In my kitchen, May 2017

It has been a glorious few weeks of Autumn in Sydney.  Beautiful warm blue sky days and slightly crisp evenings.  It’s been so mild that a couple of tomato plants we had left in the ground have gotten confused and started producing tomatoes again; our basil plant looks like we’re in the prime of summer.  My hen friends have loved the sun, scratching out comfortable spots and lying down and sunbaking, I half expect them to call out for a round of Pina Coladas.

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Meanwhile, in my kitchen, is chocolate left over from Easter.  The mountain is considerably smaller than a few weeks ago and the Small People are slowly consuming it.  I plead guilty to taking the occasional little egg from their stash.

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In my kitchen is some Italian smoked scarmorza, a gift from a thoughtful friend.  Scarmorza is an Italian cheese, similar to mozzarella. She said she’s struggled to find a smoked one in Australia as good as those in Italy; this one was pretty damn good. She used hers in a lasagne,  I’ve got some yummy plans for this one for a pasta dish too.

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More cheese….a beautiful freshly cut chunk of parmiggiano reggiano from the Italian deli; it will be used in lots of dishes.

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I also bought some green lentils at another local deli, these are type of lentils I prefer.  One of these days it will cool down and lentils are great for winter soups.

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In my kitchen are “mustazzoli”.  These are very traditional ginger and honey biscuits.  They can be made chewy or ultra hard.  Typically, they are sold and Italian Festivals and Fairs; my father-in-law bought them at a festival recently.  The Marito loves them, I’m not terribly partial.

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Tidying up the other day, I found a recipe for a limoncello cream that my cousin in Calabria had jotted down on a piece of paper for me years ago….now I need to find the other post it note with the method!

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In my kitchen is some deliciousness from Mamma Rosa.  They are crumbed artichoke.  She bought them over ready for me to cook.  She slices the artichokes, gently poaches them in stock, then allows them to cool and crumbs them. Then they are lightly fried.  I adore them.

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I’ve been experimenting with hydration (water) levels in my bread, gradually working my way higher.  When I first started baking I was using circa 55% hydration (ie 55% of the weight of flour in water), this loaf is 70%.  It is much harder to shape but ends up with a better result.

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And finally in my kitchen is a tiramisu I made today to take to work tomorrow (recipe here).  The Marito looked on somewhat jealously and asked if he was getting one too. So I made him a mini one.

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What’s happening in your kitchen? Sherry from Sherry’s Pickings has taken over hosting this monthly blog link up which I so enjoy (thanks Sherry!).  Have a peek into kitchens around the world!


12 thoughts on “In my kitchen, May 2017

  1. Sherry Mackay

    hi and thanks for contributing to IMK this month. i love the look of that parmesan; so fresh and tangy. and your chooks. so adorable. are they bantams? there used to be an italian place near us that served deep fried artichokes. oh so yum. i haven’t found another restaurant that serves them. one day….. see you next month…cheers!

  2. Mae

    Your French green lentils are good for soup, as you say, but also can be useful in a number of other recipes. I cooked some last night with browned onions and spice, and they were delicious as a hot side dish. These quick-cooking legumes are also great in a number of salads. (No, I don’t work for any mysterious lentil promotion agency, just happen to be thinking about them!)

    Nice post! Best… mae at

  3. ladyredspecs

    Your bread looks wonderful. I know how messy it must be to handle but that amazing crumb makes it worthwhile. I haven’t made tiramisu for ages, must change that. Where there’s a will there’s a way to make limoncello,,,

  4. Kim Bultman

    Josephine, I’ve never had a crumbed artichoke before and I can only imagine how delicious they must be. Have to try that! Smiling over the thought of you serving pina coladas to your chooks. :) Your cheeses sound tasty, too. Do you save the reggiano rind to simmer in tomato sauce? I’ve read that it adds a lot of flavor. The handwritten recipe from your friend is a treasure! Hope you find the second half! xo

  5. Francesca

    See that crack along the top of the Parmigiano Reggiano- break that off and put in in my mouth, followed by some of Mama Rosa’s fried artichokes. Yum. Love a little Scamorza but yes, some can be too bland and soapy.

  6. Gretchen

    What delicious looking cheeses. And fried artichokes, that sounds fantastic! Thanks for the reminder that it’s been far too long since I’ve made tiramisu.


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