I’m not a Winter girl, so it is with a little sadness I’m typing June. Bring back Spring and Summer! Somehow, my rogue tomatoes I mentioned last month are still growing. When I went to pick a bundle the plant was even still flowering – the tomato plant is clearly confused. Here’s what has been going on in the Napoli kitchen.
In my kitchen you’ll find these cute little boxes my darling boys made me for Mother’s Day. They suggested I keep them by the bed for my trinkets.
In my kitchen you’ll find mandarins (and a few lemons), a sure sign that Winter is here. These are from my father-in-law’s tree; over coming months there will be more bowls of mandarins than I know what to do with from various family members. Mandarincello, anyone?
A few people have asked about my starter. This is what it looks like after it has been “fed” and is almost bubbly enough to make into a loaf of bread. My starter, La Figlia, is the offspring of Celia’s starter Priscilla, that is eight or so years old.
It makes some lovely airy sourdough loaves. I make bread every Sunday these days.
I had another go at making pasticciotti. Little winners these are. This time I got the custard perfect, and I’m getting better and shaping the pastry into the little moulds, which is a lot trickier than I thought. Now I just have to get the timing exactly right on baking.
The pasticciotti are from a region in Italy called Puglia, which I really want to visit, so I couldn’t help buying this cookbook. It is absolutely beautiful. A lot of the recipes are “cucina povera” – poor kitchen – style, which is the kind of food I grew up with. I notice a lot of the recipes contain broccoli rabe, which you won’t find everywhere. My father used to make us eat this slightly bitter vegetable growing up, as according to him, it “purifies your blood” (though he said that about all green leafy vegetables).
I tried the ricotta cake recipe in the book, though I tweaked it a little as the sugar content seemed too high, and it contained candied fruit which I’m not too keen on. I need to work on my pastry technique and I should have left it in the tin longer to set after cooking but the end result was incredibly delicious. I’ll do a little more tweaking then post the recipe.
One night for dinner I made some tuna and quinoa patties. The original recipe is from the beautiful food blog Chew Town. Hers are Asian inspired; as I did not have coriander or ginger or a red onion handy, I just used parsley and spring onions. I also used flour instead of almond meal. Delicious.
Making these reminded me of some other tuna patties the Marito always loved that I hadn’t made for ages, so I made them on the weekend. These are with capsicum and potato and then crumbed before lightly frying. I whipped up a batch of burger buns, recipe also courtesy of Celia, and we had some great burgers for dinner. My subconscious must have been affected by all the burger pictures for International Burger Day.
How’s your winter kitchen coming along?