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In My Kitchen… November 2016

November is here and I find myself cooking up a storm. All of those recipes that I couldn’t fit in on weekends because they were too time consuming, I now have plenty of time for. It’s brilliant. So, let’s take a look In My Kitchen and see what’s contributing to the storm.

In my November Kitchen…

jar of dijon mustard; container of dried figs

…are mustard and figs. In one of Gretchen’s posts (Feeding My 3 Sons), she talked about enjoying a fig mustard on her travels and it set my mind ticking. I decided to have a go at making some so I went for a Dijon mustard that wouldn’t overwhelm the flavour of the figs. I had never heard of Amora brand but according to the jar, they are ‘de #1 perferre la Francais’, the number one choice in France. I simply chopped some figs into the mustard with the tiniest amount of honey. It was delicious with pork chops.

 

In my kitchen…

large crisp bread from Ikea

…are some rye crisp breads. Warning – do not buy these, even as a joke! I bought this very large wheel of very large crisp breads from the home of Swedish furniture for our party in July. I thought they would be amusing served beside a dip but they never made it out of the pantry so now I have these gigantic (water thin cracker in shot for size comparison) crispbreads to eat. I don’t mind them but they are a little bland. I’ve whizzed some up to use as breadcrumbs and made ‘Weet Bix Slice’, substituting these for the cereal. It tastes great – just like any other chocolate slice. Problem solved.

 

In my kitchen…

tin of quince paste

…a large tin of quince paste or ‘marmelada’, in Portuguese. As quinces don’t grow in Queensland, I can’t make my own quince paste and to be honest, if they did grow here, I probably wouldn’t anyway. Much as I love Maggie Beer’s version, this is by far and away the most cost-effective way of buying quince paste, from the local deli. This tin is a whopping 600g and cost less than $6. Once opened, I store the paste in a plastic takeaway container in the vegetable crisper where it will keep for well over 12 months.

 

In my kitchen…

ice cream scoop

…is an ice cream scoop. This simple, old fashioned scoop was an acquisition from an op shop on our recent road trip to Bundaberg. It was an astounding 10c. I have been revisiting home made ice cream recently and you need a sturdy scoop once it’s been in the freezer a day or so. This one is perfect. Follow this link to see my recipe for my fabulous, yes FABULOUS, velvety mulberry ice cream.

 

In my kitchen…

a tin of smoked parika

…is a tin of smoked paprika. I can’t get enough of it so am always needing to re-stock. Usually I buy a different brand, the one with the groovy 60’s couple with the massive sunglasses on the tin (I’m sure you know the one) but they were all out. So I’ve gone classy this time around.

 

In my kitchen…

bottle of orange blossom water

…is a bottle of orange blossom water. I recently included a small amount in a baked cheese cake to lighten and cut the richness. A bottle of this chilled in the fridge elevates summer desserts. Lightly sprinkle over a fruit platter and garnish with chopped mint to elevate provide a floral hint of the Middle East.

So that’s what’s cooking in my kitchen. Thanks to Liz from Good Things for hosting our monthly IMK round up. It’s never to soon to join in the monthly get together. You can jump in or out at any time. We’d love to see what’s happening in your kitchen too.

34 comments… add one
  • Beck @ Goldenpudding November 1, 2016, 8:47 pm

    How funny Fiona, I have a packet of exactly the same crisp bread in my pantry too! I might try the crushing up trick too 🙂

    • Fiona Ryan November 3, 2016, 9:30 am

      They taste fine but there is just so much of it. The ‘weet bix slice’ turned out well – I crushed them with a rolling pin to replicate the effect of crushed weet bix.

  • Francesca November 2, 2016, 7:38 am

    Fiona, No, you’ve gone classy and deserted the hipster couple on the Spanish Pimenton tin. Things will never be the same in your kitchen. Orange blossom wate r on a fruit salad, now that’s an excellent idea.

    • Fiona Ryan November 3, 2016, 9:31 am

      Temporarily classy Francesca. I’ll be looking for those hipsters again, soon enough.

  • Tandy | Lavender and Lime November 2, 2016, 1:54 pm

    I’m not so sure about mustard and figs. I must put some orange blossom water into the fridge. Great idea.

    • Fiona Ryan November 3, 2016, 9:32 am

      It’s the mixture of sweet/salty/savoury that makes it taste good.

  • Sherry m November 2, 2016, 5:01 pm

    Ooh we have similar things in our kitchens. I have lots of smoked paprika and a big bottle of orange water too. Love the cute icecream scoop.

    • Fiona Ryan November 3, 2016, 9:33 am

      The ice cream scoop has been very helpful these past weeks as I also made some raspberry ripple. No moving parts so less chance of it breaking!

  • Amanda November 2, 2016, 6:20 pm

    Now you’ve reminded me – I’m out of orange blossom water. I’d never thought to keep it in the fridge!
    Those rye crisps are enormous, but isn’t it funny how much better everything is with chocolate? 😉

    • Fiona Ryan November 3, 2016, 9:34 am

      Every IMK has a popular item and it seems that orange blossom water is the golden child this time around. Chocolate hides a multitude of sins.

    • sherry from sherrys pickings November 17, 2016, 9:13 pm

      i tend to keep everything in the fridge here in sunny brisbane. you just never know how long things will last in the heat and humidity.

      • Fiona Ryan November 22, 2016, 9:43 am

        Absolutely Sherry. My Sriracha is a case in point – still perfectly serviceable but is a dark, dark brown in the bottle as it’s stored in the cupboard.

  • Liz Posmyk (Good Things) November 2, 2016, 7:38 pm

    Ha, those gigantic crisp breads. Amazing. Enjoy your retirement, Fiona, but beware the cooking up a storm if it involves much cake. The kilos tend to pile on! Thank you for the very kind shout out and for giving us a peek into your kitchen x

    • Fiona Ryan November 3, 2016, 9:36 am

      Probably only a temporary retirement Liz as I need to fill in the time until Anthony retires but yes, I’m enjoying it. I fear the kilos have already piled on but my around it is to gift and invite, to share the burden ; )

  • Mae November 3, 2016, 7:08 am

    In my experience, Amora is the standard grocery brand of mustard in France. Some of the others are more expensive.

    Smoked paprika has become one of my favorites too. I use it often in place of hotter chili powder to get flavor but not blow anyone’s head off! It’s fun seeing what is in your kitchen and I like all the other IMK posts. Mine is here:
    http://maefood.blogspot.com/2016/11/my-kitchen-november-2016.html

    best… mae at maefood.blogspot.com

    • Fiona Ryan November 3, 2016, 9:50 am

      Hello Mae – it’s a big jar of mustard so I knew it was probably a family fave. It’s quite strong but I like mustard so will have no trouble getting through it. Thanks for visiting. I will certainly swing past your own blog. cheers

  • Celia November 3, 2016, 9:42 am

    You know, I couldn’t be arsed making quince paste either – I always end up with a very gritty result. Pretty sure I’m doing something wrong, but no idea what it is, and you’re right, the stuff in tins is ridiculously cheap and very good! You’re brave, I’ve never bought food from the home of Swedish furniture. Hmm. Actually maybe I did, but I think it might have been a fish paste in a tube that went straight into the bin after tasting. 😉 xx

    • Fiona Ryan November 3, 2016, 9:52 am

      There are a few good things from the Swedish furniture shop – lingonberry jam and elderflower cordial (perfect for cocktails). Funny you should mention that about the fish paste. My mum was recently in Scandanavia and bought home a couple of tubes that she had lugged around. I broke the news to her that you can get it a the furniture shop!

  • Johanna @ Green Gourmet Giraffe November 3, 2016, 11:52 am

    It is a long time since I have enjoyed checking out your kitchen and it is great to be back as I have been amused and informed – I love seeing how others use pantry items such as orange blossom water – and am curious how you use quince paste. That cracker is amusing and I love smoked paprika too and have to stop myself keeping those groovy tins you mention!

    • Fiona Ryan November 3, 2016, 5:36 pm

      Hi Johanna – I’ve still been doing IMKs but they never seemed to get added. Good to see you back. I use the quince paste with cheese boards but as I think you are a vegan, that’s probably not your style. I also use it as a glaze on some European style cakes. I too have had to give myself a severe talking to so I don’t hoard the tins.

  • Maree November 4, 2016, 7:31 pm

    Well guess who’s going to check out that mulberry ice cream recipe? How could I resist! I’ve never bought food in ‘The Furniture Shop’, apart from some lollies one day and they were awful, didn’t even make it home before I chucked them. Interesting about the orange blossom water, I had rose-water. Love the tablecloth the scoop is sitting on. 🙂

    • Fiona Ryan November 14, 2016, 9:02 am

      The table cloth is a length of batik purchased in Bali several years ago. It’s the only thing I buy when I visit so I have quite a collection.

  • Kim | a little lunch November 9, 2016, 11:30 am

    Fiona, I love how ingredients make the rounds on IMK — by chance, circumstance, or creative adaptation. We’re so on the same page! Your (and Gretchen’s) fig mustard sounded like a wonderful side. IMK, I’d dip the figs into the mustard and just eat ’em… whatever works! LOL at your furniture store find, too… I’ve been experiencing the same phenomenon lately. 😉

    • Fiona Ryan November 14, 2016, 9:04 am

      Hi Kim – thanks for swinging past. I know it’s been a roller coaster year for you so a little IMK down time hopefully gives a little respite. cheers!

  • Marcellina November 10, 2016, 7:46 am

    Nice to meet up with someone so close to home! Yes, there are a lot of lovely things we can’t grow in our climate! I love quince paste too. 10c for an icecream scoop! That’s amazing! Thanks for the peek!

    • Fiona Ryan November 14, 2016, 9:05 am

      Hard to complain about a 10c ice cream scoop. They had lots of 10c items in that shop but I didn’t go wild as a lifetime of 10c items finds my drawers crowded and over stocked! And, the mangoes are here…. so that take quince growers!

  • Miss Food Fairy November 10, 2016, 5:15 pm

    WOW Fiona, so many gorgeous things in your kitchen this month for IMK. My favourite has to be your smoky paprika, it’s one of my favourite spices 🙂 Great find on the ice cream scoop – I do love a good bargain! Hope you’re enjoying your time off cooking & exploring lots of good things.
    https://missfoodfairy.com/2016/11/04/in-my-kitchen-november-2016/

    • Fiona Ryan November 14, 2016, 9:00 am

      I have to be careful with the paprika as I can get a bit heavy handed. Yes, the time off is wonderful.

  • Liz November 14, 2016, 9:28 am

    It’s wonderful reading all the IMK posts, I’ve missed them. I am envious of the ice cream scoop, the new ones don’t really work that well and get discolored in the dishwasher. That one looks as if it will really work, even on very hard ice cream.

    • Fiona Ryan November 15, 2016, 4:55 pm

      The scoop is very tough so perfect for home made that goes like a rock. No more bent spoons!

  • Gretchen November 15, 2016, 2:32 am

    Funny you mention the fig mustard, I’m putting it on a pork tenderloin tonight! Good to know I can make it myself too once we run out. As for the Swedish furniture store, you are so right in your comment to Celia about the elderflower cordial being great for cocktails. Last time there I bought 6 bottles, stocking up you know. Of course that was before we had a bumper crop of elderflowers this year. The ice cream scoop is indeed ideal for homemade, enjoy.

    • Fiona Ryan November 15, 2016, 4:54 pm

      We;ll never see Elderflowers here so I’m happy the Swedes can be an alternate supplier ; )

  • Sandra November 16, 2016, 3:39 pm

    Elderflower grows in Brisbane quite well so you could DIY, although I rather suspect it like quince paste it’s much easier to choose the commercial product. Must try the fig mustard, we love Gretchen’s beer mustard.

    • Fiona Ryan November 22, 2016, 9:41 am

      Really? Let me know where you see them and maybe I’ll come for a forage one spring (maybe).

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