It’s once again time for In My Kitchen and as per usual this is a collection of things from the past month — as seen over on Instagram — in loosely interpreted categories and no particular order. As always I’m linking up with Celia for IMK.
I styled a photo simply to rant, this should not surprise you too much.
If you want the full story it’s here on the original IG post, the important take out points are as follows: a cup of f-off weighs about 7 ounces and oh internet you make me laugh.
Late last year, the evening before we flew out for a 5 week holiday, I moved everything remotely fresh from the fridge to the freezer. Milk, kale, pesto were all a given but what to do with half a dozen eggs? The alternative was tossing them so into a zip-top bag and into the freezer they went.
Now I’ve always known you could freeze egg whites (mum used to do that after she put the yolks in my baby bottle… it was the 70’s, I lived, let’s move on) but whole?
So what happened — well all of them cracked but none of them exploded and I count that as a win. To use them I just let them sit on the benchtop until thawed-ish and cook as I would fresh.
The yolks turn a bit, gummier, than fresh but other than that, perfect eggs in a pinch. Use this info as you wish.
I love seeing where people shoot so I figured it was time to share mine again…
This is my usual setup spot. The window faces just north of east and is pretty well behaved until 3-ish during the winter and quite a bit later than that in summer. From this pic you’d think I was all professional with a tripod, although on most days I’m more likely found free-handing with my elbow buried into my ribs…
Also, I stand on chairs, regularly. Usually sans tripod, hovering precariously over the board, camera in one hand reflector in the other. All in the name of the shot, as you do.
Every so often things move into the kitchen. This window is directly opposite the lounge room one and the light pretends like it’s good but isn’t really. However when there is a high proportion of flying flour it just makes sense.
Spiced hot chocolate has been getting me through most evenings. What ever milks happen to be in the fridge (usually a combo of oat, almond and coconut) go into a pan with a spoonful of either barley malt syrup, rice syrup or honey, a spoonful of cacao, a dash of chipotle, cinnamon and ginger, and a teeny pinch of sea salt. It all gets frothed with a $4 frother thing and makes me happy.
I’ve been making ad-hoc fruit crumbles to chase away winter. It’s almost working. In other news I’m not a fan of the cold.
The other night RJ asked for Beer Can Chicken and Blueberry Cheesecake. He didn’t think I’d really make the cheesecake but a few hours later we had this. And then had it again for breakfast. The best news is that in order to blog it I have to make it at least one more time, how very convenient.
I rarely take cake orders any more but each year about now RJ’s cousin rings and I can’t turn her down. This gorgeous thing is quite possibly the best gluten-free, dairy-free chocolate cake ever. Another one I have to make again in order to shoot it properly, darn.
Cupboard and Crisper
I usually avoid off-season imported produce but this day I was missing home and hating winter and exorbitantly priced white cherries were the solution.
I ate them standing up at the sink while on the phone to my mom and they were brilliant and I’m ok with that.
Sydney Markets sent me a gorgeous hamper* chock full of winter fruit and veggies.
It sat on the lounge room floor for a few days (so cold in here nothing even wilted) and after days (weeks?) of not cooking much the colours inspired me to get creating. Stay tuned.
We headed to the Good Food & Wine Show (thanks to Barilla) a few weeks ago. When one encounters glittery truffle infused French mustard one must purchase said mustard. Same goes for smoked garlic. Both are simply lovely and will disappear more quickly than I’d like.
Brookfarm is a Australian family business with a macadamia farm on the NSW North Coast. Not only are they great people but they make fabulous products. Their newest addition* — the Brothers Blend — is an addictive combination of Australian-grown tree nuts baked with macadamia oil, sea salt and a touch of maple syrup (5.8g sugar per 100g; <.05g fructose). Please take them away from me and put them on a high shelf…
A couple of spice and sauce kits* from The Spice Tailor appeared in my PO Box recently. The ingredient list is really clean and as we pretty much avoid all takeout it’s been ages since we’ve had Indian, so this was a bit exciting. After trying out the Rogan Josh the other night I can attest to both the ease of use and brilliant flavours.
I used half for chicken, half for a combo of mushrooms and celeriac, and ‘cleaned’ the pan with some green veggies. Definitely looking forward to trying the others.
There are quite a few things that cross my path each day. Some jump out at me in the course of everyday life, some are sent to me for editorial consideration. I look at everything two ways. First — do I find it interesting for myself, and second — will other people find them interesting.
As such, I was recently asked to met with the owners of Simply Honest Foods and while I was a bit hesitant (their product range is based on white flour and sugar which I still try to avoid) I went for a chat anyway. So why am I sharing these if it’s not really stuff I eat? Well for starters the owners were simply lovely people. Second they have done an amazing job at creating a product that is produced entirely in Australia with nearly all Australian products at a price point that is actually affordable. And third they are using only real ingredients — no preservatives, no fillers, no numbers.
Some people like to keep cake mix in their cupboard — for convenience or the same result every time or perhaps a lack of general baking supplies — and if you’re one of those people wouldn’t you rather support a small Aussie family business than a multinational chemical laden one? Now I haven’t baked anything from the packs* (RJ’s workmates will end up with something soon) so I can’t speak on the result but I’ll certainly update this when I do. If you want to try them for yourself they are apparently being ranged in IGA.
Books & General Miscellany
Volume 2 of the Rediscover the Pear cookbook* is now out. It’s available during July from Woolies, free with the purchase of 1 kg of pears, and at newsagents after that.
It’s time for Mushroom Mania again! To celebrate all things mushroom The Australian Mushroom Growers are giving you a chance to win one of 30 $100 gift cards*.
To enter simply snap a photo of a cafe or restaurant mushroom meal and share it on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook with the campaign tags. All the details are here, now go out and find some mushies and get snapping!
That’s all folks
Make sure to pop over to check out the other IMK posts — there is always great stuff.
* Asterisked items were gifted to me in accordance with my editorial policy. All opinions are fully my own. Supercalafragalisticexpialadoshus. Beam me up Scotty.
OMG that truffle infused French mustard looks divine! I missed the Food Show 🙁 Determined to make it next year!
xx Vanessa (themondayissue.com)
The Life of Clare says
I love this post! Such a joy to read! I think I need to get a tripod, and I agree that sometimes you’ve got to treat yourself!
Oh Truffle infused mustard! I hope they are in Brisbane in October! Yes, you do look very professional, I’m still taking photos with my iPhone 🙂 but I’ve only just started… All your food looks so delicious and I during summer I am addicted to cherries, so sometimes in winter I do allow myself at least one serve of imported ones! Thanks so much for sharing this months. Liz x
Jane @ Shady Baker says
Hi JJ, I love a glimpse into your kitchen. I like the idea of shooting where you shoot, how interesting. You are professional with your tripod and reflector. That box from the Sydney Market is impressive. Your cakes look superb! x
Hi JJ! Lovely peek into your kitchen, thanks for sharing! 🙂
What a fabulous hamper of fruit and veg – very inspiring.
leaf (the indolent cook) says
Your cakes look delicious! And I just love that gorgeous hamper full of fresh produce, lucky you!
Claire @ Claire K Creations says
You are hilarious. How did I miss that instagram post?! Love the sneak peek at your photo set up too. Mine is pretty similar minus the fancy backdrops. Must get on that soon. Oh how I love that all your in my kitchen photos are so pretty and styled.
Tandy | Lavender and Lime says
What a fantastic post. I make hot chocolate with barley malt syrup as well. Now I will add some spice to mine. Thanks for the inspiration 🙂
Ah JJ, you mad thing, you make me laugh. So, a cup of f-off weighs 7oz, could you please give that to me in metric? 😉 I’ve never even contemplated freezing whole eggs, and I really, really loved seeing your photo set-ups. Reaffirmed my thinking that the best shots ever are always taken under natural light! And aren’t those $4 whizzers the best thing? 🙂
Kim | a little lunch says
JJ, I’m not fond of the cold either (which is why we moved to Oklahoma), but even in the middle of summer (here,) your cocoa with chipotle appeals greatly. Never heard of freezing whole eggs, but you give me hope — and mushroom Mania sounds wonderful!