Peter Gordon: Rid your shellfish of sand
I bought some fresh pipis on Saturday and made a lovely meal for myself and my good lady. I steamed them in pinot gris with a little garlic and a small finely chopped onion. Then I added a tin of Watties' pesto tomatoes and served it up on spaghetti with a few glugs of olive oil and a sprinkling of parsley. Simple, quick, tasty and fun to make and should've been delightful to eat. It was, apart from one problem ... sand. What should I have done to get the sand out of the pipis? - Nic Roberts
I had the same problem at Whangarei Heads in February - disaster. Firstly, wash the pipis well. Then place a cake rack or steamer basket in a bucket, add the pipis, cover with lots of cold water and leave for one to two hours. Take the pipis out with your hands then tip the water away. If the water is gritty you'll need to keep doing it. I know you might be wanting to cook them immediately but this purging is usually necessary.
As we are a dairy producing nation, why is clotted cream not available here? Is it possible to make it at home? - Heathe
Good question Heather - and worth posing to all our dairy producers. If anyone knows whether you can source New Zealand-made clotted cream, please let us all know. My husband and I are hosting the family Christmas celebration this year.
I'm keen to do something different so instead of the traditional Christmas ham, I'd like to do a Razorback wild boar ham, if possible. Do you have any suggestions for recipes? - Susan
Wild game is really tasty (some would say too strong) so make sure you know what flavour level your boar will be - I'd say it's likely to be farmed stock - which will be great. It's fairly lean meat so don't cook on a fierce heat or for too long. Serve with roasted stone fruit as a condiment and lots of gravy.