictures are so darn good! And the meals you make delicious. In summer or autumn it’s fabulous to use the bounty to the max and try new things. Bernie

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I admire your appetite for new dishes. I am stodgily conservative but we don’t have a great many opportunities to buy novel ingredients.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m reading this eating the leftovers of last night’s Swedish meatballs for brekky. I literally love everything you’ve mentioned this month & can’t believe I still haven’t cooked anything from Lagom.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You are entering my favorite time of year. I love everything fall. The apple butter looks delicious. Actually all of your food looks delicious. There are so many wonderful things to make with apples. We are into spring weather it was 86 degrees F here yesterday. That’s actually very warm for this time of year. I am trying to enjoy the good in each season.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh wow I’ve never seen feijoas before. I assume they are like a tomato if you use them for chutney? I love the overall vibe of Autumnal foods this post. Thanks for sharing

    Liked by 1 person

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