Please Pass the Recipe

from one generation to the next

In My February Kitchen 2015

In My Kitchen during January, birthday candles were lit in my honour, the number so large that we had to check the fire ban ratings on the day.

2015/01/img_4368.jpg
I received a Capricorn tea towel for my birthday. I may be an old goat, but according to this indisputable source, I’m resourceful, organised, efficient, hard working, witty and simply irresistable. The tea towel has spoken!!!

2015/01/img_4353-0.jpg
My passion for cookbooks is no secret. I’d been looking for “When French Women Cook” by Madeleine Kamman for several months, my interest piqued by Debi at My Kitchen Witch. I think my darling husband waded through hell and high water to track down the last new copy in Melbourne. It is a wonderful read!

Unprompted, he also surprised me with Greg and Lucy Malouf’s latest publication “New Feast” which is packed full of recipes for light vegetarian dishes with a middle eastern and Indian influence. Greg writes in the intro that he’s moving away from cooking “cheffy” food, pursuing simpler and healthier options, food that’s right up my alley. I made the carrot and chick pea tajine within 2 hours of receiving the book. It was a delicious dish. Standby for a post.

Adam Liaw’s “One Pot Meals” is now gracing my kitchen bookshelf too. I’ve bookmarked the recipes I am tempted to try, about 75% of the book. Drawing on his Chinese Malay heritage, the input of his Japanese wife and food memories from travels around SE Asia, the recipes are fresh and light, simple food for family meals.

2015/01/img_4355-0.jpg
We have a strong artistic gene in our family. My gorgeous number one daughter has inherited the talent. I’m drawn (no pun intended) to lines that sweep and curve, an element that Leah uses to great affect in her drawings and paintings. This was my birthday present from Leah, you might like to visit her Etsy shop.

You’re pretty safe in our family gifting food, booze and books. The booze element for my birthday was gin, good gin, made by small batch distillers. “Four Pillars” gin is a local Melbourne drop with orange overtones made by a Yarra Valley wine maker, while from the Isle of Islay in Scotland I have a bottle of “The Botanist” distilled with foraged local flowers and herbs. I detect juniper, subtle citrus and menthol characteristics. It is so smooth it’s tempting to enjoy it neat, on the rocks.

2015/01/img_4350-0.jpg
I also have a bottle of locally distilled Bass and Flinders’ “Monsoon Gin,” a far cry from traditional London gin with dominant juniper on the palate, this screams Asia, with lemongrass, ginger and lime. My next challenge is to tailor make tonic water syrups keyed to each gin’s dominant botanical notes so I can drink killer bespoke G and Ts.

2015/01/img_3787-0.jpg
While the grandkids were visiting we made a pilgrimage to the superlative Gelato Messina in Smith St. Collingwood. Collectively we swooned over the hazelnut, choc mint, lemon, passionfruit and salted coconut with mango. Armed with the recipe book and a love of gelato  I began hunting and gathering the required ingredients to go into gelato production. I found the dextrose easily, but when did skimmed milk powder vanish off the supermarket shelves? I had to order it online. Sadly waiting for delivery has delayed my first attempt.

2015/01/img_4349-0.jpg
Before Christmas I considered buying this gorgeous beaten copper jug, a gift for moi. I ummed and ahhed, then decided I couldn’t justify the asking price. Last week I walked past the same shop and there it was on a sale table, the price reduced by 70%!! Without hesitation I made it mine. Tap water never tasted so good, nor looked so glam.

The In My Kitchen series is hosted by the ever generous and lovely Celia at Fig Jam and Lime Cordial. I’m linking up with the world wide food blogging community who post an update each month about their kitchen activity.

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 February Kitchen 2015

  1. Pingback: Lime Cordial for the cocktail hour | Please Pass the Recipe

  2. Kim Bultman
    February 24, 2015

    Belated birthday greetings, Sandra! I’m so glad you treated yourself (on sale, hoohah!) to the hammered copper jug. Here’s to “glam” drinking water — and for recognizing that inner longing in your heart. When it’s meant to be, it’s THERE! I love when that happens. 🙂

    Like

  3. Moya
    February 20, 2015

    Happy birthday Sandra, we share the same birthday month. Lovely husband for surprising you with a cookbook you longed for. Love your daughters drawings and your copper water jug is fabulous 🙂

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 20, 2015

      So happy belated birthday to you too Moya. I’m sure you were spoiled too…

      Like

  4. How beautiful is that copper jug! I’m so glad you were able to get it at a bargain price! Happy belated birthday to you, you are anything BUT an old goat! Love Leah’s beautiful artwork and that French women cookbook sounds intriguing. I wonder if I can find it on Kindle? What a beautiful bottle the Botanist gin came in? I hope Anne and Slamseys has seen your post – she loves gin! 🙂

    Like

  5. Jennifer from Milk and Honey
    February 7, 2015

    I pretty much want everything that’s in your kitchen.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. The Life of Clare
    February 5, 2015

    The tea towel for your birthday is great! I hope you had a lovely day! The drawing is stunning! What talent! I always buy milk powder from Aldi, I don’t know if you have one close by.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 5, 2015

      Thanks for tip about milk powder in Aldi, I’ll check it out….

      Like

  7. thecompletebook
    February 4, 2015

    Happy belated birthday. I absolutely love your tea towel. My husband is a Capricorn and whenever anybody asks, he always says he is a hippopotamus. Hee hee.
    Have a lovely day.
    🙂 Mandy xo

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 5, 2015

      Your goat has a great sense of humour, just like my tea towel says!

      Like

  8. dedy oktavianus pardede
    February 4, 2015

    glad for you my friend, i also lovin purchased the clearance items too, lol

    Like

  9. fergie51
    February 4, 2015

    Happy birthday! Love the opening photo and there is a lovely feel about this whole post generally. I think Adam is a lovely soul and enjoy watching what he does. Hats off to all who can laugh at themselves, seems like you have a handle in this with the ‘old goat’ comment. Cheers.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 4, 2015

      Thanks Fergie, I never miss the opportunity to have a laugh….

      Like

  10. Glenda
    February 4, 2015

    Sandra, I am in love with your jug – absolutely fabulous.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 4, 2015

      Thanks Glenda, I love it too, it’s so much lighter than my glass jug

      Like

  11. Michelle
    February 4, 2015

    What a wonderful tea towel! I’ve long loved Madeleine Kamman’s books, and just came upon a new (not new, of course, but new to me) one. She was definitely prickly, but in a good way.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 4, 2015

      Thanks Michelle, don’t you think all tea towels should say nice things about the cook?

      Like

      • Michelle
        February 4, 2015

        Yes, for sure—and clearly that one did!

        Like

  12. Margot @ Gather and Graze
    February 4, 2015

    A belated Happy Birthday Sandra! I love so much about this post… especially in awe of you making bespoke G&T’s. How fabulous! 🙂

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 4, 2015

      Thanks Margot, don’t the years fly by? I’m going to try tailor to make tonic syrup to match the profile of each gin. Wish me luck!

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Francesca
    February 4, 2015

    Happy Birthday Sandra- I am now left to imagine how many candles and the date in January. My birthday was also held recently in January- I am Aquarian of the early variety, and they only stuck 5 candles on mine- much to the confusion of the youngest grandchild. The five part means that I am officially retired ( although have been for ages) and am also officially a geriatric ( according to hospitals). Given these awful facts, I think your tea towel is very appropriate.
    The book by Madeleine Kamman is a a treasure – a great read. Your other books look good too- it’s nice when you bookmark a whole heap of pages- a good sign.
    Glad you purchased that copper jug. Do they have any more and where? said with envy and jug lust.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 4, 2015

      Happy birthday to you too Francesca! I was 61 on Jan 13th! It’s a great stage of life don’t you think, still fit, and curious but wise enough to rest when needed and wear sensible shoes!

      Like

      • Francesca
        February 4, 2015

        I was a little older as you can gather on the 23rd. I am fond of my sensible shoes, and the odd Nanna nap, and travelling with a vengeance. I may have to ‘come out’ of hiding soon with a pic!

        Like

      • ladyredspecs
        February 4, 2015

        Yes it’s time!

        Like

  14. MamaD1xx4xy
    February 3, 2015

    Happy belated birthday! Looks like you got some lovely gifts. Your daughter is quite talented, I’ll be checking,out her Etsy shop in a minute. Your copper jug is gorgeous, how lucky it was on the sale table!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 4, 2015

      Oh I was so happy to see that copper jug on the sale table there was no hesitation opening my wallet!

      Like

  15. cheergerm
    February 3, 2015

    Happy Happy Birthday Lovely Mrs Recipe! What a fabulous collection of gifties. The tea towel was super cute. I have been eying off Adam Liaws book and with a birthday looming for me and your recommendation, I shall add it to the list! How very talented your daughter is and I am jelly (as the kids say) of all that lovely gin. The copper jug is the bees knees. Tres swish.

    Like

  16. Nancy |Plus Ate Six
    February 3, 2015

    What a gorgeous copper jug – just think of how many Moscow Mules you’d fit in there 🙂 I think you and I both have The Asian After Work book don’t we? I use it a lot so I’m looking forward to getting my hands on Adam’s new book. Happy belated birthday!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 4, 2015

      Thanks Nancy, yes I have both Liaw’s books now. I make the steamed pork belly wombok dish frequently thanks to your recommendation, we just love it! I’ve never tried a Moscow mule so a whole jug full seems a bit daunting. I’ll have to get the SIL/barman to get mixing!

      Like

  17. My Kitchen Witch
    February 3, 2015

    So glad you got a copy of When French Women Cook – what a wonderful husband you have to track down a copy. I really love the writing and I’m sure you will as well. The recipes are good, too, but I think the procedures are a bit too complicated (or perhaps old-fashioned) at times. I just use it as a guide and inspiration. So, Happy Birthday dear Capricorn! Love all your gorgeous presents. And, that beaten copper jug is fab. The shape is just like the graduated copper jugs found in Greece called kartoutsia – mainly used for serving wine that comes from the barrel.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      February 4, 2015

      I’ve finished reading Kamman’s memoir and absolutely loved it, especially the chapter about her Grandmother. I’ve marked a few recipes to explore further. Any more gems like this you can recommend?

      Like

      • My Kitchen Witch
        February 4, 2015

        May have another one up my sleeve, but need to finish it first before reporting back more fully in a post. If you want to have a go before I post on it. It is called Pomp and Sustenance: Twenty-Five Centuries of Sicilian Food by Mary Taylor Simeti. It has been reissued in paperback and kindle under the more prosaic title Sicilian Food: Recipes from Italy’s Abundant Isle. It is well written, filled with history and stories, but not quite as personal as Kamman’s book. Recipes look good, however. But, then, I really love Sicilian food!

        Like

      • ladyredspecs
        February 4, 2015

        Just downloaded the kindle edition, look forward to some bedtime reading, thanks….

        Liked by 1 person

  18. Raphaelle
    February 3, 2015

    Happy birthday Sandra, what a wonderful day you must have had! I am so jealous about all of your present – especially your new cookbook, that wonderful tea towel and the copper jug. It’s gorgeous! xxx – Raphaelle

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Information

This entry was posted on February 3, 2015 by in Food and tagged .
%d bloggers like this: