discovering a simpiler life

discovering a simpiler life

Saturday, 9 May 2015

Apple flower tarts

Brrrr we're in the middle of an early winter weather hit in Autumn and I'm loving it.  Perfect weather to have the oven on and snuggle in and cook.
I fell in love when I first saw these adorable apple tarts.  
Even better was a cook with me challenge hosted by the lovely Lorraine for me to join in and make them.  If you do feel the urge to join you in have a few days to get your skates on, all the details are on the post link above.  They actually are quite easy, although you need to take your time when rolling them as they are slippery suckers.  If I'm honest, next time I would use a red apple and maybe coat them in the jam as well perhaps.  Either way, they are so pretty and perfect for impressing any wonderful Mum this mothers day - they are a present to myself!! :)
I won't go into the hows and wherefores, just follow to see Lorraines recipe and fab video tutorial - you really can't go wrong.  Here's my attempt:
We luckily have a granny smith tree housed in the chicken run.  
It's not been the best year for them but I'm hoping my ladies will clean up the coddling moth and next year's crop will be stella.

I used quince jam given to me from a friend as the 'glue'

Happy, happy mothers day to all the mums out there - it's the hardest job in the world if you care about doing it well - so take a bow and an offering of one of my tightest squeezy hugs.

Ciao, Jan x

Sunday, 3 May 2015

Christening my baby

I was so excited to share my new arrival the other day but with all that was going on it was only today that I actually got to christen my new baby - KromillA - thanks Kirsty!

I had the perfect recipe up my sleeve - Susan's lemon zinger loaf cake.  As luck would have it I have a dealer as a good friend - a dealer of lemons! Oh how lovely to have them back in my kitchen - nothing beats having a bowl full of them to play with.

Wowzers, I've been slumming it with my old dodgy pre-loved cheap mixer....This KitchenAid is a miracle worker.  Not only does it look fantastic on my bench ;) but it really, really gets all of the ingredients mixed up in a flash.  My old red baron needed extra help as it never mixed in all the ingredients at the bottom so it sort of put me off using it - but not now! I'm already making a list and hoping I can feed many a sweet or bready treat.

So, how about them lemons.

Ciao, Jan x

Saturday, 2 May 2015

In my kitchen ~ May 2015

There has been lots going on in my kitchen this past month, the usual cooking adventures but I'm thrilled to share a little kitchen reno we did (cough, cough ok Mr. GW needs all the credit but I am the ideas person and he then is the practical follow through person :)) and some very exciting purchases I've been waiting years to get which makes for one happy Jan.  
I'm tagging along with other devotees of the "In my kitchen" series hook up with the lovely Celia from Fig Jam and Lime Cordial.  Pop over for a look at others kitchens from all over the globe, it's really quite something!

I've tried to be as frugal as I can just to try and push myself to create something tasty and delicious out of nothing - saving money is also a motivation but I really wanted to get back out of the supermarket every few days habit, so I thought I'd share some of my tight arse treats.  And, if I'm really honest, I've been feeling really poo due to a change in medication which again isn't working or helping my cause but the one thing that gets me up is the thought of cooking something for my hungry family.  It also helps me pay for the extravagant additions to my kitchen this month ;) 

In my kitchen where these bastardised Anzac biscuits.  I used the normal recipe you can find here but I added some of my own spins.  I used chia, flaxseeds, currants and peppitas, some peach leather I needed to use up and a few pieces of chocolate rougly chopped.  I added only half the amount of oats, used agave syrup instead of golden syrup and lastly  used melted coconut oil instead of butter.  I added a few tablespoons more of flour and coconut oil to made a moist 'dough' due to the extra dry ingredients.  So maybe they aren't really an Anzac but a modern spin on one!!  Either way they were scrummy.

In my kitchen has been these heavenly gluten free thick and chewy chocolate chip cookies.  I initially made these for a friend of my daughters who is coeliac but I've now been making them just for us as they are the perfect cookie in my book ~ danger!
In my kitchen was my first ever spaghetti squash that I was gifted.  On expert advice, I sliced it in half and popped it into a baking tray that had water in it and baked/steamed it for 40 minutes.  It was really tasty with a lashing of butter and lots of salt and pepper.
The seeds I washed and roasted to have as an afternoon snack - tossed in sea salt and a hint of cayenne pepper made them lip smackingly morish.  I'll be doing this to my pumpkin seeds from now on too.

In my kitchen I've been making lots of my tomato and onion pie as luck would have it we still have loads of tomatoes coming in.  We have a back room that gets all the sun that has been a dream for rippening the green buggers that just won't on the vine.  I've also made 3 pie dishes worth and frozen them to have on a rainy day.
I got the round enamel dishes from the Salvo's for 20 cents a pop - love them and love a bargain!
In my kitchen are freshly dug spuddies and we've been having them in lots of things - there's hardly a day we don't eat potatoes come to think of it.  I saw this post here that made me think differently about the peelings that the worms usually get.  They have now become our little tid bit of an entree - tossed in some extra virgin olive oil and a good lash of salt and pepper they are make great crispy potato skins.

In my kitchen has been these kohlrabi leaves I've been pinching from the plant before the bulb is ready.  My fav way to use them boil them quickly in water, drain well and toss in coconut oil, a touch of chilli and salt and pepper.  I do the same with beetroot leaves too.
In my kitchen has been lots of bread baking - above a plaited white loaf and below my trusty no knead bread

I've tried my hand at my first ever focaccia using this recipe from 
Silvia Colloca's blog with fantastic success I'm very pleased to say and I'll be making it again as soon as I can trust myself not to inhale it.
In my kitchen has been lots of soup for the freezer.  With the colder weather I usually have soup for lunch each day.  This is the beginning of vegetable soup cooked with chicken stock, a parmesan rind and the left over corn cob that is taken out once the vegies are tender.  I added some pasta, rice and homemade tomato passata.  It made 10 serves for a few $$'s.
Not making it into my kitchen has been these radish's.  Mr. GW and I eat as garden snacks and give the spoils to our girls greedy girls below.
In my kitchen has been the most amazing eggs.  Set your eyes on the 90 gram baby below!!! It was a double yolker.

 My kitchen went from this to.....
to this! Ta-dah!  We weren't planning a kitchen reno quite yet, but on our weekly trip to Bunnings, I found this stainless -anti-fingerproof(!!!) cabinet for a bargain price.  It's for a man cave (hence the anti-fingerproof stainless I think) but it's perfect for my kitchen.  Mr. GW changed the wheels though as the original ones were very large (they are to be repurposed onto my wine barrels for the courtyard ;) waste not want not).It's not a perfect fit but it will be once the whole kitchen is re-done sometime in the next few years...or if I see the right thing it could be next week!
In my kitchen is my new baby.  I've been waiting years for her.  My very own KitchenAid!! (squeel!!)  I haven't named her yet - any ideas?  Kitchenaid have a deal on at the moment for Mothers day, giving you a free $300 food processor so that sealed it's fate.

and finally, in my kitchen is my new second hand camera!!  I'm thrilled with it too but I just have to work out how to use it so my photos will benefit.

That's enough excitement for one month!
Thanks for stopping by, I love getting your comments and visiting as many of the fellow In my kitchen contributors as possible.

Ciao, Jan x
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