Sunday, August 14, 2016

What's in my kitchen, August 2016

Although our usual hostess Maureen is not formally hosting the IMK event while she focuses on getting well, I'm still putting up a (late) post. I know that I've let my blog post frequency slip of late, but reading (and writing my own) kitchen posts really is something that I look forward to each month. It seems that the year is just flying by. Where did July go? How is it August already? With that said though, bring on Spring! If I'm honest, the weather in Brisbane has been unseasonably warm for Winter so it's almost as though Spring is here. Some of my colleagues from Melbourne were up recently and they were happily walking around in short sleeves and soaking up the sun while I was shivering in tights and a trench coat. It's what you're used to I guess!

The 'cold' weather has been playing havoc with my sourdoughs lately (hence the lack of posting results online) but I am discovering other things that I can ferment...

In my kitchen is...

The beginnings of kombucha and a weird looking scoby. I recently attended a food fermentation workshop and came away inspired to have a go at making my own kombucha. While I'm a little grossed out at the way scobys look, I can't deny that I like to drink the results, and so I decided to give it a go. The workshop included a bottle of kombucha to take home, so I drank most of it and then used the last of it to start a scoby off. The first picture was taken a few days after I made up the jar of sweet tea, and the second picture is perhaps two weeks later. Probably could have given the jar a clean before I took the photos though...

I have since bottled my first batch, and the second is well on it's way to being ready. I still think it looks horrid, but I can get past that. Mr Fork despairs that I'm taking up significant kitchen bench space with all of my food projects, but I think home made deliciousness is worth it! 
In my kitchen is...

A new dishwasher. Our old one finally just gave up. We couldn't repair it anymore and all of the tweaks and love that Mr Fork tried to give it didn't work either. I think it had a good run - it was in the house when we bought it, and I'd estimate it's age at about 12 years, so that's pretty good for something used with frightening regularity (frightening because we go through an astounding amount of dishes here).

We procrastinated about replacing it as I wasn't sure I really wanted another one, but I'm happy to give up having to hand wash everything (see previous frightening amount of dishes comment), and it's quite exciting to have a new appliance. I'd thought that dishwashers were a standard size, but turns out there are small variations. This one was a mm or so too small for our existing space, but Mr Fork was able to take off part of the top cabinetry to make it fit. It's only obvious from the angle that I've taken this picture from, otherwise you don't see the gap.
In my kitchen is...

Cashew and dill cheese. I'm always excited to support local companies, and Peace Love and Vegetables from Byron Bay tick loads of boxes for me with their ethos, products and general way of doing business sustainably.

I haven't tried many commercial non-dairy cheeses, but this is so dangerously more-ish. It was good as a dip with vegetables, spread on a sandwich and even eaten by the spoonful. It was creamy and just really, really good. It wasn't cheap, so it's not something that I'd have very often, but for a treat and an occasional luxury, it's definitely something I'd get again.
In my kitchen is...

Again from the Peace Love and Vegetables company is a jar of sauerkraut. It was another attendee bonus from the fermentation workshop, and I've been adding it to just about everything in small amounts. It's a mild tasting kraut, and I've not found much that it doesn't go with. It's even quite nice and not too overpowering on it's own. When I've finished this - quite large - jar I'm well convinced that I'd have great fun mashing cabbage and salt about to make my own sauerkraut too. Stay tuned for that adventure :)
In my kitchen is...

A Costco find, a large box of vegan felafel sausages. While it's quite odd to me to have felafel in anything but ball form, I can't deny that it's super handy to have this sort of product on hand. One of the first things that I do after a Costco shop is to divide the large packages into normal portions. These sausages are now packaged in pairs in the freezer. I find them quite tasty - not too dry and certainly flavourful.

They were great for a quick meal of hotdogs one night. Mr Fork had meat dogs, and we made a variety of sides to share - sliced mushrooms fried up, sliced onions just on the cusp of being burnt (Mr Fork's favourite way of eating them), cheese, sauerkraut, tomato sauce, mustard. Everything was put in the middle of the table so that we could all make hot dogs to suit own personal tastes. Dinner win all around!

There is no official link up for the In My Kitchen this month, so I'm just going to throw it out there to all... what's going on in your kitchen this month?

2 comments:

  1. Sounds like interesting times in your kitchen - I love kombucha and am interested in your experiments - it is quite expensive to buy but so refreshing! And I think I would like to eat more sauerkraut - how do you eat it - I could imagine I would have it in sandwiches but not sure what else

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  2. I like the look of the Costco sausages! I am also impressed with your kombucha experiments.

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