It has been a chilly autumn and with the arrival of June comes what promises to be a long cold winter. In my kitchen there has been purchases, presents and lots of cooking. As I wont be writing these recipes into blog posts, I am just squeezing in a few of their stories here.
Last month our lemon and lime trees were heavy with fruit. This month most of the fruit is blown off the tree and I am amazed at our yield. I needed Sylvia's toy trolley to bring them all inside. Lemons and limes are finding their way into soups, stews, cakes, and lemonade. They are being given to visitors, including members of a Gypsy jazz band that we invited into our yard on the weekend (as you do when bands play in your back lane)!
A friend pointed me in the direction of the Catalyst documentary (Our Chemical Lives
) and the dangers of plastics in our lives. It was one of the reasons I bought these new bowls to replace some of the plastic bowls we have been using for Sylvia. I have also bought a new electronic kitchen scale because my large bowl I use for bread dough kept falling off my previous electronic kitchen scales. And I love the colour!
After seeing the documentary, I have been throwing out some of my more worn plastics, including my green plastic chopping board. In its place is a new wooden chopping board that is already stained with pink from a pomegranate. Here it is seen with the loaf of overnight sourdough bread
that was responsible for Sylvia losing her first baby tooth.
I was in my local health food shop looking for an aluminum free deodorant and was delighted to discover a packet of beetroot powder. It has already been put to good use in my ombre potato and cheese torte
Sylvia and I have had a few craft moments at the kitchen table, including card making. I have enjoyed experimenting with painting and collage on greeting cards. Every time I do one that I like I think I never have to buy another card again but I don't always churn them out as quickly as I intend.
Sylvia's favourite meal lately is pasta with creamy cheese sauce. I decided to make this variation with grated carrot and peas in it but it did not go down so well with her. E and I loved it.
I was reminded of how good Angela
's Glo Bars
are and made another batch. I forgot the choc chips and thought they were really good without them. But I had some chocolate melts so I drizzled some over the bars. I think it was more about good looks than giving much of a chocolate taste but there were those in the house who liked it.
After I made the plum teacake with quince jelly glaze
I used the rest of the plums to make chutney
. I wrote in my post when I made it years ago that it took only 30 minutes to simmer down. This one took hours to simmer (2 or 3?) and I kept stirring regularly and yet it still managed to catch and burn on the bottom of the saucepan in about 5 minutes.
So I turned to fill my sterilised jars only to find that E had decided to wash the lids. Apparently he was being helpful but I still don't know what he thought I was doing when I simmered them in a saucepan for 10 minutes! So I quickly resterilised the lids and filled the jars and prayed that the chutney would not taste burnt.
I filled a few jars and had a spoonful or two over to try the next day. I had it on bread with some tofu besan omelet
. It was good so I am hopeful. However the spices still tasted a bit grainy and I remember they were better after the jam sat for some weeks last time so it is resting while we finish the last of the tomato chutney
Last week I told you about a most excellent chickpea, walnut and cranberry salad sandwich
that I made with a delicious avocado dressing. I really loved the dressing on a bowl of vegies and chickpeas too.
I have had my eye on some five seeds sourdough irish bread
for ages. The idea of combining the speed of soda bread and the flavour of sourdough sounds brilliant. I halved the recipe and found the dough quite dry, even with adding more liquid. This might be due to the different consistencies of sourdough starters. It was nice but not brilliant. I'm game to try it again so stay tuned....
I bought a huge squash from CERES farmers market. It was stuffed with a rice, lentil and vegie mixture. Nothing to set the world on fire but a good honest dinner. I really liked putting some leftover tomato broth from the baked cauliflower
into the water that I used to cook the rice.
I would like to pack more vegies in my lunches. While writing about my new blender, I thought I should check if I could make chickpea flour out of dried chickpeas. I could. Then I found myself with heaps of the stuff. I mixed it with lots of stuff from the fridge that needed using - cauliflower, pesto, corn, spinach - and fried it up into burgers. Most of them went into the freezer to be on hand for sandwiches or quick lunches. If only I can remember they are there!
Joanne's Eggplant Balls
at Eats Well With Others looked so yummy when I read her post about them that I had to try them when I had eggplant in the house. They were a pretty rough and ready dinner because I sort of ran out of time to do much side dish. The next day the leftovers were great on crackers with hummus and lots of vegies on the side.
E headed off to the City Library on the weekend to check out their booksale. He returned with an indie rock cookbook (Lost in the Supermarket
) for me. It has a very sweet salad by the very sweet Belle and Sebastian, some great potstickers from Gorch Fork and a tongue in cheek recipe for Fly Soup by Antony and the Johnstons. It is great fun to read through and I might even try a few of the recipes.
Even more exciting than an indie rock cookbook is Vegemite chocolate. I was so excited when I saw it in the supermarket that I couldn't wait to get home and try it. In the queue to pay, I happened to see an American friend and showed her. Her reaction to vegemite was a bit like Jimmy Fallon's
(ie horrified). We hurried home to tear off the wrapper!
It is only when I read the small print that I discovered it was actually chocolate with a caramel filling that was mildly flavoured with vegemite as in salted caramel. It was quite tasty with that odd flavour of vegemite hovering right at the edge of your tastebuds in a vaguely weird and yet acceptable way. Would I eat it again? Oh yeah! Would I eat it a lot? Of course not.
I am sending this post to Celia at Fig Jam and Lime Cordial for her In My Kitchen
event. Head over to join in (by 10th of each month) and/or check out what is happening in other bloggers' kitchens.