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In My December Kitchen……

In my December kitchen are the beginnings of a celebration.

Christmas and birthdays, which come close on its heels will be celebrated interstate with my wonderful family this year. Because I’ll me making my contribution to our feasts in an unfamiliar kitchen, in an unfamiliar city, I’m packing a small bag of ingredients and a few essential tools to carry with me, specialty items that might be hard to find. We’re driving north so I don’t have to worry about a baggage allowance!

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It includes a packet of titanium strength leaf gelatine. Never rubbery, never lumpy, 2 sheets of melted gelatine added to 500g of frozen berries makes a delicious jelly for kids, or a beautiful topping for a sponge or trifle. You’ll find the complete instructions here.

A small jar of tamarind, a block of blachan, some dried chilli, fish sauce, kecap manis and tamari for quick, Asian inspired salads and marinades for the BBQ.

My fish tweezers so that the salmon for the Christmas Gravlax is easily pin boned.

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Gorgeous patty pans so that when I make Raspberry Surprise Cupcakes for the tribe of kids, they look extra festive.

A packet of my favourite “Farabella” gluten free pasta for a salad or quick meal. This gluten free pasta ticks all the right boxes for me!

My oyster knives to guarantee the oysters WILL be freshly shucked!

My still brewing Gingerbread Liqueur, yet to be strained and bottled because what is Christmas with out gingerbread! You’ll find the recipe that inspired me here.

Celia from Fig Jam and Lime Cordial hosts a monthly “In My Kitchen” forum where you are able to take a peek into kitchens from all around the world. Why don’t you join in the fun?

About ladyredspecs

I live in sunny Brisbane, Australia. My love of good food drives me as a cook, a reader, a traveller, an artist and but mostly as an eater. I cooked professionally for many years but have no formal training. Simply guided by a love of eating good food, respect for ingredients and an abhorrence of artificial additives, I cook instinctively applying the technical know how acquired by experience. I hope you enjoy what I share Sandra AKA ladyredspecs

38 comments on “In My December Kitchen……

  1. nancy@jamjnr.com
    December 11, 2013

    Can I tell you I’m landing in Melbourne tomorrow and in the suitcase is my trusty kitchen knife, a small melon baller, a muslin cloth and hundreds of truffle paper cases…..I’m so happy I’m in good company. Have a fabulous time cooking with Leah.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      December 11, 2013

      Welcome home! It’s the little things that make a difference, you can’t take any risk! Have a happy Aussie Christmas, I will!

      Like

  2. Oh yes, I’m all for taking along the things you need when you’re in an unknown kitchen. If we travel for longer than a day or so and there’s a kitchen involved, I alsways take a good knife and a grater. I can’t tell you how many times that grater has been pressed into service. Cumin and Cinnamon are also always in there. Some people are going to be very spoiled this Christmas. Lucky them!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      December 7, 2013

      Haha, a sister, it’s not crazy is it? Best to be prepared I say! Thanks!

      Like

  3. Tandy | Lavender and Lime
    December 5, 2013

    Have fun shucking the oysters!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      December 5, 2013

      Hey we will, then we’ll enjoy those little briny critters as we slurp them off the shell! Thanks for stopping by!

      Like

  4. heidiannie
    December 5, 2013

    Wow- you are prepared! I get hassled for taking my own knives and measuring spoons- but then again- I get hassled even when I don’t take my own stuff.
    Have a great time- it sure looks like you will all be eating well!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      December 5, 2013

      Thanks Heidiannie, we always eat well! BYO tools alleviates frustration and regrets. Happy Christmas

      Like

  5. Marianne
    December 5, 2013

    I’m so impressed reading the list of items you’ll be bringing on your Christmas trip. The only thing I have close to those things is cupcake papers, but not as fancy as yours! Hoping you have a wonderful holiday!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      December 5, 2013

      Thank you Marianne, I’ve afraid we are a family of food tragics and we’re not accustomed to compromise! As the matriarch there are standards to uphold!

      Like

  6. dishnthekitchen
    December 5, 2013

    Gingerbread liquor….hmmmm sounds mighty tasty. Man I miss those Coffin Bay Oysters!!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      December 5, 2013

      That liqueur is still brewing it takes that long for the spices to permeate. It will be a pre Christmas post for next year! Briny, freshly opened oyster are wonderful, I really like those from Australia’s Southern waters! Happy Christmas Bernice!

      Like

  7. Glenda
    December 5, 2013

    Your holiday preparations suggest a great time is in store. Enjoy it.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      December 5, 2013

      Thanks, we’re excited to be spending time with our daughter who lives 2000 kilometres away!

      Like

  8. chef mimi
    December 4, 2013

    so, what is blachan? Love your post!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      December 5, 2013

      Thanks you! Blachan is fermented shrimp paste, commonly used in Thai cooking. It’s also known a trasi, belacan, and kapi. It stinks, but, it has amazing seasoning properties. It’s not salty, or smoky or spicy, but adds umami. It’s an essential seasoning in Pad Thai.

      Like

  9. thecompletebook
    December 4, 2013

    What fabulous treasures you are taking with you!
    Have a wonderful trip, Merry Christmas.
    🙂 Mandy

    Like

  10. ChgoJohn
    December 4, 2013

    You write another post like this, detailing all you’re bringing with you, and you’ll have your fellow countrymen searching the highways for you, knowing that wherever you’re going, there’s going to be a feast! Have a great Christmas!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      December 4, 2013

      Haha, thanks John, a bit like you going to visit your Aunt me thinks!

      Like

  11. Francesca
    December 4, 2013

    A great tip regarding the titanium strength gelatine and berries!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      December 4, 2013

      It’s a sensational albeit expensive way to make jelly, so good in fact you’ll never buy Aeroplane again!

      Like

  12. marymtf
    December 4, 2013

    Have a fabulous time.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      December 4, 2013

      Thanks, I’m excited to be able to spend time with my faraway daughter!

      Like

  13. It sounds like you’ve packed for every contingency! And it all promises a glorious feast – have a wonderful time celebrating with your family! Merry Christmas! x

    Like

  14. bakeritalia
    December 4, 2013

    I think I’d like to come to yours for the Holidays!

    Like

  15. Transplanted Cook
    December 4, 2013

    All the ingredients for lovely feasts with family! Wising you a very Happy Christmas!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      December 4, 2013

      Thanks, my daughter and I are planning to spend quite a bit of time in the kitchen, standby for some collaborative posts!

      Like

  16. trixfred30
    December 4, 2013

    I was wondering what those knives were for – never seen them before!

    Like

  17. Kim Bultman
    December 3, 2013

    I’m grinning about you packing ingredients and tools for your upcoming journey. Nice to know I’m not the only one who brings the essentials, just in case. Enjoy your time with your family — I’m certain they’ll appreciate everything you cook!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      December 3, 2013

      I’m definitely a kitchen tragic! Time in the kitchen in my daughter will be wonderful!

      Like

  18. Fae's Twist & Tango
    December 3, 2013

    Holiday season is truly wonderful. Lots of work, yes, but the excitement of being with family. I’ll be looking forward to your story and masterpieces from the event(s).

    Like

  19. Marian at Apricot Tart
    December 3, 2013

    What a great collection of goodies!!! I especially like your oyster knives – I have the privilege of having a beach front holiday home overlooking the original – and still operational – oyster farm at beautiful Coffin Bay! There is simply nothing better than those Coffin Bay oysters shucked and eaten straight from the sea!

    Merry Christmas!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      December 3, 2013

      Oh I am envious. We visited Coffin Bay a few years ago, it’s so beautiful, as are very fresh oysters! Happy Christmas to you too!

      Like

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This entry was posted on December 3, 2013 by in Food, In My Kitchen and tagged , .
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