New food reviews (including the new Whittakers!)

Food is one of life’s great pleasures, and every few weeks I’ve been sharing with you some of my favourites, or giving you the low down on my taste and nutrition opinion on foods.  Here’s some things I’ve tried the past few weeks.

Organic Dried Banana Chunks

I’d been wanting to try a recipe with dried banana, but haven’t been able to find any and doing my own was a bit of a disaster.  Then I found these babies at Moore Wilsons.  They’re organic, and contain no Screen shot 2015-05-24 at 6.48.39 PMadded sugar or preservatives.  It’s just dried banana with a little lime.  I ate a strip before using them in cooking, they were really yummy, chewy and intensely banana flavoured.  Delicious!  Because it’s a dried fruit, it’s best for occasional use rather than every day. A bag of dried bananas is about equivalent to two fresh bananas – so if you want to eat them dry, half a bag would be a good serve.  A yummy sweet treat though.  These were $2.75 a bag at Moore Wilsons

In case you’re interested, for a 50g bag, the nutritional information is as follows.

Energy: 690kj/164 calories
Carbohydrates: 38g
of which is sugars: 22g
Sodium: 1mg
Potassium: 500mg
Fibre: 2.2g

 Whittakers Samoan Cocoa Chocolate

whittakerssamoancocoaSo the new range of Whittakers chocolates have hit the shelves and the flavours sound amazing.  I bought this dark chocolate for a recipe, but of course I tried a few sneaky pieces before I used it.  It’s divine.  Creamy, rich and flavourful, it’s got that great melt in the mouth feel.  I love the thin pieces too.  I also tried  a few pieces of the salted caramel chocolate and that was delicious too.  Has anyone tried any of the other flavours?  I really want to try the white chocolate with apple and vanilla!

This chocolate is 64% cocoa, so it’s dark, but not super dark.  The cocoa is single origin, meaning all the beans are sourced from Samoa.  It’s nice to support our pacific neighbours and if this is anything to go by, their cocoa beans are spot on 🙂

Go Healthy Manuka Honey

I was sent this honey by Health 2000 to try out.  It is definitely very yummy.  The UMF mark on this go-manuka-honey-umf5-600x600-600x600stands for Unique Manuka Factor and is a quality trademark and grading system for identifying manuka honey that has a special unique natural property found only in some strains of manuka honey.  Grades go from:

  •   0-4  Not detectable
  •   5-9  Low levels
  • 10-15 Useful levels
  • 16+   Superior high grade levels

Manuka honey contains an antibacterial component called methylglyoxal (MG). This is found in most honey, but only in small amounts. It’s higher in manuka honey because manuka flower nectar contains a compound called dihydroxyactone. This is then converted to metylglyoxal (1).  Manuka honey is delicious, but consuming it doesn’t protect you from bacterial infections.  Most of the benefits of manuka honey has been around assisting with healing wounds (this is a special medical grade of honey, not the stuff from your cupboard). You can read a bit more about medicinal uses of honey here.  My favourite use for honey is a hot lemon and honey drink. It’s very soothing on a sore throat – I’ll be using my honey for this purpose.   You can buy it online here.

The Muesli Hub Muesli

The Muesli Hub is a great concept.  You go online to their store and make up your muesli just as youScreen shot 2015-05-24 at 8.20.43 PM like it – choose your favourite nuts, seeds and fruits to go into one of their specially crafted bases.  The base mixes include a gluten free mix, as well as a bircher, toasted and dry roasted blend.  After choosing your base you can add in whatever extra goodies you wish.  I’ve just been dreaming up a blend of brazil nuts, blueberries and mango with chia seeds.  As well as creating your own, you can buy some of their premix blends.

I was sent the Honey Roasted Bliss blend to try which is a blend of whole-grains, seeds and nuts in NZ honey to lightly coat them. This mix is then topped off with dried apricots, banana chips and yummy yoghurt coated cranberries.   It was very tasty, and not too high in sugar either. A 50g serve contains 5.4g of sugar, and also gives you a fibre boost, with about 4g of fibre.   I’ve been having mine with Greek yoghurt and feijoa – it’s a delicious combination.    This brand is $16 for 500g.  You can get your own here.

Have you stumbled across any new foodie finds this week?

6 Responses to New food reviews (including the new Whittakers!)

  1. Edin May 25, 2015 at 8:34 am #

    The Apple and Vanilla and Pear and Honey Whittakers are very very sweet. The apple has freeze-dried apple pieces which are a really nice flavour and texture, but the pear has “pear and honey pieces” which are quite chewy and stick to the teeth tenaciously. I still want to try the chilli and maybe the tea, not 100% sure how I feel about the tea one though!

  2. Lucy @ Lucyeats May 25, 2015 at 12:13 pm #

    I love the thinking behind Muesli Hub! I’m going to give their website a go after work 🙂

  3. Nicola May 25, 2015 at 8:50 pm #

    Thanks for the heads up! I think the Apple and Vanilla will be next to try for me. I’m not 100% on the chilli one, and the tea one does sound a little different…. If only they came in mixed blocks so you could just try a piece 🙂

  4. Nicola May 25, 2015 at 8:53 pm #

    It’s a neat concept huh? Let me know how you get on with your mixing 🙂

  5. Olivia May 26, 2015 at 8:10 pm #

    Love the idea of the Muesli Hub, but it’s so expensive that I can’t get behind it. It would be SO much cheaper to just make your own, and really easy as well.

  6. Nicola May 28, 2015 at 5:57 pm #

    It is cheaper to make your own 🙂 I guess for those that want to make their own, but don’t have the time, or don’t want to go out and buy bags of nuts/fruits etc, it makes it a good option.

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