discovering a simpiler life

discovering a simpiler life

Saturday, 2 January 2016

In my kitchen ~ January 2016

Whooooo here we are all finished the Christmas and New Year hoopla for another year and it's time to look at what's been happening in my kitchen which is a series now being hosted by the lovely Maureen from orgasmic chef  who has taken over the reigns from Celia who is taking a break.  Grab yourself a cuppa or a vino and settle in for a peek into what's been happening in my kitchen.


We had a wonderful Christmas day but it was around 33c (91f) which I could be called crazy for doing a traditionally hot cooked lunch but it was worth it and the air conditioned kitchen helped.
The feast started with these puff oysters and prawns.  These oysters are one of my favourite ways to eat them.  You place a teaspoon or so of garlic butter onto the oyster and then cover them with puff pastry and bake in a hot oven, 200c, for 15 minutes or until golden - the photo has them uncooked. Ah-mazing!!
Sorry there isn't any more photo's from the big day but it's hard to host, cook, clear, drink, laugh, eat and be expected to take photos!! I am only one woman ;)
I was given these darling salt and pepper shakers all the way from Dublin from a dear friend who travelled recently - aren't they just the cutest!
It wouldn't be my kitchen at Christmas if there weren't these shortbread.  I traditionally keep them plain but I had a little helper who glittered some up for me.
I also make baby fruit mince tarts that are gifted to special friends as they are a labour of love....psst see these pretty plates above and below, they are from a local artist friend of mine Louise at Tipsy glass.
I made up a big batch of sausage rolls for the freezer for those nights when you don't know what day it is nor do you have the energy to think about cooking dinner.  I pack mine with lots of blitzed up vegetables so I feel less guilty.
This month I had a go at Fiona's apple scrap jelly which was both a success and a disaster.  I first made it, boiled it for ages, sterilised all the jars, bottled and after it cooled I realised it wasn't set!!! Back into the pot to boil it again, wash everything only to take my eyes off it and it boiled over onto the stove so when it was all said and done I had 4 jars!!!! But I will be making it again :) I loved it with cheese and biscuits but my daughter loves it on hot toast.
I got this tart case for $1 from one of the op shops here - what a bargain!! I'm yet to christen it but plans are in place.
and lastly it wouldn't be in my kitchen if I didn't share some of my crochet - this is one of 4 projects I have on the go at the moment.  I'm loving playing with different stitches.  This blanket will be for my bed and I'm just coming close to half way - this is around 30 hours so far!!! Another labour of love :)

Thanks for coming over! Until next month, ciao Jan x

35 comments :

  1. I love what's in your kitchen this month and that crocheted blanket is amazing. What a lot of work. You'll have years of pleasure from it.

    I know what you mean about cooking, hostessing, entertaining, serving, eating, drinking, cleaning up and then realising you don't have enough photos or the ones you have are fuzzy. :)

    Happy New Year!

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    1. I can't wait to be snuggling with it Maureen....hahaha photos are sometimes the last thing on my mind!! Happy new year to you too xxxx

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  2. Those sausage rolls look yummy....what do you put in them...apart from veggies...I've got some puff pastry in the freezer at the moment. The little salt & pepper shakers are beautiful and your Christmas Table looks lovely. Regards Kathy A, Brisbane

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    1. Heya Kathy :) I use pork or chicken mince - 500g, and to that I blitz up an onion, 2 garlic cloves, 2 carrots, 1 zucchini and a stalk of celery if I have it, 1 egg, a handful of breadcrumbs, a squirt or 2 of tomato sauce and chopped parsley. let me know how you go, oh and of course salt and pepper. Happy new year to you xxx

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  3. Oh I love that oyster idea, will have to try it! Happy new year!

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    1. I hope you enjoy them as much as we all do!! Very yummy :)

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  4. How lovely to have a mention in your Christmas story, Jan! Thankyou from Tipsglass.com.au

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    1. You are so welcome Louie - I just love your work xxx

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  5. Happy New Year!!! Your Christmas table setting looks lovely. Are you making the blanket up as you go along? I look at it and I see so many ends!!! I have to get some more sausage rolls made up and in the freezer - at least it's cold here and I'm not sweltering in 40C heat like you :)

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    1. Thanks Nancy :) Yes I'm just making the blanket up as I go which is tricky with the stitch count but nothing a good border won't remedy!!! SO MANY ENDS!!! I'm trying to do some as I go. Are you working on anything? x

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  6. Good to know that you got an elf from Santa to help you decorate the shortbread. Every home should have one! Those little salt and paper shakers from Ireland are darling things, and I love the colours and patterns in your crocheting.

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  7. What a delicious sounding Christmas Jan!! And I know what you mean about taking pics as well as trying to cook etc. If only we could clone ourselves for the day (note: Christmas idea for 2016 ;)). A very Happy New Year to you and your family!! xxx

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    1. Thanks so much lovely Lorraine - it was a delicious Christmas indeed!! Happy New Year to you too :)x

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  8. Happy New Year to you & your family Jan - I have never heard of puff oysters before, I may have to try them one day (thanks for the tip!) I love sausage rolls, they're great to keep in the freezer for those nights you can't be bothered cooking! #IMK

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    1. Happy New Year to you and your family too Nicole! You must try the oysters, very, very addictive!! x

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  9. It's all so lovely! I especially like the mince tarts and salt and pepper shakers. The shakers are beautiful and the tarts are so pretty I would have to sit and admire them before taking the first bite.

    I didn't take any photos of our seafood dinner on Christmas eve, the ham dinner Christmas day, the cookies and candy - a combination of being busy and absent minded. I don't think I ever thought to take photos.

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    1. Hahaha I could hardly eat the tarts they were so adorable Robin!! Thanks for letting me know about your garlic scapes - I'm very curious about them!! Jan x

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  10. In awe of your crochet. What a beautiful Christmas table setting too. Happy New Year

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  11. I'm very jealous of your thrifted pie tin Jan.....I just bought one before Christmas to make Jamie Oliver's Bonkers bread and butter pudding using Panetone instead of bread...it was delicious...wishing you all the best for a lovely 2016.

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    1. I couldn't believe my luck Suzie when I found that tart tin!! I'll have to have a look at Jamies pudding - sounds yummy!! Happy New Year to you and your family xxx

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  12. What a beautiful Christmas table. Neat idea for the oysters as well, I'll have to try to remember that. I completely understand lack of holiday photos, the one or tw I took were of dinner which by then it was dark so lighting was horrible. One person can only d s much and it sounds like you already did the work of more than one! Happy New Year!

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    1. Thanks so much Gretchen :) The oysters are well worth remembering!! Happy New Year to you and your family too xxx

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  13. I love your In My Kitchen feature this month! Those plates from your friend are simply gorgeous. So are the pastries on them.

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  14. Hi Jan, Love the look of those oysters. What a great idea.

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  15. What a mouth-watering post. ALL of your goodies look amazing. You had some lucky guests for the holiday season.

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    1. I wish I could have it all over again Jennifer!!! x

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  16. Oh Jan, I'm drooling at the thought of of those oysters! And that crochet blanket is simply stunning, love it! Here is to a happy and healthy 2016 xx

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    1. Oh you are sweet Ania - I fear that blanket could take a long, long time to complete!!! Jan x

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  17. What a lovely holiday table (and menu), Jan. Sometimes you have to reserve moments for yourself and your guests, never mind "potential photos" your blog audience. (I totally understand.) Your beautiful blanket will be worth the effort, too -- absolutely gorgeous! Happy New Year.

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    1. Thanks so much Kim - Happy New Year to you too xxx

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  18. sooo many fab things in your kitchen Jan. i love your blanket. My sister crocheted me one for an important birthday which is gorgeous and took her many hours. i love the glassware made by your friend. lovely xmas table, and the sausage rolls....and those salt and pepper shakers. i love it all!

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