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In My Kitchen May 2017

I haven’t done the last couple of IMK posts, and this one is a showcase of stuff that has been in my kitchen over the past few months.

Ben & Jerry’s released new vegan flavours last year some time, and four of those flavours have made it to Australia, with a way expensive price tag to boot. I’d gone to Prahran Convenience here in Melbourne to stock up on foods for Easter and these were the only two vegan Ben & Jerry’s flavours available. I had really wanted the peanut butter! The chunky monkey flavour is banana with choc chunks and walnut pieces. It was okay but really, I can make my own that tastes similar (dare I say better) and of course a fraction of the price: frozen banana nicecream with a little almond milk, toasted walnuts and some chocolate.

When I tried the chocolate fudge brownie flavour I wasn’t that impressed. I’m not usually a fan of chocolate, unless it’s something really good like the vegan chocolate flavours at Miinot Gelato in Pascoe Vale South. So this was a regret-purchase until I had a brainwave, and mixed in some PB2 powdered peanut butter. Then it was excellent:One of my purchases for Easter lunch was this awesome lemon dill cashew cheese made by Botanical Cuisine. This is just so good, I couldn’t take it home because I knew I’d finish it in a few hours. Love it and it’s very lemony too:

My other Easter lunch contribution was this Field Roast roast, which was quite nice:

Jerry’s Burgers have often had a stall at some events I’ve been to and I have always said I’ll buy a burger the next time I see the stall. This time I picked up these frozen patties from Prahran Convenience. These were nice plain-ish lentil based patties and I liked that they weren’t heavily flavoured because I had one more Mediterranean style, and another with Japanese sauces and gomasio:I’ve never tried any Suzy Spoon’s Vegetarian Butcher products, and a visit to Sydney would definitely include some purchases!I’ve bought this Viana veggie gyros before and liked it in a wrap souvlaki/gyros style. I’m not too big on buying mock meats but as a once in a while thing, this is okay:These sage and marjoram VegiDeli sausages were just okay, I’m sure I liked them much more in the past. Still good as a sausage sizzle though!Keeping it local with Zebra Dream’s peanut butter chocolate flavour. I love Zebra Dream icecream and this was really nice:Preston market (why do markets and supermarkets insist on cucumbers in plastic wrap?!). I’ll always get the hot jam donuts from the van at Preston market (100% plant based) so I probably took this photo while waiting for donuts 🙂

In My Kitchen is a monthly blog link up that is currently being hosted by Sherry at Sherry’s Pickings. I’m submitting this blog post of mine for May 2017. While not a vegan-specific event, anyone can join in and you can also discover new blogs, recipes, products, etc!

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In My Kitchen February 2017

Not a big In My Kitchen this month. I did a big pantry cleanout and got rid of the usual suspects–goods that had a use-by date of years ago. I’m doing that thingy now where you only cook with ingredients you already have, rather than buying more stuff. Too bad the family won’t go near chickpeas, lentils and beans. I have heaps of those that need to be used up.

So the top photo up there is the smoked garlic in oil I bought from the Coburg Farmers Market. It’s really quite nice, though I keep forgetting to add it to my food.

I’m not in to buying drinks, I always carry around a water bottle and that’s enough for me but these two vegan milk drinks by Cor de Coco were reduced in the supermarket so I tried them out. They were okay enough (especially on a hot day):

I had to buy stuff from Iherb and bought these chipotle garlic onion chips by dang. They’re just too sweet and give you the stinkiest breath ever. I ended up throwing them out, but I also bought two packets by accident so I will gift the second packet.

Also part of my Iherb purchase was a packet of these Earth Balance puffs. We don’t have them in Australia and I hear people rave about them. We’re not in to buying snack kinds of foods at home, like chips/crisps or whatever but I thought eh why not. They were okay, I can say I’ve tried them now but not really keen to have them again.

Not much else happening in my kitchen, life has been extremely busy this year!

In My Kitchen is a monthly blog link up that is currently being hosted by Lizzy at Bizzy Lizzy’s Good Things Blog. I’m submitting this blog post of mine for February 2017. While not a vegan-specific event, anyone can join in and you can also discover new blogs, recipes, products, etc!

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In My Kitchen December 2016

In My Kitchen is a monthly blog link up that is currently being hosted by Lizzy at Bizzy Lizzy’s Good Things Blog. I’m submitting this blog post of mine for December 2016. While not a vegan-specific event, anyone can join in and you can also discover new blogs, recipes, products, etc!

I will apologise again in advance for not leaving comments on some blogs as for whatever bizarre reason there are some blogs through Blogspot usually that I can’t comment on. My comments don’t go through or I get “that comment could not be posted”. Some times I have to switch browsers to get comments to work, or other times I’m asked to log in to WordPress (even though I moved my WordPress blog to my self hosted domain) etc. Total pain in the bum stuff.

I wish I could have a lot of Christmassy things for In My Kitchen December, but decorations and such aren’t really a good idea because our cats demolish them in two seconds flat. The only thing we can manage is this little tree (found at the op shop for a couple of bucks) and Lego trees. But even these get knocked over and chewed on:

fishlesstunaetc

So In My Kitchen we have the little can of fishless tuna, which I received in a vegan box swap. I never liked tuna or fish so vegan fishy foods don’t appeal to me at all so I will give this away. The white balsamic was one of those purchases where I absolutely had to have for one recipe (which I promptly misplaced). I was really pleased to find white balsamic as I have never seen it in the supermarkets or stores I shopped at. When I came home and put it away, I found another bottle I clearly desperately needed some time in the past.

I have these two blocks of mint crisp Cocolo, my favourite vegan option for a mint chocolate. Unfortunately Cocolo are shutting up shop so I’ll enjoy these while I can:

cocolomint

In My Kitchen is a Lucky Iron Fish! When I first heard people recommending a ‘lucky iron fish’ for iron related issues in the diet, I admit I thought it sounded like something scammy. I have had iron related issues for a quite a long time now, despite monitoring what I eat, so when I finally looked up the Lucky Iron Fish website and saw that it was not only legit but also a wonderful initiative, I purchased one right away. Please have a read of the Lucky Iron Fish website to see what it’s all about. You can also buy an iron fish and have one donated too. Fishykins here is easy to use. You just pop it in some boiling water with citrus for about ten minutes, take fishy out then use the water to cook your food. I made pasta like this and could detect a metallic kind of taste but when I mixed it all with pasta sauce you couldn’t tell. The veggies don’t taste iron-fishy either.

luckyironfish

I have some new cookbooks! As if I don’t have enough already. I’ve made the decision to part with the cookbooks I rarely look at. They take up too much space and I never use them. I’m really loving But My Family Would Never Eat Vegan! by Kristy Turner, author of the Keepin’ It Kind blog and the But I Could Never Go Vegan! cookbook (another cookbook I really enjoy leafing through). I’ve made a few recipes and I’ll put them up on the blog soon.

newvegancookbook

I also have Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s latest book The Superfun Times Vegan Holiday Book. Not shown is the new Smith & Daughters cookbook:

superfunisa

I recently went to lunch at Juanita’s Kitchen here in Melbourne and Juanita gave us some packets of tea and chai. I chose these two varieties and have been enjoying them, especially the chilli chai while I’ve been a bit sick with a cold:juanitaskitchen

And not In My Kitchen but in my back yard, as I like to call it, some Melbourne scenes.old melbourne trammelb1melb2

I hope you all have a fantastic holiday period full of good food and good times!

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In My Kitchen November 2016

I sort of forgot to do last month’s In My Kitchen and by the time I remembered it was a bit too late, so I’m super early for this month!

In My Kitchen is a monthly blog link up that is currently being hosted by Lizzy at Bizzy Lizzy’s Good Things Blog. I’m submitting this blog post of mine for November 2016. While not a vegan-specific event, anyone can join in and you can also discover new blogs, recipes, products, etc!

For a long while now I’ve had trouble leaving comments on some blogs so I do apologise for not returning comments. I’ve tried to leave comments over at the blogs of people who have left comments here, but some don’t go through 🙁

In My Kitchen are some new spices and stuff. I’m cringing at the plastic packaging but I can’t find stuff like this in any other kind of packaging than plastic. I’m not sure what I’m going to do with them all just yet but the ‘Zalt It’s Not Salt’ salt alternative has a nice list of ingredients: paprika, amchur (mango), onion, black lime powder, bay leaves, ginger. I’m looking forward to using the Indian bay leaves and as for the black salt, I misplaced my other packet which has proved a great source of frustration because it can only be in my kitchen but I still can’t find it. I have been thinking a lot about French food lately, hence the Herbes de Provence purchase. Speaking of French things, there’s the Paris to Provence festival on in Melbourne (at Como House & Garden) from Nov 18 to 20 (not a free event though purchasing tickets online allows you to enter a draw for a trip to France).

herbies spices

I asked my husband to buy cherry tomatoes when he went out grocery shopping and he came home with these cute little truss tomatoes which were quite nice, though not as sweet as I was hoping:trusstomatoes

In My Kitchen is a source of great excitement in the form of the brand new Smith & Daughters cookbook. I bought it today and read through it on the tram ride home and I love that they have included some of the dishes from the restaurant I love, like the kale leek bake:smith daughters cookbook

My son and I made some bread using the recipe on the box of bread flour. I misread the instructions and stared baking it after one rise instead of leaving it to rise a second time. It still tasted good enough and worked well as toast. I love baking bread but it disappears because I have no control over eating it and instead of eating a nice healthy wholefoods meals with my protein carbs and veg, I end up having more bread if I’m feeling too lazy to put a meal together for myself:cat smelling bread

In My Kitchen are these two coconut bowls, purchased from World Vegan Day Melbourne on Oct. 23rd:coconut bowls

When I was waiting in the queue at Smith & Deli I picked up this porcini powder. It’s sitting on top of my favourite coaster made by MAD Products:porcinipowder

And of course my kitchen wouldn’t be complete without one big fluffball hanging around. Here’s Malty not quite fitting in to this tub (his bum hangs out) but that doesn’t stop him from taking a nap. Actually this is a bit of a cheat as this photo isn’t in our kitchen, but in the room where the kids do their school work. Whenever the kids try to do work at the desk Malty here jumps up all over their books and headbutts their hands and tries to chew on the pencils. You can’t feel annoyed though when his purr is like a lawn mower:

cat in small tub

… and now I have to clean that kitchen though I might procrastinate a bit and read through the Smith & Daughters cookbook a second time 😉

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In My Kitchen September 2016

In My Kitchen is a monthly blog link up hosted by Maureen at The Orgasmic Chef. Maureen is taking a break for a bit and the official In My Kitchen linkup will be back soon, though a bunch of bloggers are still doing their monthly writeups (because this is a fun linkup!)

First a little news announcement: Vegan Mofo (Month of Food) will be running in November! It’s a FANTASTIC event where bloggers/social media users publish content about, well, vegan food basically. You don’t have to be vegan but whatever you include for Vegan Mofo must be vegan/plant based only. It can be new recipes, foods you ate, following the supplied prompts or choosing your own theme… it’s really a lot of fun and some of the stuff people have made in the past has been superb and also downright ridiculously heroic. Check out the official Vegan Mofo 2016 page for more info. One of my favourites will always be Hasta La Vegan’s 2014 theme of Bizarre and Outdated Cookbooks. Check this one out! Or Prune Gnocchi.

Even if you don’t participate you can still follow along as there will be (I assume) an official participant’s list put up before Vegan Mofo begins so you can add blogs to your feed and such. I’m not sure if I will join in this year for every day and the theme I had decided on last year seems kinda mehhh to me now. We’ll see. My theme for 2014 was Will My Kids Eat It? which surprised me in that more people were following along than I had anticipated. I had sanitised my kids’ opinions a little. Oh wow, I just read all my 2014 Mofo posts (complete with flash photos of food) and I said “I’m still on that mission to get Arthur and DeeW eating mashed potatoes”. That was on September 20th 2014 and they’re still not eating mashed potatoes. Hmmm… now I’m wondering if I should do Will My Kids Eat It? Round 2: Unedited. DO IT DO IT. I might try and distract them with the Fancy Dish technique again.

So, I have a bit of a cheat IMK this month because there’s a bit of In My Mum’s Kitchen. So, in my mum’s kitchen she has this homemade eggplant sortof-pickle. I guess its technically a pickle as it involves vinegar? But it doesn’t taste vinegary at all. It’s great to spoon some of this on to pasta or in a sandwich:

mumseggplantpickle

Also In My Mum’s Kitchen is this quince sweet she made. In Greek it’s called “gliko”. Gliko can be made with other fruits like unripe figs and orange peel. Lots of sugary syrup so I can only have a teeny piece or two and I’m done:

quinceyliko

In My Kitchen and my Mum’s Kitchen was the last of the Simple Vegan Tzatziki I made. Mum gave it the thumbs up though said she would have added a bit more lemon. I was really pleased when she said she couldn’t detect any tofu taste (I used a silken tofu base). I’m cheating here and using a photo from the recipe I put up a couple of days ago:

Simple Vegan Tzatziki by Veganopoulous

So I was visiting my mum one day and she said “did you hear that that KA Pies place won the national pie competition and beat over 1700 other entrants?” and I replied pffffft as IF they’ll have anything vegan. We actually drove past and I didn’t bother going in. Well it was humble Thai red curry pie for me because the winning pie was in fact vegan. Some people apparently kicked up a stink that the winning pie wasn’t meat. KA Pies are now planning more vegan pies as this one has been a roaring success. In fact, the first few times I went to buy one from the bakery outlet in Sunshine, they were sold out within half an hour. The first pie I had tasted great but I was surprised at the sort of mooshy filling. I had expected more bite from veggies so I was a bit disappointed. Strangely, the second time I had this pie there were more chunky veggies so I much preferred that second pie:

kathaicurrypie

Healthier stuff! I had a load of pulp  left over from juicing carrots, beetroot and greens so I put them in rice paper rolls with some tofu I had marinated in orange and sesame dressing:

juicepulprolls

We went to the Coburg Farmers’ Market yesterday and got 2kg of pink lady apples plus this 100% apple juice which is really nice. I also bought this packet of vegan jerky from Glencoe Farms. It has a nice sweet sundried tomato taste. I really like the Glencoe Farms pasta sauces, which I blogged about in my last IMK. My daughter chose this blueberry jam as our jam supplies were low:coburgmarkethaul

In My Kitchen are the remains of the wholemeal sourdough loaf on the bottom right, purchased from the Sourdough Kitchen stall at the market:sourdoughkitchenloaves

For a while now I’ve wanted to try this Irene’s ‘nistisimi’ pita. When you see the word ‘nistisimi’ it refers to the religious fasting period in the Greek Orthodox faith. However it doesn’t mean vegan (some products contain honey or casein but are deemed suitable for fasting). So if you are vegan and only wanting vegan foods, don’t assume a ‘nistisimo’ product means vegan! Greek fasting cheeses and your casein, I’m looking at you. Aaaanyway, the pita was okay though mum and I agreed it could have done with a wee bit more flavour but I’d still happily serve it up. This is the packet, I got mine from Supa IGA on Sydney Road in Brunswick:irenesnistisimopita2

And this is what it looks like baked:irenesnistisimopita

Finally, In My Kitchen was this Vego vegan milk chocolate style bar. Now, I heard loads of people saying this is the most milk chocolate-like vegan chocolate evahhh and so I was like okay yeah we’ll see. Big skeptic. Seriously though folks, this is indeed the most milk chocolate like vegan chocolate I’ve ever tasted. The texture is lovely and I’m a big fan of hazelnut chocolate so it helps. I would love to see this in a plain variety though. It cost heaps though it’s a biggish size. I’m not really in to chocolate but oooh this was good:

vegoveganchocolate

Here are some of the lovely flowers at Coburg Farmers’ Market yesterday, unfortunately not In My Kitchen!

coburgmarketflowers1 coburgmarketflowers2