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Hot Five: 18 June 2010

Devouring_The Collective’s Squeaky Haloumi
Regular readers will know that haloumi and I are like *this*(cue fingers tightly crossed together in the BFF style salute), so as well as scouring the menus of cafes around the country for dishes that speak delicious, I also like to DIY a good haloumi dish myself. So when I saw a newcomer on the refrigerated aisle of my local supermarket I was stoked – especially given the five star heritage that stands behind The Collective”s Squeaky Haloumi ($6.39). The Collective are new-ish to the market, but come with some pretty heavy credentials; founding members include the likes of Pitango and Canaan cheeses on their CV. You may have seen their delicious yoghurts and range of soft cheeses (cream cheese, cottage cheese, ricotta, marscapone, crème fraiche etc) already, but brace yourself for the jewel in the crown. Eager to find a recipe to match the  haloumi’s potential, I googled up a storm and soon came across the delightful Vegie Num Num blog with their spin on Chickpeas with Haloumi and Mojo Verde. Absolutely delicious, divine and so easy to prepare.

Loving_My Hair Styling Arsenal
Lately I’ve been getting a lot of compliments on my hair – which is odd because it’s actually well overdue for a cut and colour. Love that! Have I been doing anything differently? Well yes, but it’s not one thing in isolate, rather a combination of factors which I think can be summed up nicely by one of our hair gurus, Gareth Chitty who said; “Whatever you do, use the correct products! We could not do most client”s hair with the tools they use at home so imagine how hard it is to do it yourself. The right tools will change your life!” I’m almost tempted to finish that off with “Word”.  I’ve been using Sebastian’s Light shampoo and conditioner ($40 each, call 0800 800 128) for a beautiful base, blow drying with the super powerful VIA Ionic Hair Dryer ($120, call 0800 787 456) and then finished off with the new Cloud Nine classic iron ($350, call 0800 252 530) on the lower heat setting, which is perfect for styling my hair, but not leaving it poker straight. Cloud Nine are the new irons on the market, but like The Collective above, their heritage is pretty impressive, afterall, they”re made by the founders of ghd! All in all, a reasonably pricey combo, but one that’s delivering great results.  Can’t argue with that…

Watching on Repeat_Ari Gold Remixed
Anyone else amped by Jeremy Piven’s tweets last night? Entourage season 7 premiered in the US which means more episodes of amazingness on its way! Oh yeaaaah! If you’re not up with Entourage – don’t despair, it was one of the worst programming fails of this country that saw it relegated to late night television pretty much from the get go, not your fault. But take responsibility for the path forward by holding an Entourage marathon and catching up – the joy of six seasons, unseen is wondorous. And given that it’s like the guy’s version of SATC, with fictional movie star Vinnie Chase trying to make it in Hollywood along with his man pals, you can pretend like you’re doing your male friends a favour by ‘putting yourself through this’ for some ‘quality time’ moments. Most DVD stores should have copies of the series (ask the guy behind the desk, he’ll know) or you can etc. Or just watch this classic Ari Gold remix on repeat.

Lining up for_tickets to the NZ Film Festival
In the madness of preparing our new nzgirl site, I haven’t had my finger on the pulse of as many things as I would like. Case in point, nearly missing the start of the 2010 New Zealand Film Festival. One of my favourite cinematic experiences of the year, because in the 09 you get to watch films in the wondorous setting of the Auckland Town Hall, or the Civic! Glamour! Last year we reveled in the fashion frenzy that was Coco Avant Chanel and The September Issue – such fun! I’ve only just begun to pore over the programme but I’ve already circled the Banksy film Exit Through The Gift Shop, Gainsborough, and The Runaways. Tickets are on sale NOW for the Auckland screenings via Ticketek so get there pronto, with Wellington on sale from Tuesday 22 June.  The Festival is doing a roadie around the country and will appear in 15 destinations from Kerikeri down to Dunedin between July and November so check out www.nzff.co.nz. Please do me a favour and let me know what you’re most excited about seeing on our Facebook page.

Remembering fondly_The Sanctuary Day Spa Experience at Mollies
If you’ve had an average week at work, maybe stop reading the Hot Five at this point. After all, what I’m about to reveal may send you in a spiral of jealousy. Hand on heart, I love my job for so many reasons, including the fact that getting to sample divine spa treatments in order to espouse their goodness on the site is part of my job description. I’m a fan of regular massages to work out the aches, pains (and grouchiness) that comes from working over a desk day in, day out and try to fit them in once a fortnight if I can. I was well overdue for my latest one and combined with a massive workload as we prepare the new nzgirl site for launch (see above), I was about to book in when I received a call from the lovely team at Mollies to say they’d love to have me in to sample a treatment. Talk about the universe at work! My massage from Fern was fantastic and a special treat at 60 minutes (more than my usual) – but what was even better was the discovery that the Day Spa and Restaurant at Mollies, a five star, luxury, boutique hotel nestled in Ponsonby isn’t only for hotel guests, but that anyone can book in to experience the decadence. I heavily recommend perusing their Day Spa treatment menu and their restaurant menu when you’re next in the need of pampering (for yourself, or someone else) or somewhere that little bit extra special to visit for your next girlie brunch or romantic dinner (like their Midweek Affair package, $150 for a 3 course dinner bottle of wine for two!). All you have to do is book…

FOR BETTER OR FOR WORSE_The nzgirl hot five promise

nzgirl”s hot five is an institution on the site – and for good reason. It”s where we share our five favourite things from the week. You can”t buy a space in the hot five, it”s at our total discretion and Tee”s dictation and we want you to know that.

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