Blog: In My Kitchen
So it's been a little while since I last posted a blog. I had a wee bit of a sad time as my mum passed away last month.
Losing a member of your family can sort of take the joy out of things, no matter what your relationship was with that person.
This post won't have a lot about food but it will be a lot of what my siblings and I talked about in the kitchen while we prepared our mum for her funeral.
First was the unpleasant (not sure if that's the right word) task of talking to a funeral director about what it was we had to do. We used Ninness in Porirua and I have to say I found Cheryl to be fantastic. She was sympathetic to our needs and wants, was very understanding and of course made the process as painless as she could for us given the circumstances.
Next was finding someone who would take the service for her. Mum was raised a Catholic and whilst she wasn't practising, she most definitely would not have been happy if it was someone was not Catholic. God forbid we hired a Protestant or worse 9 (in her eyes)! We found a delightful chap and he was actually once upon a time a priest. Whilst mother may well have done a bit of sniff and a "hmmpf, ex-priest eh, I wonder why he left", she would have been pleased.
I'm not very experienced with pastry making or baking in general. I am a savoury kinda gal rather than sweet so don't feel the need to bake and make sweets or pastry. Shop bought pastry is just fine by me. But, having said that I found a recipe in the book that came with Julia which looked very tasty so thought I would have a go.
Golden Onion Tart, oh I thought this is right up my alley so let's have a go. First up is making the short pastry and I thought that it was important I at least try. In went all the ingredients and thank you Julia, perfect pastry.
I followed the recipe to the letter and everything was just peachy until it was time to put it all together into the dish. This is where my trouble started.
My stupid flan pan thing wasn't leak-proof! I put the dish in the oven and the next thing, the milky eggy mixture was seeping out onto the oven floor. Oh no, panic. I grabbed it out of the oven and put it on the bench and watched in dismay as the mixture continued to run out.
Competition in the kitchen heated up as the Wellington city's mayor and parliamentary representative went head to head in a cook-off at Le Cordon Bleu, and I was lucky enough to see it.
Last weekend's competition, held at the internationall cookery school's Wellington campus, was to raise awareness of Fair Trade products and to let people know that the city is the first Fair Trade Capital City in the Southern Hemisphere.
Le Cordon Bleu's Wellington campus is new and very modern. Cath Hopkin, director of LBC and a member of the Fair Trade City Trust, told me she is delighted with how things were progressing at the school and that she was very pleased to host the event.
The competitors were split divided into two teams - Steve Logan from Logan Brown Restaurant and Mayor Celia Wade-Brown against TV Presenter Sarah Bradley and Deputy Labour leader and Wellington Central MP Grant Robertson.
AND INTRODUCING A MASTERCHEF'S BOOK
My blog is called In My Kitchen because it's about all food related things, not just recipe-sharing. It's the same as when you sit around your kitchen table at home and talk about all sorts of things.
The kitchen really is the heart of the house. It hasn't mattered where I have lived or how tiny the kitchen, people have always squeezed in and sat about chatting and eating, quite possibly a wee bit of drinking too and not always coffee or tea!
This week I want to talk about cook books. I love them, and for all sorts of reasons - it's not just about the recipes.
I love the look and shape of them and I am a very tactile person so the feel of them is important. I love the latest one of Al Brown's; it has a textured cover and it's so nice to run my fingers over it (try doing that on a Kindle)!
It's been one year since I started my blog, and we are still going strong.
Can you believe it? It's been one year since starting my blog. When I started the blog, I didn't want it to be just about sharing recipes. There are millions, literally, of sites if you just want recipes. I was keen to talk about all manner of things food-related, stuff that you would talk about around your kitchen table.
One of the most my interesting posts was about Porirua City Mayor, Nick Leggett. Nick is the youngest Mayor in New Zealand, but has been worried about his longevity (and not just in local politics) because of an over-eating problem. He also knew he was eating the wrong type of food.
Young and overweight, he decided to take matters into his own hands (and pocket) and had a gastric band fitted. He has never regretted it. It helped him lose weight so he could exercise and monitor his diet and he is now one very healthy looking specimen, let me tell you. He still has treats, but has learned how to control his eating, eats the right type of food and exercises regularly. He truly is a great role model.
Marmageddon was big when I first started. The factory had to close because of damage it sustained during the devastating and fatal earthquakes in Christchurch. This meant for some time to come, there would be no Marmite.
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