Lots of kitchen happenings since the last “In My Kitchen” post. The festive season has come and gone, many dishes prepared and mums visit has come to an end. Like I mentioned in my previous post, didn’t find time to document much but here are a few goodies and kitchen treasurers starting 2018 IMK posts.
In My Kitchen…
One of my favorite breads to bake is this very easy brown oatmeal loaf, no yeast involved and no kneading or proofing required. One way we enjoy this bread is, when topped with a home cured beetroot salmon, perfect together as canapés when entreating . As with most breads… sometimes a thick slice spread with a homely sweet jam is all you need.
Other kitchen equipment I wouldn’t be without, my serrated bread knife, cooling racks and loaf baking tins.
Made a large batch of rye crisp breads that kept for days in an airtight container, great for snacking on when hunger hits. With a red pepper paste and some cheese in the fridge meant a quick snack was only arms-length away.
When baking breads, wouldn’t be without my flour dredger, rolling pins and dough scraper.
Some months back I was given fresh kefir grains to make a type of fermented yoghurt drink called kefir. The only disadvantage was, needing to maintain the kefir grains by continuously feeding them milk which meant, making kefir almost continuously. And in our household, production began to outweigh consumption. So when an online shopping store, Panda Bahrain (Bahrain only), sent over a few goodies… delighted to find a box of freeze-dried kefir starter included. This meant no kefir grains to maintain and I could make kefir periodically as the box contained six sachets.
In My Kitchen…
Is Donna Hay’s latest cookbook “Basics to Brilliance”, a gift from my lovely son over the festive season. If I could only get into Donna Hay’s prop cupboard… it would be prop heaven. And of course her food photography is amazing. I collect some of her lovely magazines from time to time and do love her recipes. Haven’t cooked anything from this book yet but have earmarked a few.
A few lemons from our lemon tree that managed to turn yellow during Bahrian’s cooler months, most are picked green otherwise they would rot waiting to turn yellow. Did think our lemon tree only produced green lemons but discovered the cool weather is when they turn from green to yellow.
Sitting happily on my kitchen dresser are these gorgeous “pip studio” jugs, a birthday gift from my lovely daughter. Perfect for setting the scene for afternoon teas or for serving sweet sauces or cream in.
In My Kitchen…
Is the cookbook “Sweet” by Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh. Made the festive fruit cake, very lovely indeed but replaced most of the apricots in the recipe with dates, because we love dates more. The cake is iced only with marzipan which I didn’t mind. Loved the idea of scorching the marzipan with a blow torch for color and I think it added flavor too.
Have dinned in Ottolenghi restaurant in Spitalfields and on our last visit, tried their delicious apple and olive oil cake with a lovely maple icing, delighted to see the recipe included in the sweet cookbook. A gorgeous family cake, easy to make but quite large when all put together, so make sure you have some family or friends over… they defiantly won’t complain.
I wanted to make something different along with the usual desserts for Christmas Day and decided on the frozen parfait from the same cookbook. An espresso flavored parfait sandwiched between a chocolate hazelnut meringue topped with a coffee praline and served with a whiskey caramel sauce. Sounded delightful and perfect for a crowd. With many components, all made well in advance. When it came to serving this dessert I couldn’t appreciate the different layers of flavor and felt a bit disappointed, it took time to make.
Thankfully a few days later (and eating lighter) we had the remaining frozen dessert and really enjoyed the combination of layers and flavors. The consensus was… I didn’t do the frozen parfait justice serving it alongside other rich desserts, especially on Christmas day. And yes, will definitely make this lovely frozen dessert again but will drop the caramel sauce, personally felt it too much. Looking forward to baking more from this lovely “Sweet” cookbook.
The “In My Kitchen” monthly theme host is Sherry, from sherryspickings.blogspot.ie If you would like to know what’s cooking or see some kitchen treasures, head over to Sherry’s blog and check out all the other IMK participants.