In My Kitchen – December 2015

Another month flies by and it’s time for an In My Kitchen installment.  Thanks again to the lovely Celia over at Fig Jam and Lime Cordial for hosting this wonderful monthly event.

I suppose I’ll begin with food and beverage items in my kitchen.  First off is this pearl sugar.  I looked around town and couldn’t find any so finally decided to order some.  I got two packages, after all when ordering why not stock up?!  I’ve used it already and you’ll be seeing it  in use here on the blog in a couple days if all goes well.

Pearl Sugar

On a recent liquor store run I found this Espresso Bailey’s. It was right by the door and asking to go home with me, product placement success! It tastes excellent, especially in some hot cocoa this time of year.

Bailey's

Here is a shot of Ewan’s birthday cake. I barely got a phone shot before we packed it up to take to the mountains for his family birthday dinner the day before Thanksgiving. It was a Black Forest cherry cake and extremely delicious.

Black Forest Cherry Cake

Speaking of Ewan’s cake and Jack’s Oreo Torte last month this is the cookbook I used. I love both recipes. Not only did they taste delicious, but the six inch size was great. I got this cookbook a while ago after seeing it on another blog, can’t remember which one anymore. I ordered it right away, couldn’t wait until it came out in English!  It is now available in English under the title Lomelino’s Cakes.

Lomelino's Cakes

This is my “buy” of the month. I ordered a set of three bee jelly jars from Zulily and when they arrived one was broken. They refunded me the cost and gave me $10 in store credit. Basically, they paid me $10 for two perfectly fine jars! One is in the fridge filled with maple cinnamon vanilla cream cheese.

Jelly Jar

I got these cute bottles on clearance at Target earlier in the month. You know, to pack cocktails in emergency situations!

Bottles

Over Thanksgiving weekend we went to Mud Dabbers.  It’s an amazing pottery store near my parent’s house. We got this great platter there. I envision a mound of polenta covered in beef and vegetables or maybe shrimp and grits served on it.

Panthertown Pottery

These beautiful cutting boards arrived this morning while I was at the gym.  They are made by Michael of Michael’s Woodcraft .  These shots don’t do them justice, but given the time crunch I couldn’t find anything to put on them.  I have plans for one of them in the next couple days though.

 

In my garden the broccoli is finally starting to grow. Hopefully it will get a bit bigger soon as the nights will be cooling even more.

Broccoli

And then we have my pantry in progress. The lighting in Josh’s workshop isn’t the best so work with me on these photos. The blue pieces laying on the floor are the backboards. When you open the pantry doors the back will be blue. The other shots have the actual pantry, glued up and sitting on its side. Josh says it should be in the kitchen by Christmas, just without the doors done. I’m very excited!

image

That about sums up the action in my kitchen this month. We had Thanksgiving out of town but will have Christmas at home so there should be plenty of food pictures next month. Head on over to Celia’s blog Fig Jam and Lime Cordial to see what is happening in kitchens across the globe.

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42 thoughts on “In My Kitchen – December 2015

  1. ladyredspecs

    Nice to see how the pantry is progressing Gretchen. Well done with the honey bee jars too, it’s good to know that there are retailers who value their customers. Looove the pottery platter, definitely see polenta and ragu

    Reply
  2. ChgoJohn

    Great look behind the curtain. I cannot get over just how different our climates are. You’ve got broccoli growing? I’m proud of the 5 green tomatoes that are ever-so-slowly ripening on my counter. The rest of my garden is long gone. I saw those boards at Michael’s, His work is really beautiful. If I ever get my kitchen reorganized, I’d love to purchase a piece. Until the, though, nothing new comes into my kitchen unless something of equal size or larger goes out. 🙂

    Reply
    1. Gretchen Post author

      I completely understand about a full kitchen. I am counting on extra storage in the garage when josh moves more of his stuff to the other garage. Plus when the pantry comes in the kitchen and I move everything from the current “pantry” I am hoping to have a little extra room there, not sure how realistic that is though. We have already had a couple freezes but again this week for a few days it is upper 60s/low 70s for highs and nice at night due to clouds. Hoping my broccoli gets bigger. The squash all died in the freeze but rosemary and thyme grow year round usually.

      Reply
  3. Liz @ spades, spatulas, and spoons

    Wonderful things this month! I love the bee jars, platter and wooden boards. I can imagine a wonderful stew mounded over mashed potatoes or polenta, yum. And Bailey with hot chocolate or coffee, there’s a treat. I find that my kitchen “stuff” expands to fill all the available space, pantry or fridge or freezer.

    Reply
    1. Gretchen Post author

      Oh yes, stew over mashed potatoes would also be great. So many ideas, good thing the cooler weather is finally arriving here. Thanks for popping by.

      Reply
  4. My Kitchen Stories

    Well, we’ve all made it to december. You sound like you have been busy. love the boards and the great plate. it is so very hard to resist gorgeous jars oh and baileys too….!

    Reply
    1. Gretchen Post author

      Tell me about it! I just bought my second bottle. As luck would have it there was even a mail in rebate if you bought three bottles of certain liquor store and Bailey’s was one of them!

      Reply
    1. Gretchen Post author

      The espresso Bailey’s is fantastic! Seems the technology gremlins are taunting me, earlier it was a different photo missing. The cake picture is up as of now and hopefully nothing else will disappear as a result! Thanks for letting me know.

      Reply
  5. Robin Follette

    The pantry’s going to be wonderful! I love the little bee jars (how cute!), cutting boards and platter. Wooden cutting boards are my weakness and those are beautiful! I hadn’t heard of pearl sugar. I’ll be looking for it when I go into the city next week.

    Reply
    1. Gretchen Post author

      Wood cutting boards are becoming my new weakness as well. The bee jars are adorable, the boys like them too. I had to order the pearl sugar since I couldn’t find it in my small city, good luck to you. You can also add it into Liege style waffles if you make those.

      Reply
  6. Liz

    I see you’ve been on a shopping spree. Lots of good things to admire. Omg I love black forest cake. I can’t remember the last time I had a real homemade black forest cake. I wish I could grab it off the screen. I look forward to seeing the finished pantry. I bet it will really look nice.

    Reply
    1. Gretchen Post author

      I hadn’t had Black Forest cake since living in Germany ages ago. That was a delicious recipe and the perfect size! The boys loved it to, their first time for having it. Definitely some fun new things in my kitchen this month, we’ll see what Christmas brings.

      Reply
  7. thecompletebook

    So many wonderful treasures in your kitchen and how very exciting about your pantry, can’t wait to see that complete and I must be living under a rock, I have never heard of pearl sugar before.
    Have a beautiful weekend.
    🙂 Mandy xo

    Reply
    1. Gretchen Post author

      I am very excited about the pantry. Hopefully it will be in the January IMK post sitting in my actual kitchen. Perhaps without doors but at least I can begin the organization process! I first heard about pearl sugar for putting into Liege style waffles. So far I’ve just used it on top of rolls but soon I’ll play with it more.

      Reply
  8. Maggie

    Lovely to see the progression of your pantry! I bet you’ll be glad when it’s done – a lovely Christmas present! Umm, that cake looks amazing! I love a good black forest but it’s been a while since I had one. Baileys in hot chocolate or in coffee is divine! Also over ice-cream. I hope you enjoy it in many different ways. My favourite way is on the rocks.

    Reply
    1. Gretchen Post author

      I’m very excited about the pantry. I can only hope all my stuff fits! The Black Forest cake was very delicious, I hadn’t had one since living in Germany. Ewan picked it out from the cookbook and as you can imagine all the boys loved it!

      Reply
      1. Maggie

        I can imagine! It looked fantastic and it is such an amazing cake. When I was little it was one of my Dad’s favourites! Fingers crossed everything fits in!

    2. Gretchen Post author

      Oh yeah, how could I forget the Bailey’s. I enjoy it every way you mentioned! The espresso flavor is awesome in hot chocolate now but on the rocks is also great, with or without vodka.

      Reply
    1. Gretchen Post author

      The espresso Bailey’s is incredible, the perfect holiday gift. I am loving my wood boards, we used them all (I already had another one so three total) for our carpet picnic last night. I’m very excited about the pantry, hubby will be in the workshop shortly working on it. These IMK posts can be torturous, I’ve had pantry and kitchen envy when reading many posts!

      Reply
  9. emmabarrett1508

    I have just sat at the computer to start thinking about this months IMK. Pearl sugar sounds really interesting. I have never come across it before. I love the wooden chopping boards and congratulations for growing your own broccoli. I can’t wait for the spring here in the UK so I can start working on our vegetable boxes again. Your black forest cake is a real show stopper. Have a fantastic week. Emma xx

    Reply
    1. Gretchen Post author

      Thanks Emma! The pearl sugar is nice for sprinkling on so many different things. I’ll need to do more research and experiment some. I love the wood boards. I’ll check on the broccoli today, may be time to cut it. I am also looking forward to spring and getting the whole garden going again.

      Reply
  10. Ania @ Milk, Toast and Honey

    Another wonderful post Gretchen. I too have some pearl sugar in my kitchen which will be sprinkled generously over cinnamon and cardamom buns later this week. I particularly love that platter, just stunning. Have a wonderful month ahead x

    Reply
    1. Gretchen Post author

      Thank you Ania. So finally somebody else who has pearl sugar. Your comment reminded me I’ve been meaning to make cinnamon rolls with orange cardamom glaze and the pearl sugar will go with that. The platter is wonderful, I love being able to serve everything on just the one platter.

      Reply
    1. Gretchen Post author

      I love the bee jars too, and you can’t beat getting paid to have them! Definitely check out her cookbook, the two cakes I’ve made thus far are fantastic and I love the smaller size for some since we don’t always need a big cake for small gatherings.

      Reply
  11. theclevercarrot

    Hello there fellow IMK friend! How lucky to be creating a new pantry! Look forward to the big reveal. I’ve seen Michael’s boards before. Looks like great craftsmanship! p.s Your boys are adorable. What are their ages? Mine are 6 and 4 and they’re a hand full!!

    Reply
    1. Gretchen Post author

      I am very excited about the pantry! It should be in the kitchen by Christmas without the doors done yet. Then I’ll need to figure out how to organize it and keep the boys out, right now we have a lock on the hall closet door which we use as a pantry! The boys are 5, 7 and 8 years old so I know how busy you must be too. I love how interested they are in helping in the kitchen, even when it may mean more cleanup or chopping extra veggies since they munch while I prep.

      Reply
    1. Gretchen Post author

      It is coming along nicely. Unfortunately it also means I am in charge of any boy activities on the weekends so he has time to work on it! We will all be glad when it is done. I’m sure I’ll find some interesting things when I move everything into it!

      Reply

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