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Blueberry Cheesecake Bars

Blueberry Cheesecake Bars: Recipe

Creamy lemon cheesecake bars swirled with blueberries on a simple biscuit base. Careful, this may become a new favourite!


Blueberry Cheesecake Bars

1.5 cups basic biscuits
6 Tablespoons or 90g melted butter
1/3 cup (67g) granulated sugar

450g cream cheese, softened to room temperature
1 large egg
1/3 cup caster sugar
Zest of 2 medium lemons
Juice of 1 medium lemon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 and 1/2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

Preheat oven to 180°C. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with foil with some overhang and set aside.
Crust: Using a food processor or blender, process biscuits into a fine crumb. Pour into a medium bowl and mix with melted butter and sugar. Press into the lined pan and bake for five minutes. Allow to cool while you prepare the filling.
Filling: Beat the cream cheese for 1 minute or until smooth. Add the egg, sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice and vanilla extract and continue to beat until smooth and creamy. Gently fold in the blueberries and spoon the filling onto the crust.
Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until the cheesecake has set and the edges are lightly browned. The bars will be very puffy but will sink slightly as they cool. Allow to cool for 30 minutes at room temperature on a wire rack, then chill in the refrigerator for at least three hours. Lift the foil out of the pan and cut into squares.



Classic Cookers

Oven Envy: Classic Cookers

When it comes to creating culinary excellence, Classic Cookers is turning the heat up, with a range of hand-built electric ovens that combine traditional looks with modern technology.

Classic Cookers


Manufactured in Gloucestershire, England, Everhot heat storage range cookers are cast iron cookers which steadily transfer the heat from their core into their ovens and hotplates, meeting all your cooking needs with exceptional energy efficiency. Yes, that includes slow cooking, baking, roasting, grilling or pan cooking, all at once, on one range.

In the Bramleys Road showroom, Brendon Rowe-Mitchell opens the door of one oven to reveal a digital control panel, a striking contrast against the mid-century aesthetic of its exterior. The basis of heat storage range cookers is that they stay on 24/7, using less electricity than a traditional oven. You can set precise temperatures, set it to a timer, or shut it down in summer.

Serious cooks love the graduated hob top. Rather than changing temperature dials, the difference between simmering and boiling is the pot’s positioning on the stove top.
The 60mm is the baby of the range, designed to fit a standard oven space. It features two ovens and a graduated cast iron hob top. As the size increases, so too do your options. Ovens, plate warmer, induction hobs and simmer plates become opportunities to customise your cooker. A colour palette of 16 provides opportunity to further make it your own.


If you are looking to make a statement in your kitchen, hit the road and visit Classic Cookers at 151 Bramleys Road Flaxton, phone
03 310 6534 or check out


market to table

Finding Spring Fare: All-new ‘market to table’ cooking demonstrations

At the beginning of this month, the Farmers Market Spring Festival launched all-new ‘market to table’ cooking demonstrations. Jax Hamilton introduced the first of these with her usual enthusiasm and flair from the kitchen verandah at Riccarton House.


market to table


The demonstrations will continue from 10-10:30am every Saturday during the warmer months, with chefs sharing culinary techniques and unique ways to utilise produce that can be purchased fresh right from the growers in the market. The recipes will then be available on the website.

“I love Christchurch Farmers Market, it’s my local and I’m there most Saturdays to support my community and the produce passionately displayed,” Jax says.
“Being able to inspire the crowds this spring to create something simple, seasonal and delicious is exactly what I’m about. Food is a gift and what we eat needs to be produced with love.”


market to table

Christchurch Farmers Market runs every Saturday from 9am-1pm on the grounds of the historic Riccarton House & Bush. For more details and the schedule of chefs, visit or email
Jax shares one of her favourite recipes.




Lamb Pizza
40g tomato puree
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tbsp olive oil
¼ cup tomato sauce
2 x pizza bases
20 slices lamb salami
½ red onion, finely sliced
½ red capsicum, de-seeded, finely sliced
75g cherry bocconcini
100g feta
50g rocket
Handful mint/parsley chopped
Salt and pepper


Mix together the puree, garlic, olive oil and tomato sauce. Add a little more oil if it’s a little thick. Set aside.
Preheat oven to suggested packet temperature. If you have one, pop your pizza stone in too. Dust your bench and take your bases, divide the tomato sauce and spoon/spread all over. Top with salami, onion and capsicum. Rip the bocconcini into bite sized pieces and sprinkle over the top.
Take half the feta, crumble in your fingers and sprinkle over the pizza, drizzle with a little more oil, season with plenty of black pepper and a little salt. When the oven is to temperature, pop in and bake until the cheese has melted and the crust is golden and gorgeous. Remove from the oven. Sprinkle over the rocket, remaining feta and garnish with labneh dressing and chopped herbs.

Labneh Dressing

2 balls labneh
Drizzle of lemon olive oil or regular
Pinch chilli
Salt and black pepper

Whisk ingredients together, taste and season.




Simon Gault

Simon Says: Q&A with Simon Gault

Metropol catches up with popular Kiwi chef Simon Gault to discuss his healthy new passion and his go-to comfort meals for winter.

Simon Gault

Where did your passion for food come from?

From a young age, my parents both cooked; we always ended up with interesting stuff in our school lunches. They had friends in the hospitality industry, so I got to see into kitchens, which turned me on. Food is inspiring really; I’m like a kid in a candy store and that’s naturally evolved from a young age.

Why do you think the country has connected with you and what you do?

I dislike the word ‘celebrity chef’ intensely. I’m like any another chef out there. I never thought I’d be on TV, had no burning desire to do it. Once you get on the box people see what you’re like, see the real you. Someone said to me once, the most important thing about doing TV is to remember your mates will see it. They know what you’re like, so be yourself. I’m myself on TV; it’s not an acting role. You just do what you do – some people will like it, some people won’t.

Last year was pretty busy for you, with a three-part doco on obesity and a new restaurant Giraffe on Auckland’s Viaduct. What does the next 12 months have in store for you?

I’ve become pretty passionate about the health sector and helping people like me really – people who are overweight and struggling with it. The documentary ‘Why Are We Fat’ helped a lot of people. I get emails from around the world saying it changed their lives. People come up to me in the restaurant in tears saying, ‘you don’t know what you’ve done for me’. That inspires me to help more people. I have the ability to make an impact – we’re the third fattest nation in the world.

What is the winning recipe for a great dining establishment?

Family – that sums it up really. All our people that work in the restaurant are our family. We spend a lot of time there, so it’s about enjoying it, being a family. We employ people who are fun and love what they do. If we can have that family environment, that rubs off on customers; they feel it. Obviously you need the other things – best produce and cooked well – but without family you’ve got nothing.

Heading into winter, what are some of your go-to comfort meals?

It’s pretty hard to beat a casserole in winter – Moroccan lamb casserole or beef casserole; they’re hearty and delicious and will fill you up in winter.

What’s the most fulfilling aspect of what you do?

Spending time with my daughter, nothing beats that

Total Food Equipment

The craft of cookware: local culinary experts Total Food Equipment share their passions

The season for hygge is well and truly here and, if you’re a foodie, or just someone who likes to get cosy with the family and a bowl of homemade soup, then a visit Total Food Equipment is a must-do before you hunker down.

Total Food Equipment

The store is a gorgeous trove of all things cooking and baking. From oyster forks to cinnamon oyster tins, whatever is on your wish list, you will find it here and more besides. The baking section alone is extensive – a home baker’s heaven of tins and moulds to dream of, including friand, mini madeleines and, of the moment, donut tins.
A range of cast iron cookware made in France by Staub comes in red, orange, black, grey, and blue. It’s a lifetime gift to yourself or a friend and its strength and beauty goes from stove to table. You can braise, roast, cook, stew or fry with the range, in-oven or on the stove top with the frying pans, rib grills and mussel pots. The cocottes are round and oval, and the divine pumpkin and tomato shaped casseroles will redefine your batterie de cuisine goals forever.
Are you picturing a warm candlelit scene, the table alive with family and friends, good conversation and wine set off with a tasty display of tapas and sharing plates? At Total Food Equipment, the ranges available mean you’ll find a set to match your flair and flavours.

Total Food EquipmentThere is the versatile and ever-stylish cast iron option: small dishes in different sizes and in round and oval. Or bring colourful artisan élan to your table with the Regas range, made in Spain since 1821 from high quality fire proof terracotta clay. The cazuela is one of the oldest cooking vessels, used since pre-Roman times and still in use today in every Spanish kitchen.
It is used as a frying pan over direct heat on the hob, an open fire or barbeque. It is also oven-proof and makes a great baker and roasting dish for sweet or savoury. The organic nature of terracotta adds flavour to the food and the dishes go from oven to table. Choose from round, oval, rectangle, bowls and handled bowls, there is a choice of exterior colours too.
If the lashing rain and wind outside means mulled wine to you, take yours to the next level with The Herb and Spice Mill sachets of all-natural ingredients. The range of food safe presentation dishes of all types is huge at Total Food Equipment, so make it your first stop for themed parties or catering this winter too. Total Food Equipment is at 218 Moorhouse Avenue, with parking outside the door.

Everhot at Classic Cookers

Culinary energy efficiency: you need to check out Everhot’s beautiful cookers at Classic Cookers

Crafted in a fashion from days of old, where quality and longevity go hand in hand, Everhot embraces the future, with cookers that are energy efficient and suitable for solar power generation.

Everhot at Classic Cookers

Manufactured in Gloucestershire, England, Everhot is a heat storage range cooker. It steadily transfers the heat from its core into its ovens and hotplates, meeting all your cooking needs with exceptional energy efficiency.
The ability to run any part of your cooker independently means total control and the timed grill means no more burnt offerings.
The sky is the limit with Everhot – slow cooking, baking, roasting, grill or pan and you can do all of those things at once on one range. The smallest Everhot features two ovens and a graduated cast iron hob top. As the size increases, so too do your options. Ovens, plate warmer, induction hobs and simmer plates become opportunities to customise your cooker – and customise in every sense, with each cooker crafted by hand for your order. Colour, size and ovens are among the options to ponder.
Everhot ticks the boxes for quality, control, energy efficient, style and function. The difficult choice is often the colour and with a palette of 14, you can be forgiven for taking your time to decide.
If you are looking to make a statement in your kitchen, enjoy a trip to the country and visit Classic Cookers at 151 Bramleys Road Flaxton, phone
03-310 6534 or check out

Total Food Equipment

Culinary mastery: the experts at Total Food Equipment keep us current in the kitchen

You can always count on Total Food Equipment (aka tfe) to be at the forefront of changes in thinking about homewares, cooking and kitchen accessories.

Total Food Equipment

Total Food Equipment
New and efficient equipment to help create culinary masterpieces

We have been hearing a great deal about the amount of plastic that is finding its way into our planet’s oceans and about how we should reduce our use of the material. Total Food Equipment is definitely fighting the good fight on this environmental
issue. The store stocks multi-
coloured stainless eco-friendly
water bottles for hydration, along with stainless straws and reusable eco coffee cups. Look on another shelf and you will find bio-degradable storage bags, paper snack and sandwich bags and reusable paper towels. One roll of these replaces 18 rolls of conventional paper towels! No cling wrap or plastic bags in sight here. Tfe also has compact under-bench composting bins for saving food scraps and eliminating wastage.
But tfe is forward thinking in other ways as well, constantly searching suppliers and manufacturers for new and more
efficient equipment to help cooks create their culinary
masterpieces. Recently arrived in store is the MasterPro Sous Vide Precision Cooker. ‘Sous vide’ is French for ‘under vacuum’ and the method uses sealed pouches to cook vegetables, fish, poultry, red meat and more in a water bath, achieving succulent, nutritious and flavorsome results. The technique has been used by chefs for decades to lock in natural juices creating food that is evenly cooked from edge to edge. With the MasterPro Sous Vide Cooker we can all achieve chef level perfection.
Another new arrival at tfe is the MasterPro 12 in 1 stainless steel multi-cooker pressure cooker. This clever machine can take over all your cooking tasks and certainly help you to declutter your cupboards of pots and pans. The multi- cooker features six cooking functions (slow cook, sous vide, sauté, steam, yoghurt, pasta) and six pressure (rice, meat/poultry, bean/chilli, soup/porridge, canning,
potato) . There is also a ‘keep warm’ setting and a countdown timer so food is ready when you need it and an easy lock function keeps your pressure cooking safe. The MasterPro Multi Cooker makes
creating a wide range of hearty meals easier than ever.
Total Food Equipment is situated at 218 Moorhouse Avenue in the Mid-Way Moorhouse complex. The store is open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm and Saturday to Sunday 10am to 4pm and there is easy access with plenty of parking. Don’t forget the store’s wedding register programme while the wedding season is still with us.