Becs: I know Whittakers has featured here before but they do make great quality, affordable chocolate. My current favourite is their new Berry and Biscuit (love the name!) Basically like black forest but not as sickly sweet as the Cadbury version. If you live in the South Island Whittakers is on special this week at New World for 2 for $6, I for one will be stocking up on their Dark Ghana for last-minute Christmas baking.
Libby: I tried this Paneton sweet short pastry at a Julie Buiso class in Auckland a few months ago. Yes, even the professionals use the bought stuff sometimes and why not when it's this good? It has a lovely biscuity texture and comes pre-rolled so it's very easy to use. After finding it wasn't available in anywhere in Wellington I asked Moore Wilson (several times!) if they could please find room in their freezer to stock it. I also emailed Paneton to ask if they could get Moore Wilson to stock it. And a few weeks later I heard back to from Paneton to say Moore Wilson had come round! Wellingtonians, you've got me to thank for this one!