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Traditional homecoming food

Whenever members of the overseas family return home, we make an effort to cook some traditional New Zealand food for them – particular the American or Malaysian branches of the family. So it was time to roast some lamb, and bake a pavlova. I make this meal only about once a year, sometimes even less often than that, so I’m not an expert. Which showed when I tried a pavlova recipe one of my sisters swears by, and the other one says she has had no success with. Sadly, I joined my second sister in failure, and had to resort to making a second (actually, if I’m honest, a third) pavlova using a more traditional recipe, which was a success. Whipped cream and ripe strawberries cover any pavlova sins!

The visitor bought a good bottle of red wine, I roasted some kumara (sweet potato) and carrot and pumpkin, made gravy, and the brothers bought some mint sauce at the supermarket. We set the table, lighting the candle my sister-in-law had sent from California, using a decanter from another sister-in-law, and ate the dessert on the brothers’ great-grandmother’s plates that came all the way from Poland. We even refrained from talking about contentious issues! It was a delight.


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