In a happy chance my return from Fiji coincided with some winter sunshine and a cheap bulk buy of passionfruit at my local fruit shop. Which resulted in these sweet little morning tea treats that have me closing my eyes and drifting back off to the tropics (scroll down for recipe).
This trip was our first family-resort holiday. Usually we’re a van-park type of family, but stuff it, I hate winter and a few days of heat seemed entirely MEDICINAL. Of course the credit card may not agree for the rest of the year.
But we did create some pretty amazing family memories. With my kids a bit older, we skipped the kids club in favour of family frolics and some pretty adventurous snorkelling afternoons. It was so impressive to watch the kids step up, overcome some fears and get stuck in.
We moved about, but our favourite place was Mana Island – I can’t say enough good stuff about it and it’s still currently under renovation. It will be incredible in another six months or so.
And my tips for taking kids to a resort holiday in Fiji?
• If possible, find flights that don’t have you up for bus transfers at 3am. Or 2am. It kind of squishes some of the fun out of a short trip.
• Take a bunch of muesli bars and snacks to tide them over from buffet to buffet.
• Smother everyone in sunscreen all the time. Don’t trust the kids to do it themselves (speaking from experience).
• And even though the big resorts want you to tip when you pay the bill, slip cash to the staff who’ve been awesome. It makes a big difference to fantastic people who’s daily pay is about what you’d pay for a couple of beers. I find being the affluent-Aussie-in-poorer-countries thing quite awkward. The lady who was bringing me my cocktails by the pool had four kids under six and worked 8 hours a day, 6 days a week. And she smiled the whole time.
Passionfruit & coconut madeleines
1/2 cup caster sugar (or golden caster)
1/2 cup plain flour
1/4 cup desiccated coconut
4 passionfruit (juice & seeds). Use 3 tbsp tinned passionfruit if you can’t find fresh
75g melted butter
Icing sugar to serve (optional)
Preheat the oven to 200C. Grease madeleine or patty pans with HEAPS of butter – or they’ll stick.
Pop the eggs and sugar into a large bowl and whisk for several minutes until lighter and thick (sounds tedious, but very good for tuck shop lady arms).
Sprinkle over the flour and coconut and fold through gently. Stir through the passionfruit and butter.
Scoop tablespoon quantities into the trays and bake for 10-12 minutes, until golden and springy (these don’t rise much).
Leave to cool for several minutes before turning out and tossing in a bit of icing sugar (optional).
For another tropical treat, try my delicious little pineapple cakes.