It’s been a while since we visited my kitchen. Fighting vertigo made it impossible to do much at all but I’m feeling better and ready to join all my friends doing “In My Kitchen” posts as part of a fun monthly adventure from Celia at Fig Jam and Lime Cordial. If you’d like to share what’s going on in your kitchen, write a post and link it up. I’ve made so many new friends doing these posts.
A while back I was sent this lovely Maureen gift from Kirsty Young at Make It, Bake it, Snap It. Kirsty is a food writer from Canberra and we met through Facebook. I was totally shocked when I opened the package. Isn’t it cute? For just a whisker of a second the thought flashed across my mind that if I got dementia I would remember my name.
If you’re in Australia, you know who Valli Little is but if you’re not, Valli is a food hero of mine. I’ve watched her cook a few times at the Noosa Food and Wine Festival up in Noosa and she’s the food editor at the ABC’s Delicious magazine. She’s also written several other cookbooks and one of my faves is Faking It: How to Cook Delicious Food Without Really Trying. Feel Good Food by Valli Little is available at all good book stores.
I received a package one day from France Gourmet, importers of fine French culinary products who are located in Brisbane. Eve asked if she could send me a few products to whet my appetite. As many of you know, both sets of grandparents came from French speaking Canada and their grandparents came from France. I had no choice but to love French peasant cooking. My maternal grandmother was a private chef for a while (before having 12 children) so she would have been familiar with products like these. She never cooked escargot for us!
France Gourmet sells French cheeses, croissants, foie gras, pates, fleur de sel, jams, appetisers, kitchen accessories and so much more. I could spend an afternoon and all my money at a place like this.
I was perusing the USA Foods website one day for my routine order for shortening, French Fried Onions and other things I miss and found a beer can chicken holder and it was under $10 so I bought it. I’ve used it 3 times already and the chicken was perfectly cooked. The first time I used root beer because *someone* drank the beer but the chicken was still perfectly cooked.
Smudge Eats, the publisher of the Flavours of series of books has launched their Queensland edition and they sent me one. It’s filled with recipes from around the state plus recommendations for many top restaurants. You can pick up a copy of Flavours of Queensland from their shop along with Flavours of Sydney and Flavours of Melbourne.
Their Second Flavours of Melbourne book in 2013 won the Best Culinary Travel Cookbook in Australia at the International Gourmand Awards. These folks do quality work.
Barilla, the pasta people, sent me several items in their gluten free range. I said I’d try it and I’ll admit that I was apprehensive. I’d tried some gluten free pasta once before that had been hand made and I thought it was awful so I closed my eyes, took a deep breath and opened my mouth.
I opened my eyes and said, “this is an anticlimax – I can’t tell it’s gluten free.”
Obviously that was their goal.
Well yes and what a good job they did. My friends Jan and David have been away in France, kicking it up with Jamie Schler from Life’s a Feast at her new hotel in Chinon and other places in France during the 2 months they were gone. Jan is gluten intolerant and when I posted the salad photo on Facebook she was over the moon and wanted to know where she could buy pasta she could eat. She can buy it at any Woolworth’s supermarket.
Jan and David are now back and they brought me these wonderful mustards from Dijon! Jan said when she went into a mustard shop she told the staff that she was familiar with Maille mustard and they said, “That’s a swear word around here!” She looked at them a bit funny and they said that Maille used to be in Dijon but it left there and its mustard is made in other parts of the world where labour is cheap and it’s no longer true Dijon mustard. So file that away for future reference. 🙂
Do you like matcha? I had some once that was really bitter and when I was asked to give this a try I hoped it was going to be good. Matcha tea boosts health, energy and concentration and that’s a good thing around here. The powder was beautifully green and soft and I immediately made some matcha ice cream which was a bit hit.
Matcha has taken the world by storm and for good reason. Drinking it as tea gives you more antioxidants, induces alertness and it tastes good. I made some matcha crepes and some green tea coconut fudge. I gave the Grace & Green company full marks. They sell all their products online too with free delivery on orders over $34.
Finally, here’s my friend Charlie decked out in his pink tie for #breastcancerawareness just before the campaign ended in October. To be honest, he was only interested in the liver treat I was holding.
Please visit some of the other folks who are listed on the right side of figjamandlimecordial.com. You’ll see outstanding things in their kitchens.