Saturday, March 5, 2016

What's in my kitchen, March 2016

Annnnnnd it's March. A new season, and already I can start to feel the weather cooling down a tiny bit. Not enough to be comfortable yet, but we are getting there. Somebody told me that the average February temperature this year was 3 degrees above normal, and I'd believe it. It's been hot, humid and not very pleasant at all. I'm hoping the cooler weather brings easier sleeping weather, and that the change is season heralds some properly Autumn temperatures so I can switch to some warm and hearty dishes! With the heat and general busy-ness of life lately, I haven't had as much time in the kitchen as I'd like but I'm aiming to change that.

In my kitchen is...

A bowl of freshly picked chillies. My little chilli bush is groaning under the weight of quickly ripening fruit. I'm picking a handful of them every couple of days. Some we eat, some I give away and others are washed and then frozen as they are, ready to be pulled out and added to a meal. I find that frozen chillies chop beautifully, and don't lose too much flavour for being frozen. When my frozen stash gets too much, I might whip up a batch of home made tabasco sauce, but this requires forward planning as the cooking fumes are quite deadly and I need to make sure the kids are kept distant and distracted while I make it!
In my kitchen is...

A delicate rice bowl, painted with flowers and dragons. Traditionally, my rice bowl collection has been quite boring, either plain white utilitarian design, or the standard blue and white porcelain style. Something about this bowl called to me though, and I had to have it. I don't have any matching parts of the sets, but I like dragons and I like rice, so it fits beautifully into my crockery collection.

Incidentally, since I like trivia, and just assume others do too: the dragons portrayed on my bowl are Chinese dragons, as opposed to Korean, Japanese or Vietnamese. Dragons can be distinguished mainly by the number of toes that they have. Chinese common dragons have 4 toes and the Chinese imperial dragons have 5. Korean dragons have 4 toes but also have horns like a deer. Japanese dragons have 3 toes and Vietnamese dragons, like Chinese dragons may also have 4 or 5 toes, but unlike Chinese dragons, have wings and can breathe fire.
In my kitchen is...

Several rolls of soba noodles. When I am lazy and just can't be bothered to cook something fancy, noodles make an excellent and quick meal, while also allowing my to forage in the fridge and add bits and pieces which need using up. One of my favourite ways to prepare them at the moment is to add noodles into boiling water. I then turn the heat off and into the pot I also add some miso paste, whatever leafy green vegetables I have to hand (usually sweet potato leaves from the garden), some corn, mushrooms and shallots. I leave the lid on and allow the whole thing to sit (with occasional stirring) for 5-10 minutes until the noodles are soft and then distribute into bowls. Mr Fork will often add shredded cooked chicken to the his and the children's bowls, but more often than not we eat as is. Soupy, delicious, noodley goodness!

In my kitchen is...

Mini blueberry muffins, made from a variant of my wacky cake recipe. I used coconut sugar and added some blueberries and cinnamon. From the time I pulled out the ingredients to make them and then pulled them from the oven was 30 minutes. Healthy, vegan, home baked, and perfect for my mini humans to snack on. This particular batch was baked first thing in the morning and gone by the time Mr Fork got home from work. I think they were a hit, just quietly!

In my kitchen is...

A pot of rosemary. While I don't want to jinx myself, I have not been able to keep rosemary healthy and thriving for awhile. I'm not sure why, I've tried it in all different positions and soil types but it just doesn't make it. I'm hoping this is the rosemary plant that proves me wrong! This specimen was brought home for me by Mr Fork - one of the boys he works with recently got married and these were bonbonnieres at the wedding. The lovely man brought in a plant for everyone in the office. I love the idea of giving the guests something living and useful to take away and plant as a reminder of the special day. What a fabulous idea!
In my kitchen is...

A nude food banana mover. I'm all for waste free lunch boxes. I love using little containers and reusable wraps to store food. However, I've talked before (ironically, in a banana based recipe) about how truly anti-banana I am. This container was given to me in a collection of other lunchbox type containers and I honestly just don't think I will ever use it. I love the concept and I applaud the cleverness and effort that someone put into designing a flexible container to store a giant yellow herb in.
If you are located in Australia (just thinking of postage here) and think you could use this nifty little thing, please let me know in the comments and I will be in touch to get details so that I can post it to you and it doesn't languish unloved in my cupboard!
I am linking this post in with Maureen, the orgasmic chef, host of the monthly In My Kitchen event.

What's in your kitchen this month?

7 comments:

  1. Lovely peek into your kitchen - those rosemary bushes are great - I can grow rosemary but not parsley and that is a challenge I have this year. Your easy soba noodle soup sounds brilliant to me - less so to others in the house - so you put everything in the bowl and turn off the heat once it is in? I want to give it a go if I remember! Am curious about the banana container but have given bananas for school lunches and never get any complaints so am not sure we need one. And that is really interesting about identifying dragons - I never know this.

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    Replies
    1. Johanna, I'm the opposite, my parsley is thriving! If only we lived closer we could swap :)
      The soba noodle soup - yes, it's my version of a one pot pasta meal of sorts. I read once that miso should never be put into boiling water, so I turn off the heat once boiling and let the residual heat with the lid on cook everything. I don't eat meat so everything I add can be consumed after the few minutes of cooking time. Perhaps I should do a detailed blog post about it all when I make it next :)

      Delete
  2. I love the sound of your soba noodle bowls - and that beautifully decorated bowl. I never knew about dragon identification either!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Kari! I do so like random facts :)

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  3. I've always found rosemary very hardy but I can keep a pot of coriander about a week before it bolts. Your chillies look SO fresh and beautiful and that rice bowl is beautiful!

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  4. You could also check out the "Hutzler 571 Banana Slicer" on amazon.com -- 5,443 comments deride the need for this kitchen device. The top comment is found helpful by 32,852 amazon customers. You will laugh!

    best... mae at maefood.blogspot.com (a banana hater)

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  5. i can't believe my lovely little chilli bush with chillies on it was devoured completely by possums/turkeys. are they mad?:) that banana slicer is a hoot. and what a lovely bowl you have there.

    ReplyDelete

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