Kitchen Tips

Host your own elegant garden party and raise money for Garden to Table

Help more Kiwi children learn to grow and enjoy fresh food by hosting your own Garden to Table Garden Party to raise funds for this important cause. Follow our autumnal orchard tea menu, or cook up your very own.

By Fiona Hugues
Imagine if all Kiwi kids had access to fresh, nutritious food and learned about how to grow, prepare and enjoy it every week at school?
The Garden to Table Trust has been working towards this very goal for the last 10 years, and has established food education programmes in over 170 schools nationwide.
This year, Garden to Table are launching their Garden Parties fundraiser as a fun and creative way to support kids in our communities to learn to grow, harvest, prepare and share fresh food. Money raised from the 2019 Garden to Table Garden Parties will help the trust train and support primary schools throughout Aotearoa to begin and deliver their Garden to Table programme.
Hosting a Garden to Table Garden Party is a great way to catch up and share delicious food with your friends, family or colleagues, while supporting Garden to Table by raising essential funds.
  1. Register your planned party. Tell us when, where and what your party theme will be, and we'll send you a link to your party resources pack. Registration means you can also go into the draw to win great prizes.
  2. Set up your donation page. Once you've registered, we'll send you a link to set up your own Givealittle page. Send this link out with your invitations so guests can donate online and in advance. You can collect donations from your guests on the day, too.
  3. Plan your menu and invite your guests! Once you know who's coming, you can get started planning all the gorgeous details of your garden party.
  4. Transfer your donation and pat yourself on the back for making a difference to the lives of Kiwi kids.
Garden Party registrations are open now. Register to host your Garden to Table Garden Party at
Recipes and styling by Fiona Hugues. Photography by Fiona & Maude Hugues

1. Roasted grape and pumpkin agrodolce platter

Surprisingly, common table grapes relish some roasting time in the oven, transforming into little caramelly globes of flavour which, in this dish, burst sour-sweet deliciousness onto a platter of roasted pumpkin. A sprinkle of toasted seeds adds a final, lovely crunch.

2. Roasted beet salad with orange, walnut and labneh

This roasted beet salad combines the sweetness of beetroot with the tanginess of orange, adding in a delicious crunch from walnut and the creamy tartness of labneh. Serve as a flavour explosion on the side of a main dish!

3. Fennel, apple and kale salad with creamy nut dressing

Guests will love this fruity and leafy fennel, apple and kale salad with a slight lemony nut crunch. Kale and cavolo nero are easy to grow and can easily be substituted for each other – here Fiona has used a combination. Just remove the tough central stalk from the leaves before slicing or chopping finely.

4. Crispy chicken thighs with blackberry vinaigrette

A zingy sauce with barbecued meat is one of my favourite things, like the vinaigrette which delivers a sweet and sour piquancy to these crispy chicken thighs. Try it – and this simple salad – with roast pork or shredded duck, too.

5. Blackberry and apple tea cake with blackberry cream

In the late afternoon, there's nothing nicer than a slice of this blackberry and apple tea cake with lashings of blackberry cream, but it's even more satisfying when you've foraged the berries yourself. If you can't find wild berries, frozen ones will work just as well