In My Kitchen – December 2015

IMG_4497copyIn my kitchen:

Is this fabulous ceramic piece.  It almost looks Christmassy.  We bought it in Positano, Campania, when on an Italian holiday in 2006.  It hangs, unobtrusively, on our kitchen wall but, looking at it now, I think it deserves a more featured position.  It is very well done.

IMG_4508copyIn my kitchen:

Is a tiny bowl we bought on the same trip.  This little bowl hails from Palermo, Sicily.  When I say tiny, I mean tiny.  The diameter is just 6.5cm.  It is hand painted in a traditional Sicilian design.  We also bought a salad bowl and plate in the same design.  We haven’t used it much – there are not many uses for a bowl so small – but still it brings a smile to my face and reminds me of our holiday.  That is the very point of souvenirs so it was a successful purchase.

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In my kitchen:

Is this fabulous cheese board that Maus made.  We are going to a Carols night later in the week and have to take a small present.  Maus made the board to go with the cheese knife as her present.  She has also bought some yummy cheese (not the cheddar in the photo – that is prop value only) to go with it.  I wouldn’t mind getting her present.

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Here is a close up of the knife.  We bought it in from a craft shop in Balingup.  It was hand made by a local craftsman.

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In my kitchen:

Is my first cherry tomato for the season.  I have only ONE plant so hopefully this year I won’t be inundated with cherry tomatoes.  I have pulled up thousands of cherry tomato seedlings.  I really don’t want to be inundated this year.  Ironically, I have planted a few Roma tomato seeds and only one has emerged so there may be a dearth of tomatoes this year.  In a macabre way, I hope so.

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In my kitchen:

Are avocados.  There are more still hanging on the tree.  We pick two every week or so, wait until they ripen, then pick two more.  I have been making a fab avocado smoothie  on which I should do a post.  When these ripen, I think I will.

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In my kitchen:

Is a potato box which Maus made years ago.  It is a little knocked about and stained as it has been well used for years.  It still does the trick …

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Hey, how good does it look with Potato written on the front?  I may put a request in.  I am sure it wouldn’t take her long. 🙂

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In my kitchen:

Is this table cloth that my mum made me many years ago.  My mum was very handy and tried her hand at a lot of hobbies.  I took the table cloth out of the cupboard to use as a back drop for the potato box and then thought “the back drop is noteworthy in its own right.”  I have no idea how old it is – I would say at least 30 years.  My taste in colours hasn’t changed in all those years.  I am still a pink girl and love this combination.

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In my kitchen:

Are four new cookbooks I bought from an Op Shop.  I love Op Shops.  On this day, I bought these four books, six CDs and one DVD.  (We thought we had seven CDs but one turned out to be the movie Shine rather than the soundtrack to Shine) and, a pair of jeans.  All for $24.50.  Most of my purchases looked like they had never been used.  The jeans were a great find. I got a pair of brand new European jeans for $2.50!!   Jeans were half price the day I was there.  What a bargain!  I bought them to wear in the paddock but I might end up doing what Maus did.  Years ago, she wanted some jeans to wear to her woodworking classes so she went to an Op shop to find some.  The shop was in a suburb where a lot of Italian migrants settled.  She bought two pairs of gorgeous Italian jeans.  She declared them too good for her woodworking classes.

But Op shops can be hit and miss.  I was very keen to go back to see what else they had to my liking – Nothing!!  I was devastated.

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In my kitchen:

Is some Saint André triple cream soft cheese.  Friends came around for drinks during the month and brought a little container of it.  It is to die for.  We asked where they got it (the Farmers’ Market in Bunbury) and bought some on our next trip back to Bridgetown.  Here is part of the spiel on it…

Deserving of its reputation as “the heavenly cheese,” St. André might have an angelic façade, but there is no doubt, that it’s actually straight-up sinful. Enchanting and celebratory, inside the downy rind you’ll find a rich center that adds up to 70% butterfat. Seventy percent: a magic number that tells you this is the cheese for an opulent life, an every day delight and decadence. From the coast of France to your table, St. André is lavish and rich enough for the most special occasions, but merits a place on your daily menu.

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In my kitchen:

Are two plates by the South Australian potter, Helen Taylor.  I spied them in a shop in an arcade I used to pass everyday, walking from the train station to my workplace.  They won my heart because of the iris design.  We have irises in the stained glass in our front door and have a couple of pieces of art depicting irises.

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To gather something interesting to write on these plates, I Googled “Helen Taylor which lead me to the site, Identifying Australian pottery 1960 – date.  What a fantastic site.  I have used it before to identify artists of pieces I own.  The site shows the marks the potter makes so you can be certain you have one of  their works.  It also tells you a little bit about the artists.  I found out that Helen Taylor uses simple forms such as slab platters and bold colours to paint floral themes directly on the unfired surface, which she finishes with a transparent glaze.  My two plates are very typical of her work.

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In my kitchen:

Are the last three Christmas tree spritz cookies.  I made them with my cookie press.  I love and hate the press.  When it is in the groove, you can pump out an amazing number of biscuits in a very short period of time but it is not always “in the groove” and  it can be very frustrating.  Some designs will just not come away from the barrel…  some will not stick to the baking tray… and some pop out perfectly.

These little biscuits were made to get me into the Christmas spirit.

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Maus is a funny one.  She just said to me,  “Considering all the travelling we have done, we haven’t bought much.”  Can you believe she thinks that?  Those who have been following this blog for a while will know we have a lot of stuff.  I can’t believe she even thought it, let alone uttered it.

This little plate was bought in Sri Lanka on another holiday and says it all. Merry Christmas everyone.  I wish you all a fabulous festive season celebrated with your friends and family.

Thanks for visiting and commenting.  Those visits and comments are what keeps bloggers going.

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If you would like to see what is in other bloggers’ kitchens this month, visit Celia at Fig Jam and Lime Cordial.  This is the last month Celia will be hosting In My Kitchen.  I would like to thank Celia for hosting it all this time.  The concept has been a great success.

I have contributed every month since March 2012 when I started this blog.  There is a lot of stuff in my kitchen!  I have no idea what planet Maus is on!!!

 

33 thoughts on “In My Kitchen – December 2015

  1. Can I just say you photos are always so divine! Your table cloth bought back so many memories of my nana, who made many beautiful things 🙂 oh and I try to stay away from op shops!!! LOL as I have no more room 🙂 I hope you have a wonderful Christmas with friends and family! Liz xxx

  2. I had to re-read the top part of your post twice as I truly didn’t realise the garlic and chillis were ceramic. Very well done indeed. One tomato plant… yes, yes, we’ve heard it all before Glenda. Looking forward to a tomato filled post in February. “Considering all the travelling we have done, we haven’t bought much.”…. I think Maus needs to go and lie down….

  3. Glenda… Maus needs to have a good look in your cupboards 🙂 The ceramic piece with garlic and chillies is beautifully crafted and looks very real. You might get a mouse cheeseboard this year… Maus is clearly very talented too. Bet she could make lovely boxes for your beautiful soaps. Lots of lovely treasures in your kitchen that hold lovely memories. 🙂

  4. Glenda, Maus’ comment about not having a lot of stuff has made me laugh as she sound a little like me and you a little like Mr A 🙂 And the cheese board is just too cute. Happy December x

  5. Your Maus is some wood worker, Glenda. Love the cheese board. Those two iris plates were quite a find, as was the little Sicilian bowl. I’m normally not one to buy large things when on a trip — though I do have a couple notable exceptions. I like to buy some small things along the way and place them throughout my home. No matter what room I find myself, there’s a reminder of some wonderful trip.

    • John, that is just what souvenirs should do, remind us of our travels. I can only fit little things in now but they are just as good as reminding me of times past.

  6. Glenda, you always have the most wonderful IMK instalments!
    I too love and hate my cookie press! Thought is was only me.
    My Pete is not getting around to making me a lazy susan, think I should commission your Maus. 😀 In fairness he isn’t home long enough before zooming off on his next trip.
    Have a beautiful day.
    🙂 Mandy xo

  7. You had me fooled, I thought that first photo was real not ceramic! Love the cheese board Maus made and the handcrafted cheese knife. I must agree with you, I also have a lot in my kitchen. While I love the IMK posts, it give the hubby a chance to actually see what he may have never noticed coming in my kitchen!!

  8. Op shops are so good- nearly all my books come from oppies or Savers and most of my clothes do too. But yes, they are hit and miss. Our cherry tomatoes are a bit behind yours- very disciplined of you only planting one! I am rather jealous of the avocado tree.

    • Hi Francesca, my only complaint about the avocados is, you can never predict when they are going to ripen. It is always a flurry at the last minute to incorporate one into dinner after you notice it is ready.

  9. Your cheeseboard is fantastic! I love wood and the whimsy of the mouse. I’ve never had a fresh avocado. When they arrive in our stores they’re still hard and have to “ripen,” but if we aren’t paying attention they go from solid to soft in a day.

    • Hi Robin, you have the same problem when you have a tree. They have to be picked unripe and then left. Each one takes a different number of days to ripen so you can never predict when it is going to happen.

  10. Merry Christmas Glenda. There are many things in this post that I would just love to receive at Christmas…..the cheese board, the tablecloth and the blue iris plates being my top picks!

  11. Lots… even just in this IMK… of interesting an beautiful things. Small 6.5 cm bowls are regular use in my kitchen for melting butter, cracking an egg, holding a few olives… I could go on.
    We also are fond of irises, and have a few items that depict them. Hopefully my stained glass iris doors will be installed on the verandah in the near future. The plates are lovely.
    At the words spritz, cookies and press I had to take a deep breath… it was just too fickle. I surrendered mine to the area in the basement of our apartment complex where unwanted items are swapped. I hope it has gone to a good home, and I wish its new owner the very best of luck.
    I thought the ceramic piece in the first photo was real. Last week it was fake cup cake soaps, this week it’s ceramic wreaths…there’s no end to it; my MiL has a bowl full of replica fruit!

  12. I love op shops too. Wouldn’t it be fun if we lived closer to each other… we could go op-shopping together! Love post, Glenda. I would NEVER have guessed that the top photo was of a ceramic piece!

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