List Posts


All Harvest Hub Posts


Under following Headings:

1. Events & Activites

2. Farmers

3. Fundraising

4. Industry News

5. Cooking Tips

6. Storage & Ripening

7. Foods good for us

8. Health Issues

9. Farmers – Local & Australian

10. Sustainability

11. Grocery

12. Fruit

13. Vegetables


1. Events & Activites

Dine Below The Line

Dine Below the Line at Macquarie Uni

Youth make $2 a head meals with heaps left over

Dining Not Mining Forum

Dining Not Mining

FOOD FIGHT – the Battle for food Security

Fruit & Veg Month Celebration

Happy 5th Birthday Harvest Hub

Harvest Hub Become Social

Manly Vale Community Garden OPEN DAY

Market at Macquarie University- Social Enterprise

Metella Road Public School Harvest Hub went off with a Bang

National Nutrition Week at Harvest Hub

Right To Food Coalition

Salvos Ivanhoe

Think, Eat, Save    Fruit & Veg Month

2. Farmers

Do we value our food and those who grow it?

Me Farms – a Local farm

Peats Ridge Money-for-Jam project

Why we buy local and from small Australian farmers

Raymond’s Ruined Purple Kale…

3. Fundraising

Help in a small way at Christmas 2014 – Ivanhoe lunch & toys for the kids

Salvos Invanhoe

Watermelon Fundraiser – Video

4. Industry News

A Voluntary Code of Practice for Supermarkets?

Banana Growers – what happens when a storm hits

Loss Leaders. Why do supermarkets have them?

No Harvest Hub rockmelons linked to Salmonella outbreak

Supermarkets stubbornly stick to their specials

Support Local Bee Producers?

The Future of Sydney’s Food Bowl

Water precious water

5. Cooking Tips

How does your food look on the plate?

Stir Fry – 10 easy tricks

6. Storage & Ripening 

Harvest Hub – What We Mean when We Say, Fresh

Not perfect but tasty

Vegetables Breathe Too!

Wombok – herbs that wilt what to do?

7. Foods good for us

All things Red

Psyllium husks: Beautiful on the Inside

8. Health Issues

A Tale of Two Worlds – Body Mass Index

Close the Gap – Indigenous health outcomes.

Diabetes a hotspot in Western Sydney

Glycemic ‘load’ not glycemic ‘index’

Want to decrease the risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s?

What is a serve of fruit & vegetables?

9. Farmers – Local & Australian


Grima Brothers in Horsley Park

Growers in Sydney Food Bowl  WEEK 1632

Kim Family from Wallacia

Me Farms a local farm

ME Farm baby salad leaves  

Where Does My Food Come From? Week 1539

Week 1550 Where Come From?

10. Sustainability

How to make a Herb Pouch

Insect Hotel

Plastic Free

Sustainability Festival

11. Grocery

Bread new additions Shepherd’s Bakery

Sourdough Bread

Hidden Valley Eggs

Hidden Valley Pasture Raised

Sustainable chicken farming – Our Free range egg story

Hidden Valley Honey

Organic Honey – Delucas from Wollemi National Park

You’ll always remember – ‘Forgotten Ridge Honey’

Lose weight with Grapefruit Juice

Go Nuts about living longer


Roast your own nuts

Absolute Organic Non-Hydrogenated Extra Virgin Coconut Oil

Paella – Bush Tucker at it’s best


Coooeeee   Anzac cooking

Christmas recipes

Harvest Hub fun Hors d’oeuvres

The Impromptu Festive Season Party

12. Fruit


Golden Delicious Apple Bundt Cake Recipe

Granny Smith are Australian

Pink Lady versus Sundowner


Bananas spotted and brown



Cherries new season


Lose weight with Grapefruit Juice

Ruby Grapefruit


Guava – Hey! Full of antioxdiants




Ortanique Mandarins


Mango ripening – don’t judge a mango by its colour

Mango – Honey Gold


Blood Oranges

Blood Orange Warm Salad  recipeBlood Oranges


How Green is my papaya?


Passionfruit on Easter weekend


Pears Beurre Bosc and Packham

Prickly Pear


Persimmon like an apple


Pomegranate – Health Benefits





Rhubarb Recipes


Black Sapote – the chocolate pudding fruit




Champagne Watermelon

13. Vegetables






Avocado Planted


Broad Beans

Broad Beans Preparation

Snake Beans


Beet-i-ful beetroot recipes

Beetroot Sauces

Golden Beetroot

Hot Weather; Cold Borscht – Golden Beetroot 

Target Beets



Broccoli – the Super Veg!

Super local broccoli


Brussel Sprouts


Homemade Sauerkraut

Pineapple & Red Cabbage Recipes

Red Cabbage Recipes

Savoy Cabbage

Savoy Cabbage Preparation

Wombok Easy Cooking


Red Capsicum with Basil Couscous



Rainbow carrots

Rainbow Carrots Horsley Park

White carrots

Carrots coloured


Cauliflower by the moon

Cauliflower Leaves & Stems

Cauliflower Risotto

Romanesco cauliflower

Romanesco cauliflower recipes




Sweet Banana Chillies

Chillies – long reds

Harvest Hub – Homemade Caramelised Chilli Jam


Baby Buk Choi

Buk Choi

Choi Sum Damaged


Choko with Goodness


Corn from Freeman’s Reach

Corn – Polka Dot


Eggplant Freeman’s Reach

Mini eggplant





Fennel from Oberon






Garlic – Fresh & local

Garlic Recipes




Much Ado about Mushrooms – mushroom stars as a main ingredient


Seafood Packs

Thai Cooking Pack



Purple Basil


Parsley Continental


Tumeric Organic Fresh Roots


Curly Kale has a tale

Kale – an amazing tale

Kale Recipes

Kale and how to store it

Russian Kale

Tuscan Kale


Leafy Greens – Coriander, English spinach and Baby buk choi



Baby leek

Forgotten Leek

Leek Planted


Lettuce Mix – Mesculun



Green Olives from Narrabri


Shallots versus spring onions

Sweet Onions




Sugar Snaps


Dutch Cream Potatoes

Mayflower Brushed Potatoes

Royal Blue Potato Mash

Sebago – Goldilocks spuds – just right!



Diakon Radish

French Radish



Celeriac – worth the wait!


White Kohlrahbi

Kohlrabi chips

Kohlrabi recipes

Kohlrabi – eat it all






Chard (Silverbeet) Rainbow Chard from ME Farms

Cold night – roast vegetables

Red Chard Recipes

Rainbow Chard


English Spinach


Squash Ozzie


Cherry Tomatoes

Cooking tomatoes local

Golden & Black Russian Baby Truss

Tomato an antioxidant

Cooking Tomatoes buy fresh local same price as imported


Rapa – Sweet Italian Rapa

Swede or Rutabaga


Baby turnips…a cunning plan indeed!





Wombok Easy Cooking

Wombok around the clock – Eating Raw


Patriot Zucchini

Zucchini Flowers

Meal Packs

Seafood Packs


Farm Recipes 1738

Farm Recipes 1724

Farm Recipes 1722

Farm Recipes 1721

Farm Recipes 1720

Farm Recipes 1719

Farm Recipes 1718

Farm Recipes 1717

Farm Recipes 1716



What calories?

Did you know that small reductions in calories can lead to significant improvements in a range of health markers, even among people within a normal weight range.

How small?

Fewer than 300 calories a day.

What happens if you do that?

A significant reduction in bad cholesterol (LDL) and improvements in good cholesterol (HDL), a reduction in blood pressure and increased insulin sensitivity – meaning that the body was better able to convert blood sugars into energy, rather than storing it as fat.

So what foods have what calories?

Spaghetti Squash: the low carb pasta alternative

Spaghetti Squash and is one of the more intriguing vegetables. It’s related to squash and pumpkins, but when cooked, you can run your fork through the flesh which will turn it into a spaghetti-like consistency.  Above all, it’s sweet and creamy – and can be used as a pasta substitute. It contains fewer calories, is lower in carbs but high in protein and fibre.

We come across it from time to time, but it’s rather pricey (easily $6-7 each).  However, Steve and Sam Grima have just picked a test patch (probably one of the few things they’re picking lately, thanks to the heat!) and we can offer them for $4.75 each.  They weight about 1.5kg, and easily produce enough ‘spaghetti’ for a single meal.

The easiest way to cook Spaghetti Squash:

  • Cut off the top and bottom ends
  • Slice it length-wise and scoop out the seeds
  • Sprinkle with olive oil, salt and pepper – and rub it evenly into the flesh
  • Put them upside down on baking paper in an oven tray, and bake for 40-60 minutes in the oven pre-heated at 190 C
  • They’re done when the bottom is golden brown, and you can pierce the skin with a fork
  • Remove from the oven, put them the right side up and fluff the inside with a fork until it looks like Spaghetti. Kids love doing this!

Banana Recipes

Banana Recipes

If you buy Harvest Hub smoothie bananas you know that looks aren’t everything as marked skins do not affect the flavour of these nanas and we’re all about flavour.  On special this week $2.99. Not perfect on the outside but delicious on the inside.

Fruit and vegetable skin, like our skin, protects what’s on the inside. A mark or two won’t affect eating quality and will mean less waste from grower to plate.  Like that book you can’t judge by its cover, or the saying, ‘Beauty comes from within’. Not perfect but tasty. Perhaps the goodness judgement is: flavour and texture over appearance.

Freeze bananas – You can freeze bananas but peel first, then into a zip lock or container.

  • Banana Yoghurt Smoothie
  • Nutty Banana Smoothie
  • Banana Slice
  • Nancy’s Banana Bread
  • Banana Cookies

Banana Yoghurt Smoothie

Banana Yoghurt Smoothie
Recipe Type: Drink
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 1
  • 2 cups skim milk
  • 2 bananas, roughly chopped
  • ½ natural yogurt
  • 1 tbs honey
  • ½ tbs cinnamon
  • Ice cubes
  1. Blend all ingredients till creamy and serve immediately.

Nutty Banana Smoothie

Nutty Banana Smoothie
Recipe Type: Drink
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 1
  • 1 banana, cut into pieces
  • 1/4 cup walnuts, pistachio nuts or cashew nuts
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup natural yoghurt
  • 1/2 cup ice-cubes
  1. Blend all ingredients till creamy and serve immediately.

Banana Slice

Banana Slice
Recipe Type: Cake
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 4
  • 1/2 cup self raising flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/8 tsp of bi-carb soda
  • 1/4 cup of milk
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 cup caster sugar
  • 30g butter
  • 1/3 cup mashed banana
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Sift dry ingredients then melt butter. Mix the egg, milk, butter and banana and stir into the dry ingredients.
  3. Grease a lamington pan and bake for 20-25 minutes in oven. Sprinkle with cinnamon.

Nancy’s Banana Bread

Nancy’s Banana Bread
Recipe Type: Cake
Author: Harvest Hub
Special Notes: This Banana bread will keep in an airtight container out of direct sunlight for up to 3 days. Alternatively, place in airtight container, then label, date and freeze for up to 1 month. Place in fridge overnight to thaw.
  • 1 ¾ cups self-raising flour
  • ¼ cup plain flour
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2/3 cup, firmly packed brown sugar
  • ½ cup reduced fat milk
  • 2 eggs, lightly whisked
  • 50g butter, melted, cooled
  • 2 overripe medium bananas, mashed
  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. Brush an 11x21cm (base Measurement) loaf pan with melted dairy spread to lightly grease. Line the base and 2 opposite sides with non-stick baking paper, allowing it to overhang.
  3. Sift the combined flours and cinnamon into a large bowl. Stir in the sugar and make a well in the centre. Place the milk, eggs, melted butter and banana in a medium bowl, and stir until just combined. Add the banana in a medium bowl, and stir until just combined. Spoon the mixture into prepared pan and smooth the surface.
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 45-50mins or until skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Remove from the oven and set aside in the pan for 5 minutes. Turn onto wire rack to cool completely. Cut into slices to serves.

Banana Cookies

Banana Cookies
Recipe Type: Biscuits
Author: Harvest Hub
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  1. Preheat oven to 180ºC.
  2. Using electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and creamy.
  3. Add in eggs and vanilla and beat until well combined.
  4. Add in bananas, flour, baking soda and salt. Stir until just combined.
  5. Drop a tablespoon of dough per cookie 2 inches apart onto cookie sheet.
  6. Bake for about 12-14 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool.








Chinese Broccoli

Chinese Broccoli – Gai Lan

Chinese Broccoli Gai Lan

Chinese broccoli from Amy in Quakers Hill – she’s had to take a 3 months break to recover from a freak storm in November which almost wiped out her entire crop of Chinese veg and herbs.

With Chinese Broccoli eat the stem as well.

  • Chinese broccoli with fresh fish slices
  • Chinese Broccoli Slaw Salad
  • Gail Lan with spaghetti or egg noodles – beef added

Chinese broccoli with fresh fish slices

Chinese broccoli with fresh fish slices
Recipe Type: Stir Fry
Cuisine: Chinese
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 4
  • 300g Chinese broccoli
  • 200g white meat fish such as mullet, sea bass, cod.
  • 1 tsp garlic, chopped
  • 1 tbs ginger, shredded
  • 2 tbs water
  • 2 tbs cornstarch
  • Coconut oil
  • [b]Fish marinade:[/b]
  • 1 tsp oyster sauce
  • 1 tsp light soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp sesame seed oil
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp corn flour
  • [b]Seasonings:[/b]
  • 1/2 tbs oyster sauce
  • 1/2 tbs light soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp sesame seed oil
  1. Wash the Chinese broccoli and remove the leaves from the main stalks. Cut the leaves in half or thirds depending on its length. Peel the stalks if the outer skin is tough and cut into similar lengths as the leaves. Bring a pot of water to a boil with some sugar and cooking oil
  2. Blanch the Chinese broccoli for a minute or 2 before removing and rinsing it under running water. Wash the fish and slice them. Marinate them with the fish marinate with corn flour added last. Combine the seasonings together.
  3. Heat 1 tbs coconut oil in a wok and gently fry the garlic and ginger. Add the Chinese broccoli, water and seasonings and stir fry quickly Add the fish slices and let it cook for a few minutes. Thicken the dish with the cornstarch. Serve.

Chinese Broccoli Slaw Salad

Chinese Broccoli Slaw Salad
Recipe Type: Salad
Cuisine: Chinese
Author: Harvest Hub
  • 3 broccoli, finely cut including leaves (coleslaw)
  • 1 cup slivered almond
  • 1 cup roasted sunflower seeds
  • 2 packages crushed ramen noodles (uncooked- chicken or original)
  • 1 -2 bunch shallots(chopped)
  • [b]To make dressing:[/b]
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 3/4 cup oil
  1. Mix all dry ingredients (except sugar) together, sprinkle with Ramin seasoning. Then mix dressing ingredients, add to salad and mix well. Can be served right away or chilled. If you wish broccoli to be slightly cooked steam then cool.

Gail Lan with spaghetti or egg noodles – beef added

Gail Lan with spaghetti or egg noodles – beef added
Recipe Type: Stir Fry
Cuisine: Chinese
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 4
  • 1 pkt Angel hair spaghetti or egg noodles
  • 1 Chinese broccoli/Gai-lan about 5 sprigs, sliced
  • 1 cup tomatoes, cubed
  • ½ cup carrot, sliced
  • 1 -2 onion, cubed
  • 1 capsicum, sliced
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 1 tbs butter
  • 2 tbs grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • ½ tbs Italian seasoning
  • 2 ½ tsp salt
  • [b]Beef added:[/b]
  • 400g sirloin or rump, thinly sliced
  • 3 tbs soy sauce
  • 3 tbs oyster sauce
  • 3 tbs Shaoxing wine, sake, dry white wine, or sherry
  • 1 tbs sugar
  • 1 tbs tapioca starch or cornstarch
  • 1 tsp dark sesame oil
  1. In a sauce pan add 6 cups of water and bring to boil, when starts boiling add salt and angel hair spaghetti and cook for 4 minutes or until cooked al dente. Drain in a colander and set aside.
  2. In a wok add butter/olive oil and add chopped onion fry for about 3 minutes then add chopped capsicum, carrot and cook for about 6 minutes, moving it around the wok. Add the finely sliced stalks of the Chinese broccoli and stir through for another 3 minutes then add the leaves and wilt for a further 3 minutes. Introduce the seasoning – Italian seasoning, red chilli flakes and tomato cook for about 3 minutes.
  3. Combine cooked spaghetti into the vegetable mixture to combine well. Remove from the fire and when you are ready to serve add Parmesan cheese.
  4. Beef added:
  5. In a medium bowl, whisk together soy sauce, oyster sauce and rice wine. Add the sugar (the sugar and the oyster sauce will help the meat caramelize) and continue to whisk until completely dissolved. Stir in the tapioca starch and continue stirring until smooth. Add the sesame oil and beef, and mix well.
  6. First marinate the beef slices in soy sauce mix for 20 minutes.
  7. To cook heat up wok, add oil and place meat in single layer to cook. To caramelize the meat place it and let one side cook then turn. Do not flip the meat over and over. Set aside when cooked and add to the Gai Lan before serving or serve separately.




Sweet watermelon

Sweet Watermelon

Watermelon sweet near Grafton Northern Rivers

What could be better on a hot day than 5kg of delicious watermelon? Grown in the lush area of the Northern Rivers, near Grafton NSW,  and a bit bigger than normal. Whilst these are seedless they are grown from seeds. The seeds are produced by seed crossing – diploid with tetaploid lines of watermelon and this produces sterile triploid plants which are seedless of course. This hot weather is absolutely the best for creating sweeter flesh.


When using watermelon in cooking think only that it can be added to many things. Like: add to skewers (great with haloumi and feta), to salads, last topping for stir-fry, add to the plate with any meat or fish dish. It creates colour and that little flash of sweetness.

For some holidays are here so you’ll have a bit of time and if you have kids, or a kid at heart, then these recipes are fun to do.

  • Watermelon Dippers
  • Watermelon Smoothie

Watermelon Dippers

Watermelon Dippers
Recipe Type: Dip
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 4
This Fresh Dip with a Hint of Sweetness Makes a Treat Kids Will Love
  • 225g sour cream
  • 4 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • watermelon sticks or small wedges
  1. Blend together the sour cream, sugar and vanilla in a small serving bowl.
  2. Use as a dip for the watermelon.

Watermelon Smoothie


Watermelon Smoothie
Recipe Type: Drink
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 4
  • 2 cups seeded watermelon chunks
  • 1 cup cracked ice
  • ½ cup plain yogurt
  • 1-2 tbsp sugar
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • 1/8 tsp almond extract
  1. Combine all ingredients in blender container. Blend until smooth.



Watermelon recipes

Watermelon Recipes

Here is a creative idea for watermelon a Birthday Cake from Frances in South Turramurra

Birthday cake watermelon from Frances South Turramurra

Recipes for watermelon

  • Watermelon Dippers a treat for kids
  • Watermelon & Prosciutto Salad with Honey Vinaigrette
  • Watermelon, Basil, & Mozzarella Salad with Balsamic Syrup
  • Watermelon Smoothie

Watermelon Dippers


Watermelon Dippers
Recipe Type: Snack
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 4
This Fresh Dip with a Hint of Sweetness Makes a Treat Kids Will Love
  • 225g sour cream
  • 4 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • watermelon sticks or small wedges
  1. Blend together the sour cream, sugar and vanilla in a small serving bowl.
  2. Use as a dip for the watermelon.

Watermelon & Prosciutto Salad with Honey Vinaigrette

Watermelon & Prosciutto Salad with Honey Vinaigrette
Recipe Type: Salad
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 4
  • 3 cups cubed watermelon
  • 1/4 pound prosciutto, sliced very thin and cut into strips
  • 115g goat cheese or Feta, crumbled
  • 3 tbs honey
  • 2 tbs Champagne vinegar or white vinegar
  • 1 tbs canola oil or other neutral flavoured vegetable oil
  • salt and pepper
  1. In a large bowl, toss together the watermelon, prosciutto, and cheese. Place individual servings onto chilled salad plates.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the honey, vinegar, and oil. Drizzle a tablespoon or two over each salad serving. Sprinkle a little salt and pepper on top of each salad.

Watermelon, Basil, & Mozzarella Salad with Balsamic Syrup


Watermelon, Basil, & Mozzarella Salad with Balsamic Syrup
Recipe Type: Salad
Author: Harvest Hub
  • 4 cups watermelon cubes
  • 500gms fresh mozzarella balls
  • 2 tbs fresh basil, minced
  • 2 cups balsamic vinegar
  • salt and pepper
  1. In a small pot, bring the balsamic vinegar to a boil. Continue to boil until it has reduced to about 1/2 cup and has a syrup like consistency. Set aside and allow to completely cool. If you have time, you can make the balsamic syrup ahead of time and refrigerate it for later.
  2. In a large bowl, gently toss together the watermelon, basil, and mozzarella. If you are using the larger size mozzarella balls, first cut them into bite-size pieces.
  3. Put servings of the salad onto chilled plates. Drizzle with the balsamic syrup. Sprinkle a little salt and pepper on top of each salad.


Watermelon Smoothie

Watermelon Smoothie
Recipe Type: Smoothie
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 4
  • 2 cups seeded watermelon chunks
  • 1 cup cracked ice
  • ½ cup plain yogurt
  • 1-2 tbsp sugar
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • 1/8 tsp almond extract
  1. Combine all ingredients in blender container. Blend until smooth.








Dry as a bone

Dry as a bone

The Bureau of Meteorology has just declared an El Nino on the Eastern seaboard of Australia this Spring  Read more on this….. Well it seems that this has already started with the added knock on of climate change. In Wherrol Flat the old timers are seeing definite changes that have increased in just the past few years – ie less rainfall, more fires.

To read more what causes El Nino see this information….

So our local growers in August 2018 have been showing us their crops and what the dry has done to them. Without water many are having to turn to town water. One grower tells us this means he will get a quarterly bill for $6,000 from using town water on his crops. Others lucky enough to be located on rivers are on restrictions for pumping water. Often barely enough to water their crops properly.

Cherry tomatoes Aug 2018


So we know the cherry tomato.









Pictures are more powerful than words so take a look at what the growers of our food are facing. These were taken in Horsley Park, Sydney.

Cherry tomatoes dried stands Aug 2018Cherry tomatoes dried Aug 2018Cherry tomato rows



Avocadoes from Comboyne

Avocadoes from Comboyne

Ron the grower talking with Anton

Ron the grower talking with Anton

Avocadoes like well drained soil and there is a higher altitude are north of Sydney, north of Taree known as Comboyne. The town is small and quaint and if you drive through a wonderful Cafe to have lunch.

Ron avocadoGrower Ron Lindsay is following a passion with growing his avocado trees whilst renovating a former cheese making warehouse into his home, cafe and maybe a home brew …… mmm have to say their guacomole was dynamite, extra garlic, would go great with a home brew beer…of things to come.

So we thought you  might like to see where your avocadoes are grown.

Where is Comboyne?

Where is Comboyne















Three photos showing country avocadoes are grown in and the trees.

Avocado trees Aug





Ron Avocado country ComboyneRon avocado tree

























The Birds’ Wherrol Flat mandies

The Birds’ Wherrol Flat mandies


Graeme and Rozann Bird live a few clicks down Little Run Rd – and have been for some 30 years.  Rozann makes a mean homebrew craft beer.  After winning the local beer-making competition 2 years in a row, she’s holding back a bit to give the other talents in the valley a chance to shine.


Mandarin farm in Wherrol Flat

A few years ago, they planted some 30-odd mandarin trees.  Nothing unusual about that, as almost everyone in Wherrol Flat grows some citrus or kiwi or passionfruit or pumpkin or… well anything, really.  Because that seems to be the nature of the place: anything you throw into the soil seems to grow and thrive.

Graeme picking mandarins in Wherrol Flat

It’s just that the Birds’ mandies have this je ne sais qua – sweetness with a hint of mint, and some spice, and a whole lot of other flavours that are difficult to place – but they combine to give it a beautiful flavour.  It’s in the soil, the air or the water.  Or perhaps in all 3.



Mandarins in Wherrol FlatThey managed to pick about 150kg of ripe fruit, so we just hope that will last us till the end of the week.  Luckily, we’re making another commute next weekand the sunny weather holds promise for more mandies.

Parramatta Grass & Parra Trouper

Parramatta Grass

Parramatta Grass & Parra Trouper

Parramatta Grass has hit our farm area near Wingham and it is growing everywhere so native grassses can’t grow. It also makes it difficult to lay beds down for permaculture.

Video explaining Nigroospoea oryzae Parra Trouper an organic week control.

The use of Parra Trouper is a natural way to create crown rot in the Parramatta Grass.

It’s important for us to use non-industrialised chemicals so the organic option, whilst takes longer, is more beneficial overall.

read more about the people who discovered the Parra Trouper. Jeremy Bradley and Cathy Egger, of Hastings, took research by David Officer of the NSW Department of Primary Industries and commercialised it ….

Jap Pumpkin

Green pumpkin with a slice on white background

Jap Pumpkin


  • Baked Jap pumpkin croquettes
  • Pumpkin Casserole
  • Thai pumpkin soup
  • Pumpkin Scones


Baked Jap pumpkin croquettes

Baked Jap pumpkin croquettes
Recipe Type: snack
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 12
  • 1 1/2 cups flour plus more for dusting
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 cup pureed pumpkin
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 tbs soy sauce
  • 1/2 sheet dried nori seaweed, snipped into 3cm strips
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 1 tsp olive oil plus more for greasing baking sheet
  • 1/8 cup toasted sesame seeds
  • 1/2 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
  1. Preheat oven 190C. Lightly grease a baking sheet with olive oil.
  2. Heat olive oil in a medium frying pan over medium heat. Cook onions for 3-4 minutes, or until translucent. Remove from heat.
  3. In a mixing bowl, combine flour and baking powder. Stir in pumpkin, egg, soy sauce, onions and nori. Mix with a wooden spoon or spatula until a sticky dough forms. If the dough is too moist, add a bit more flour. On a clean, dry plate, combine the sesame seeds and the panko. Mix well with fingers. Set aside. Use floured hands to form the dough into balls that are about 2” in diameter. Roll each ball in the panko-sesame seed mixture, and place on the greased baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown. Serve warm.


Pumpkin Casserole

Pumpkin Casserole
Recipe Type: Casserole
Author: Harvest Hub
  • 2 tbs olive oil
  • 4 chicken thighs, trimmed and diced into large chunks
  • 3 tbs of plain flour
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp of tarragon, dried
  • 1 litre chicken stock
  • 2 carrots, baton cut
  • 2 celery sticks, sliced
  • 3 cups of pumpkin peeled and diced
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Note this recipe is good in a Slow Cooker and will take 2 hours.
  3. Toss the chicken with flour in a ziplock bag. In a frypan, heat the olive oil and brown the chicken. Add the crushed garlic and cook for a minute. Add the taragon and apple cider vingear, using it to deglaze the pan (lifting the bits off pan as they are full of flavour). Add the carrots, celery, pumpkin and stock. Bring to the boil and pour into a casserole dish.
  4. Bake for 1 1/2 hrs.


Thai pumpkin soup

Thai pumpkin soup
Recipe Type: Soup
Author: Harvest Hub
  • 1.5kg Kent (jap) pumpkin
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 2 tbs green curry paste
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 carrot, sliced
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1/2 cup light coconut cream
  1. Peel the pumpkin, remove seeds and cut into large cubes. Heat oil in large saucepan and fry the curry paste for a few minutes. Add the onion and cook to soften slightly.
  2. Add the pumpkin, carrot and stock, bring to the boil and cook for 15 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender. Puree. Add the coconut cream and stir through.
  3. Serve.


Pumpkin Scones

Pumpkin Scones
Recipe Type: Dessert
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 12-15
  • 60g butter
  • 2 tbs castor sugar
  • ½ cup cooked and mashed pumpkin
  • 1 egg lightly beaten
  • ½ cup milk
  • 2 ½ cups self raising flour
  • 1 tbs milk
  • 1 egg yolk
  1. Preheat oven to 230 C.
  2. Cream butter and sugar. Mix in pumpkin and is better if the pumpkin is cooled. Slowly mix in the milk and egg. Sift flour and stir into the mixture and stir into the dough.
  3. Lightly knead and roll out 2-3cm thick on a lightly floured surface. Use a scone cutter dipped in flour to cut out scones. Roll out any scrapes of dough and cut more scones until no dough is left. Place on a baking tray.
  4. Brush scones with milk and egg yolk. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.


Cauliflower recipes for winter

Cauliflower white in paddock

Cauliflower recipes for winter

  1. Moroccan Cauliflower – a big recipe

  2. Broccoli Cauliflower Soup

  3. Cauliflower Biryani

  4. Winter Vegetables in Cashew Gravy

Moroccan Cauliflower

Moroccan Cauliflower
Recipe Type: Casserole
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 4
  • 700gms lamb, cut into 5cm pieces
  • 1 tomato, finely chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • handful of Curly parsley, chopped
  • handful of fresh cilantro (coriander), chopped
  • 1 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 cup olive oil extra virgin cold pressed (Harvest Hub)
  • 1 large head of cauliflower, florets
  • 1 lemon, quartered and seeds removed
  • 1 large handful of Kalamata olives
  • 1 to 2 tbs lemon juice
  • three cups of water
  1. In a large pot place the meat, grated tomato, onions, garlic, olive oil, parsley, cilantro, and spices and mix. Cook over medium-high heat no lid for 10 minutes turning the meat and brown it on all sides.
  2. Then add three cups of water, cover the pressure cooker or pot, and increase the heat to high. You can use a pressure cooker: When pressure has been achieved, reduce the heat to medium and cook for 35 minutes. If using a pot: When boiling reduce heat and simmer for about 1 1/2 hours, or until the meat is tender. Check adding water if necessary.
  3. When the meat has cooked, add the cauliflower, lemon, olives and lemon juice. Add water so cauliflower is partially covered cooking a further 20 minutes. Serve with couscous.

Broccoli Cauliflower Soup

Broccoli Caulifower Soup
Recipe Type: Soup
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 4
  • 1 tbs butter or olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 1 -2 heads broccoli and cauliflower florets (about 4 cups)
  • 1 medium baking potato, peeled and chopped
  • 4 to 5 cups chicken stock, vegetable stock or water
  • 1/4 to 1 cup cream
  • Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish if desired
  1. Put the butter in a large, deep saucepan set over medium heat. When the butter has melted, add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is soft, about 5 minutes. Add the broccoli, cauliflower, potato and stock. Bring the mixture to a boil then reduce the heat and simmer gently until the vegetables are tender, 10 to 15 minutes and stir occasionally. Cool then puree in batches in food processor until smooth.
  2. Rinse saucepan and then add the soup back to the pan set over low to medium low heat. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in the cream, if desired, and heat gently.

Cauliflower Biryani

Cauliflower Biryani
Recipe Type: Rice
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 4-6
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cardomom pods
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 1 tsp Ginger Garlic Paste (see Cauliflower and Potato with spices)
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped or canned
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • ½ tsp garam masala (see Cauliflower and Potato with spices)
  • 1 potato, peeled and diced
  • 1 carrot, peeled and diced
  • 8-10 cauliflower florets
  • ½ cup green beans (can be frozen)
  • 2 tbs peas
  • 2 tbs ground almonds, mixed with a little water
  • 3 cups water
  • 1 ½ cups long grain or basmati rice
  • Salt to taste
  1. In a saucepan heat the oil and put in cummin seeds which need to sizzle then add onion and sauté for 5 minutes. Add bay leaves, cardamom, cinnamon stick and Ginger garlic paste then add tomatoes and cook a further 2 minutes. Add turmeric, cayenne, pepper, garam masala, the vegetables, salt and almonds. Stir through. Add water and bring to boil.
  2. Stir in the rice and cover. Reduce the heat to medium and cook 10 minutes until water is absorbed. Turn off heat, cover and steam another 5 minutes. Serve.

Winter Vegetables in Cashew Gravy

Winter Vegetables in Cashew Gravy
Recipe Type: Vegetable
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 4-6
  • [b]Vegetables:[/b]
  • 1 cauliflower, cut into florets
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 broccoli, diced
  • 2 potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup green beans, diced (can be frozen if no more fresh ones left)
  • 2/3 cup peas
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp Ginger Garlic paste (see recipe below)
  • 4 tomatoes, chopped (can be canned)
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp castor sugar
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • [b]For Cashew Paste:[/b]
  • 3 tbs cashew nuts
  • 2 tbs coriander seeds
  • 2 tsp cumin seeds
  • 3-4 cloves
  • ½ tsp black peppercorns
  • 1 green chilli
  • 1 cup coriander leaves
  • ¼ cup spearmint leaves
  • [b]For Garlic Ginger Paste:[/b]
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 ginger, walnut size, peeled
  1. Boil or steam vegetables.
  2. To make Cashew paste:
  3. In a pan dry roast cashews on low heat then add coriander seeds, cumin, cloves, peppercorns. Then use food processor and blend to a smooth paste. Add chilli, coriander leaves, spearmint leaves with a little water.
  4. To make Ginger paste:
  5. In a food processor blend garlic and ginger to a smooth paste. Add a few drops of water. Keep in a sealed container in the fridge. Keeps 1 week.
  6. [b]COMBINE:[/b]
  7. In a large saucepan heat the oil and sauté the onion until soft then mix in Ginger Garlic paste and sauté a further 1 minute. Add tomatoes, turmeric, and salt. Cover the pan then cook for a further 2-3minutes. Add the Cashew paste and 1 cup of water. Bring to a simmer. Add the sugar and lemon juice and toss in the vegetables. Bring to the boil then turn down to simmer. Cook 5 minutes. Serve with rice.




With the holidays –  something for the kids


Corn Husk doll  

Corn Husk Doll

Make a Corn Husk Doll taking 1 hour.

How to make corn husks  VIDEO corn husks



  • Dried corn husks or tamale wrappers (available at grocery stores)
  • Twine or string
  • Scissors
  • Pipecleaners
  1. Soak the dried corn husks (approximately 20 per doll) in warm water for about 10 minutes to soften them, then blot them dry. Next, gather twenty 10-inch lengths of twine and tie an overhand knot at one end.2. Trim the husks so that they are each about 8 inches long. Then sandwich the knotted twine between 4 or so husks and tightly tie another piece of twine around the bundle just above the overhand knot.

    3. Make the doll’s arms by rolling up a pipe cleaner in a husk (arms into position). Roll up 2 more husks (without pipe cleaners). Then braid the three together and tie the ends with twine.

    4. Take the bundle from Step 2 and peel down the husks (as you would a banana) to create a head and expose the hair. Tightly tie the bundle where the neck should be, then insert the arms.

    5. Braid together 3 rolled husks (without a pipecleaner) for each leg. Then use 2 of the inner husk ends to tie the tops of the legs to the dolls. Trim the remaining husk ends an inch below where the legs are attached.

    6. Snugly wrap a single husk around the doll’s hips, tying the ends together to secure it. Trim the knot tails.

    7. Now it’s time to dress the doll. If making a girl, go right to Step 8. For a boy doll, create leggings by wrapping a single husk around each leg and tightly tying twine around the very top. Then fringe the leggings by making a series of short snips along the outer sides.

    8. For a skirt, sandwich the doll’s body from the hips up with a few husks and secure them to the waist with twine. Then peel down the husks. For a girl doll, leave the skirt long; for a boy doll, trim 2cm from the waist. Finally, drape husks over the shoulders. Crisscross the ends in front and in back of the doll and sash them around the waist with twine.




If you dig into your recipe books you will find the name of Mediterranean greens known as ‘arugula’ or known in Australia as rocket. For those that love learning the species name – Eruca sativa of the mustard family and the reason it has a peppery flavour. [pronounction]

Eating ‘real food’ and especially greens we know provides great fibre. There are a number of benefits eating rocket. Great to see mainstream medicine promoting more about nutrition and a good discussion is here if you wish to know more – Medical News Today. 

They mention:

Leafy greens contain an antioxidant known as alpha-lipoic acid that has been shown to lower glucose levels, increase insulin sensitivity, and prevent oxidative stress-induced changes in patients with diabetes.


Fruit and Rocket Salad

Potato and Rocket Pizza

Rocket pesto

Rocket and parmesan frittata


Fruit and Rocket Salad

Fruit and Rocket Salad
Recipe Type: Salad
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 4
  • 1 apple & 1 pear, orange and apple, nectarine and mango,
  • 100gms of rocket
  • 1 fistful each of nuts (walnuts and almonds) or if nut free use seeds such as pumpkin or sunflower seeds
  • 1 tbs of parmesan cheese, grated or shaved)
  • 3-4 tbs olive oil
  • 1 tbs lemon juice
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  1. Leave on or remove skin of fruit as needed. Slice the fruits and pour the lemon juice on them, to prevent discoloration. Place the rocket in a salad bowl. Drizzle with extra virgin olive oil just to coat.
  2. Add the salt and black pepper and toss well. Scatter the nuts or seeds. Serve with parmesan cheese on top.
  3. Hint: Avoid soaking the salad so keep the dressing for adding separately.

Potato and Rocket Pizza

Potato and Rocket Pizza
Recipe Type: Pizza
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 3-4
  • 1 quantity Basic pizza dough – see recipe below
  • 2/3 cup rocket mixed with cashew and parmesan
  • 1/2 tbs olive oil
  • 350g potatoes, unpeeled
  • olive oil cooking spray
  • 50g rocket
  • [b]For the Pizza dough:[/b]
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1 tbs honey
  • 1-1/2 tbs olive oil
  • 1 tbs dry milk
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 cups flour (All purpose)
  • 1 cup semolina flour
  • 1 tbs corn meal
  • 3 tsp yeast
  1. Preheat oven to 200°C. Grease a 30cm round pizza tray.
  2. Place base on prepared tray. If Using fresh dough roll dough into a 30cm round. Place on prepared tray. In a food processor put 1/2 tbs oil, rocket, cashews and parmesan and blend.
  3. Spread with rocket dip. Thinly slice potatoes. Place, in a single layer, overlapping slightly, over dip. Spray potatoes with oil. Sprinkle with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until pizza base is crisp.
  4. Top with rocket and serve
  5. [b]
  6. To make Pizza dough[/b]
  7. Either make in the bread machine. Remove when done, put dough in a greased bowl and cover. Rise in warm area till ready to roll out.
  8. If by hand, mix water with yeast (wait 5-10 minutes). Add all other ingredients and mix, add yeast. Mix till forms a dough ball. Remove and knead 8-10 minutes. Then put in greased bowl, cover & rise. Roll out and put in pan sprinkled with a little corn meal.

Rocket pesto

Rocket pesto
Recipe Type: Sauce
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 4
  • 1-2 bunches rocket
  • 90gms toasted almonds
  • 1 lemon, juice
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  1. Place ingredients into a food processor with enough olive oil to form a coarse paste. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Rocket and parmesan frittata

Rocket and parmesan frittata
Recipe Type: Frittata
Author: Harvest Hub
Serves: 4
  • 7 large eggs
  • 1 leek, a finely sliced
  • rocket leaves, roughly chopped
  • ½ cup parmesan, grated (keep some for grilling)
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • fresh rocket to serve
  1. In a bowl crack eggs then beat adding rocket leaves and parmesan. Season with salt and pepper. Turn on grill high heat.
  2. In a fry pan heat 1 tbs olive oil adding leek and sweat 1 minute and add mixture. To have all egg cook lift edges with a spatula and let the egg run into the space. When near finished put some additional parmesan on top, cover handle with alfoil and pop under grill and watch closely while lightly browning the top and the cheese melts. Serve with fresh rocket


Sugar Plums

Sugar Plums

Now the Sugar plums, for the smaller children, simply slice open, take out pip and pop them together. The story of the ‘Sugar Plum’ fairy is a must along with the dance from the ‘Nutcracker Suite’  written in 1891-92 by Tchaikovsky. There is a story version on CD for adults and kids also motion picture. The kids will be glued to the story.


  • Sugar plum Crepes
  • Sugar plum crumble 
  • Sugar plums with mascarpone custard


Sugar plum Crepes

Sugar Plum Crepes
Recipe Type: Dessert
Author: Harvest Hub
  • [b]For the Crepes:[/b]
  • 2 tbs butter, melted and cooled slightly (I browned this first, which probably won’t surprise you)
  • 1/2 cup milk (fat level shouldn’t matter, but I use whole)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • Two pinches of salt
  • Few gratings fresh nutmeg
  • 2 tbs honey
  • [b]For the Plums:[/b]
  • 10 plums, pitted and cut into quarters
  • 1 tbs unsalted butter
  • 1 tbs honey
  • Pinch of ground cinnamon
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • [b]For the Asssembly: [/b]
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 3 tbs fresh mint leaves
  • Toasted and chopped pistachios or almonds
  • Additional honey, if desired
  1. [b]To Make crepes:[/b] In a blender, combine crepe ingredients. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour.
  2. Preheat a crepe pan over medium-high heat. Once heated, brush pan lightly with melted butter or oil. Pour 1/4 cup batter into skillet, swirling it until it evenly coats the bottom and cook, undisturbed, until the bottom is golden and the top is set, about 2 minutes. Carefully flip and cook on other side for 5 to 10 seconds. Transfer wrapper to paper towel covered plate. Continue with remaining batter.
  3. [b]To Prepare filling: [/b]Melt the butter in heavy, large frypan over a moderately high heat. Add the plums and cook them for 2 minutes, tossing them about until they’re warmed through. Add the honey and cinnamon and cook them for 1 minute more. Squeeze the juice of half a lemon over them and transfer to a bowl. Cover the bowl with foil if you’re looking to keep them warm for a while.
  4. [b]
  5. To Assemble:[/b] Lay a crepe on a plate. Dollop a couple spoonfuls of ricotta down middle of crepe. Add a spoonful or two of warm plums. Sprinkle with pistachios and mint, if using. Drizzle with extra honey, if desired. Fold crepe sides over each other, so that they slightly overlap. Garnish with extra mint.


Sugar plum crumble 

Sugar plum crumble
Recipe Type: Dessert
Author: Harvest Hub
Need 1kg of sugar plums
  • 150g of plain flour
  • 50g almond meal
  • 150g sugar
  • 50g dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp of ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp of ground cardamom
  • 120g of melted butter
  • 1kg of sugar plums
  1. Preheat the oven to 190C.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together 150g of plain flour, 50g almond meal, 100g sugar, 50g dark brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon each of ground cinnamon and ground cardamom. Slowly drizzle in 120g of melted butter and mix with a fork until it forms small crumbs. Break up any large crumbs so that none is bigger than 1cm. Pit and quarter 1kg of sugar plums and toss in a bowl with 50g of sugar. Spoon the plums into buttered individual ovenproof moulds and sprinkle the crumbs evenly on top.
  3. Bake for 30 minutes until the fruit is bubbling and the crumble is crisp.


Sugar plums with mascarpone custard

Sugar plums with mascarpone custard
Recipe Type: Dessert
Author: Harvest Hub
  • 250ml (1 cup) dry marsala wine
  • 1 vanilla bean, split
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 500g small sugar plums (order more)
  • 75g caster sugar
  • 2 tsp arrowroot
  • Mascarpone custard – see recipes below
  • 2 eggs
  • 75g castor sugar
  • 1 tsp cornflour
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 250g mascarpone
  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. Place the marsala, vanilla, cinnamon and sugar plums in a baking dish and sprinkle with the sugar. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes then drain juice into a saucepan and place plums in a serving dish. Combine the arrowroot with a little cold water, add to the plum juice, then cook over low heat, stirring until thickened. Pour over the plums and allow to cool.
  3. To make the mascarpone custard:
  4. Place the eggs, sugar, cornflour and vanilla in a bowl and whisk to combine. Place the bowl over a pan of simmering water and beat until thick.
  5. Remove the mixture from the heat and beat over a bowl of iced water until cool. Stir in the mascarpone. Serve with the cooled sugar plums.