Autumn has begun but it’s still warm and balmy in Sydney, after an exceptionally dry Summer. The weather has meant that lots of salads, grilled fish, and omelettes with fresh herbs have been coming out of the kitchen.
In My Kitchen is a monthly link up of kitchens around the world, currently hosted by Sherry at Sherry’s pickings. It has been going for eight years now, started by the lovely Celia at Fig Jam and Lime Cordial. A few things to share from the Napoli kitchen over the last few weeks:
With the new year in full swing it was time to wrestle control of the pantry. A lot of the containers I bought sixteen years ago as a newlywed (sixteen years!) were worse for wear or no longer sealing properly, so it was time for some new containers, and also labels to make it easy to find everything. I ordered a standard pack from Pretty Pantry Labels (product certainly as described!) and a handful of custom ones from The Pantry Label Shop, and we were good to go.
On a recent trip to Carriageworks Markets, I liked the sound of these eggplant ravioli from Pasta Gallery and bought some to try. I served them simply, some baby spinach, semi dried tomatoes, spring onions, olive oil and shaved parmesan. They were delicious.
I also bought these carrots – aren’t the colours glorious?
In my kitchen is a new apron, butcher style, that a generous friend bought for me at a recent cooking night.
I mentioned recently that Mamma Rosa has discovered technology. In her sixties, Mamma Rosa is texting, emailing and YouTubing with the best of them. She loves watching recipe videos in Italian. I discovered that Mamma Rosa and the Small People are now texting each other – pretty much exclusively about food. Mamma Rosa writes in Italian, and the Small People text back in a combination of Italian and English. Their funny little conversations are often about special menu requests (“can you please make us arancini”). One of them was for a batch of “biscotto”, or what the Small People call “crunchy bread”. Mamma Rosa’s feather light biscotto – also often called freselle – is ideal for a snack with any topping – avocado, cheese, ricotta, tomato. We all love it.
Our chooks have been laying well in this warm weather, although we have encountered a couple of stubborn brooders. The girls are over a year old now, so officially “hens” rather than “pullets” and the eggs are getting noticeably bigger. We get a consistent stream of 70 gram plus eggs, except for petite and dainty Grace, who produces corresponding cute petite and dainty eggs. I do have to be careful when I am baking because of the size as it can result in distorted proportions. Don’t tell the others, but I think Rosie’s eggs are my favourite.
I’ve been spending a good bit of time thinking about kitchen layout and other cabinetry for the renovation and build, which is slowly making progress. Hafele have some really clever storage solutions for internal cupboards.
In my kitchen is a great buy from Aldi recently – dual lemon and lime pack! They will be making their way to our new garden. They also had fig plants but these disappeared too quickly.
I hope you all have a lovely March!