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In My Kitchen – Sept 2016

I’m happy to say that In My Kitchen is up and running again this month. I’m linking up with Maureen The Orgasmic Chef who hosts this monthly blogging community get together. It’s been sorely missed if the number of independent IMK posts that have been floating through the blogosphere are any indication. I hope your feeling strong, reinvigorated and comfortably back of your feet Maureen.

100% spelt sourdough

100% spelt sourdough

Both my time and my mind have been MIA from my kitchen of late. Gardening and dressmaking have been a distraction, but neither  have prevented me from baking 100% spelt sourdough loaves a couple of times a week. Yesterday I made a loaf of olive bread for lunches and a plain loaf for breakfasts. I’m proud to say my 11 month old grandson loves my bread, he gets quite excited when a loaf is on the table at mealtimes. I’m forever indebted to Celia @ Fig Jam and Lime Cordial who gifted me dried sourdough starter and for all the other bakers/bloggers from IMK who offered advice and support.

Ready to cook rhubarb

Ready to cook rhubarb

In My Kitchen is rhubarb. I picked up several large bunches for a song at a farm gate in the Tamborine Mountains while playing tourist with friends visiting from Melbourne. We love plain, lightly sweetened cooked rhubarb with Greek yoghurt on top of our muesli. Yum

Cookbook lust

Cookbook lust

In My Kitchen is my local library’s copy of “Chocolate” by Melbourne’s pastry cook Kirsten Tibballs. I’ll be adding a copy to my cookbook library ASAP. It’s both beautiful and inspirational. Kirsten has a long list of deserving international accolades on her apron strings. Her simple explanation of specialist techniques have totally won me over. I believe this book is destined to become a classic.

Chilli

Chilli

In My Kitchen are chillies, Esplette from the basque region of France and Turkish Pul Biber. I love the subtle nuance of chilli from different regions. For me it’s not just about palate searing heat.

In My Kitchen I’ve been using my pyrex 10cm tart dishes. They don’t get used very often so they’re not really a kitchen essential but they are the perfect single serve size for dessert. I bought them cheaply at least 20 years ago. Next week I’ll post the recipe for an incredible “new age” shortcrust.

potato ricer

potato ricer

In My Kitchen is a potato ricer. Potato Gnocchi has been on my mind and menu quite a bit lately. I always simply pulped the peeled steamed potatoes with an old fashioned masher, but having read about the virtues of potato ricers by dedicated gnocchi makers I thought for the small price it was worth a try.

A bamboo steamer basket with Steamed Rice Studded Meatballs

Steamed Rice Studded Meatballs

In My Kitchen I frequently make these luscious steamed pork and prawn meatballs, then with the prawn heads and shells I make a rich stock to freeze for a quick soup or for an injection of extra seafood flavour in paella or risotto.

What’s been happening in your kitchen?

 

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

34 comments on “In My Kitchen – Sept 2016

  1. patrick @alldayieat.com
    November 2, 2016

    great photos and bread !!!

    Like

  2. Gather and Graze
    September 13, 2016

    Always love to read your IMK posts Sandra… a little bit like being able to hang out in your kitchen with you. 🙂 Your bread looks phenomenal, you could start up an artisanal bakery with them! I can also relate to your section on chillies, having just bought some of Herbies Aleppo Pepper, which was a total revelation in flavour and gentle, balanced heat. Opens up a whole new world…

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      September 13, 2016

      Thanks Margot. I am totally in awe of the sourdough breakmaking process, it’s like alchemy. I’m excited every time I pull a loaf from the oven. Did you have success? The esplette is transformative with seafood…

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Liz - Good Things
    September 8, 2016

    I had the great pleasure of spending an afternoon in Kirsten’s company at the CIT in Canberra recently. She really is amazing. And that book is fab! I don’t think Maureen has managed to get her IMK post up as yet… there’s always next month. Incidentally, love the rhubarb!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      September 9, 2016

      Lucky you Liz, from what I understand Kirsten’s success has been grit, determination and hard work. She’s managed to work under the radar of the press too which goes to show popularity is not about talent. I had to return the library’s copy of Chocolate but immediately went and bought my own

      Like

  4. dunelight
    September 8, 2016

    I made gooseberry pie. It is difficult to find gooseberries but I found the canned variety on Amazon and ordered a crate. Wow…I made it tasty with this and that. The top was lovely but I had misplaced the old cookbook I used for canned pie recipes and I thought to myself, “that seems like a lot of liquid syrup” but I followed the recipe. It never set up quite right but was brilliant with a lot of whipped cream anyway.

    Like

  5. ChgoJohn
    September 7, 2016

    Your bread baking skills are impressive, Sandra. Those loaves look mighty good. I saw your ricer and immediately thought of gnocchi. I didn’t now they were used for anything else until i was a young adult. 🙂

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      September 8, 2016

      Thanks John, The bread is a miracle, I’m in awe each and every time I pull a loaf from the oven.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Moya
    September 7, 2016

    Sandra your bread looks amazing. I have used Celia’s starter too and she’s very robust. Love the little pyrex tart dishes and the fresh rhubarb. When I was a kid loved dipping rhubarb into sugar and then eating it 🙂

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      September 7, 2016

      I’ve never tried rhubarb raw, I will next time I have some in the kitchen. Praise be to Celia and Priscilla….

      Liked by 1 person

  7. EllaDee
    September 6, 2016

    I might have to venture from collecting different salts to chillies, I love a little heat and the idea of flavours. Some time ago I bought a potato ricer and I think it makes great mash replicating MKR’s efforts, although the G.O. prefers his using a masher but to date haven’t made gnocchi although that was the other purpose I had for it but not been brave enough yet.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      September 7, 2016

      A lot of flavoured salts I’ve tried have been disappointing but mother nature does a wonderful job of adding terroir to chillis. Do try making potato gnocchi, they’re quite simple. Getting the potato/flour ratio right can be tricky as potatoes vary so much, then there is the whole debate about adding egg, but once you nail it you can make the dough by feel.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Shari from GoodFoodWeek
    September 6, 2016

    Is the link back up at Maureen’s ? I can’t find her September post to link in with. I have been missing everyone’s IMK posts each month – it is so hard to keep track of who joins this great post {especially when I’m 36 weeks pregnant}. I love the rhubarb in your kitchen – rhubarb always reminds me of my Nan.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      September 6, 2016

      Hi Shari, I’m surprised your bothering with IMK at all given your advanced state of pregnancy, nevertheless it nice to have you visit. Maureen seems to be MIA, I hope she is OK. I’ve checked her blog a few times, there has been no activity in recent months

      Like

  9. Lovely loaves, I can hear the crispness of the crust as you cut it. I also love that Turkish chili powder, it’s a favorite. I haven’t heard anything from Maureen, hope she is ok.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      September 3, 2016

      Thanks Liz, baking more bread right now and the house smells heavenly. Just checked in on Maureen’s site, no activity there, I do hope everything is OK, I might check with Celia

      Like

  10. Karen
    September 3, 2016

    Would you believe I have a potato ricer and have never used it. This post has inspired me to go hunting for it.

    Like

  11. Pingback: In my Spring kitchen, September 2016 | Napoli Restaurant Alert

  12. Napoli Restaurant Alert
    September 2, 2016

    How awesome are those pyrex tart tins! I love pyrex!

    Like

  13. Eha
    September 2, 2016

    I won’t bother you and all sundry about all the homework you have made me do and still eat . . . : OK – had I a choice, the ‘Malouf’s chilli flakes’ should-would take the proverbial cake . . .

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      September 2, 2016

      Turkish chilli is delicious Eha, it has a distinct warm pepper flavour with only a medium bite. The esplette is far more complex and totally delicious with seafood

      Like

  14. Gretchen
    September 2, 2016

    Your loaves continue to look gorgeous. That chocolate cookbook could definitely get me into trouble, enjoying every bite along the way though.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      September 2, 2016

      Thanks Gretchen, we’re still loving having delicious bread to eat, I fear the pounds are rolling on….

      Liked by 1 person

      • Gretchen
        September 2, 2016

        This is why I try to limit myself to a slice or two of bread the day I bake it only. Carbs are not my friends anymore, drawbacks of genetics and getting older!

        Like

  15. ardysez
    September 1, 2016

    I’ll look forward to that new age shortcrust recipe, Sandra. This weekend passed I had the pleasure of tasting gnocchi like I have never before eaten. Our daughter ordered it and she gave me a taste. Now I’m lusting after more… I do have a potato ricer so perhaps I’ll get something going. I have my first tutorial for a sourdough bread baking student this weekend. Thank you, and Celia, for giving me the tools and inspiration.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      September 1, 2016

      You’re very welcome Ardys, and I have to say I pleased you’re spreading the sourdough love. Potato gnocchi is one of my favourite meals, good luck….

      Liked by 1 person

  16. creativeshare
    September 1, 2016

    As always, I could live in the corner of your kitchen and be content for the rest of my life.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      September 1, 2016

      You’ll have to negotiate with my pooch, I doubt he’ll give up his territory without a fight….😉

      Like

  17. Debi @ My Kitchen Witch
    September 1, 2016

    Why is it that other people’s sourdough looks better than my own? The grass is greener on the other side syndrome, perhaps. Your loaves look fabulous! Love potato ricers even if it is for light and fluffy mashed potatoes. Mine is lingering in a drawer back in the UK. Hope your gnocchi turns out well. New age pastry? Got me curious.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      September 1, 2016

      Loaf envy is common, I suffer from it too. My baguettes are a scary sight. I still haven’t tested the ricer for gnocchi, hopefully I’ll get there in the next day or two

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Francesca
    September 1, 2016

    Your bread is looking might fine and has that slow rise look and wonderful slash.Can’t wait for the new age pastry recipe. Pastry and I are not the best of friends so looking forward.

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      September 1, 2016

      Thanks, very happy with my loaves. After struggling for so long, I can’t believe how accomodating this sourdough is, I’m sure that Celia’s starter is the backbone.

      Liked by 1 person

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