Friday, 4 July 2014

In My Kitchen - July 2014

Here's what's happening in my kitchen at the moment...






Chai Latte:

My kitchen has been like an Indian spice parlour lately. Something about the cold weather makes me want to curl up with a Chai Latte and watch episode after episode of House of Cards. Actually, I want to do that in any weather.

MY CHAI TEA BLEND:
2 sticks cinnamon
12 green cardamon pods
2 teaspoons fennel seeds
1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon whole cloves
6 star anise
4 shards of dried ginger
1/2 teaspoon black peppercorns
1/2 cup loose black tea (I use Darjeeling)

Preheat the oven to 180C. Gently crush the spices in a mortar and pestle to break them up just a little. Sprinkle them on a baking tray and lightly toast in the oven for about 5 minutes. When cool, add the loose tea and mix. Store in an airtight jar.



Cuttlefish Ink:

We ate lunch at Rosetta recently and my 13 year old son tried the Tagliarini Neri - long thin squid ink pasta. He swooned when he ate it and made me promise to make it for him if I ever got my hands on some squid ink. I didn't actually think I'd find any, but to my surprise I found some cuttlefish ink at ALDI. I guess I have a date with my pasta machine in the not too distant future. 

UPDATE: I made Tagliarini Neri with Garlic Chilli and Crab. Check out the recipe here



Crawfish, Shrimp & Crab Boil:

I'm a glutton for punishment, or just a glutton (both, I suspect). I ordered this Crawfish, Shrimp & Crab Boil on line thinking it would be fun to have a crab boil just like we had at a restaurant in the States when we visited while ago. Little did I know that the instructions would inform me that  "One bag of crab boil is sufficient for 4 pounds of shrimp, 4 pounds of crawfish or 1 dozen crabs." A huge amount of food in anyones language. Anybody want to come over to my kitchen for a crab boil?



Ottolenghi The Cookbook:

I have all of Ottolenghis cookbooks except this one... until now. I finally got around to getting the final piece of my Ottolenghi puzzle... completing the final leg of my Ottolenghi odyssey... one more last hurrah for my Ottolenghi obsession. Until he writes another cookbook that is.


Anyway, that's my kitchen for now.

Pop on over and check out the links to bloggers’ kitchens around the world at In My Kitchen on
Fig Jam and Lime Cordial









40 comments:

  1. wow, some amazing things going on in your kitchen! i can smell the chai latte from here.

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    1. Thanks Janelle.There's always something going on in my kitchen.

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  2. Lots of deliciousness going on there Jennifer! Happy cooking.

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    1. Thanks Liz. Can't wait to use the Ottolenghi cookbook. (I know you're a fellow enthusiast.)

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  3. Some very new to me ingredients, your family is very lucky!

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    1. Thanks Danielle. They are the happy recipients of my finds and creations.

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  4. Squid ink in aldi? I hope my Aldi has that too. Lovely kitchen goodies.

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    1. Thanks for your comment Francesca. Yes, ALDI, can you believe it?

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  5. you're kidding? squid ink at Aldi? wow.:) i keep hearing great things about Ottolenghi's books? are they that good?
    cheers
    sherry

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    1. I know!! ALDI is like an Aladdins Cave, seriously. Ottolenghis books are great. He is the master of vegetables. This particular book has some great cakes and pastries.

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    2. i must check out his books soon. maybe we just have an awful aldi near us. i have been in a couple of times but it seems to have dreadful stuff. i am always confused when people say what fab stuff they have there...:(

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    3. That's weird. May be ALDI select produce according to the demographic of the area they are in. Most of the stuff is pretty run-of-the-mill, but every now and then I get a treasure or something I just can't get any where else at my local ALDI. Hence, I make a trip every week just in case I get lucky. :)

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  6. I love the sound of your Chai tea blend.
    Have a lovely Friday.
    :-) Mandy xo

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    1. Thank you. Chai tea on a cold day is heaven.

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  7. Jennifer, your chai tea sounds lovely in any season -- thanks for the recipe! Had to smile about the Zatarain's -- if you want to make a smaller batch, just open the seasoning bag into a bowl and measure out your desired quantity. Tie it in cheesecloth (several layers) or put it in a tea infuser ball (depending on how large the holes are and how small the spices are), then proceed as directed. Or invite friends, like you did! :)

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    1. Thank you so much for the crab boil tip Kim. Seriously, a dozen crabs is even too much for a glutton like me :)

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  8. Jennifer, isn't Aldi just the best? It's hard to believe they'd have squid ink on sale there, isn't it! Love the teapot, and your chai mix sounds divine! That Ottolenghi book is an absolute treat, hope you love it as much as I have!

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    1. Thanks so much Celia. I love ALDI because I never know what I'm going to find, unlike the predictable and boring major supermarkets. I'm already loving Ottolenghis book. I have some things that I have made from it coming up on the blog soon.

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  9. Jennifer, isn't Aldi great? Hard to believe they'd have squid ink for sale there, but they always have the most unusual things! Love the tea pot and your chai mix sounds divine. Enjoy the Ottolenghi cookbook - I think it's fabulous! x

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  10. I love tea, but for some reason I'm not a fan of Chai, but yours looks wonderful! Oh and count me in for the crab boil! Thanks for sharing! Liz x

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    1. I hope you can make it to my crab boil. I don't think I can eat 1 dozen crabs all by myself. :)

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  11. So many interesting things in your kitchen! Love that little teapot, I can almost smell the delicious Chai tea from here. Homemade cuttlefish ink pasta will be something special I am sure. I hope you share it here!

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    1. Thanks so much Jane. I will definitely post the cuttlefish ink pasta here.

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  12. Lovely tour Jennifer. I tried a Louisiana shrimp boil only the other day - so much food! As to your Ottolenghi obsession. Hear, hear I say. You must beside yourself that he has a new show on SBS soon. Cheers

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    1. Oh I'm so excited about the new Ottolenghi show. Can't wait. I think I'm going to take Kim's advice and use just enough crab boil to cook a respectable amount of food (rather than the indecent amount stated on the pack). I can't wait to try it.

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  13. Ahh, chai latte. Yours looks like the authentic kind I love best, and thanks for sharing your recipe so I can give it a go myself :)

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    1. Thanks Kari and you're welcome. I hope you like it.

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  14. Oh what pretty tea - I do love loose leaf tea with some colour and texture (no doubt because I only drink herbal). The cuttlefish ink looks so dark and yet I remember having cuttlefish for our budgies as a kid and it was so white. And your ottolenghi collection sounds great - I only have one of his books and don't use it enough but it is gorgeous to look at

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    1. The cuttlefish you gave your budgies was the dried cartilage out of cavity of the fish (the backbone if you will). The ink comes from a sack inside the fish. It is used as a defense mechanism. If the fish feels threatened, it squirts its ink to create a cloud so that it can get away from its predators. The ink has a deep, savoury "taste-of-the-sea" flavour and is delicious in pasta and risotto.

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  15. I love the Ottolenghi cookbooks too! I don't have all of them (yet).

    The chai latte looks fabulous. What I love about winter is drinking lots of hot sweet tea.

    (Blogspot and Wordpress don't like each other do they?)

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  16. I made a chai spiced cake the other day (on the blog soon) and the smell of the house made me want to swoon too.
    I must explore Aldi more closely to see what treasures can be unearthed. Also, I found out the other day that Ottolenghi is writing another book....out later this year....just sayin'.....

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  17. Love this compilation of lovely things! I have never, never seen squid ink for sale in the states.. so awesome..

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    1. Thanks Maria. We usually get squid ink at the fish mongers. I hope you are able to get your hands on some. I've actually "harvested" it myself when I've bough whole squid. It's not hard. Just reach inside the head of the squid, pull the innards out and you will see a silver sack. Gently remove the sack, hold it over a bowl, pierce it with a skewer and squeeze the ink out. Easy!

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  18. G'day! Miss Shrimp boils, true and will be curious how that comes out and your squid ink intrigues me!
    Thanks for this month's kitchen view too!
    Cheers! Joanne

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    1. Thanks. I can't wait to use the crab boil and the ink. I believe there'll be some seriously good eats to be had when I do.

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  19. Jennifer, I be in on that crab boil!! I only just found out what they were (I had to ask a blogger from the States) and they sound like fun.

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    1. Thank you. I think a crab boil is the most crowd-pleasing, convivial meal. I can't wait to have my entire family (I have a big one) and ALL of my friends over to help me eat it.

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  20. Jennifer, I be in on that crab boil!! I only just found out what they were (I had to ask a blogger from the States) and they sound like fun. Glenda

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  21. Hi Jennifer! There's something so comforting about Chai on a cool day! Thanks for sharing! )

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    1. So true Emily. Thanks for stopping by.

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