In My Kitchen-April

As the seasons change so does what goes on in my kitchen. We have had a couple of days cool enough to run the heating and we’ve had a couple of days hot enough to sit outside under the trees for their cooling relief. Alas, I do think the warmer days are over, snow today on Mt Baw Baw.

In my Kitchen this month is my entire onion harvest for the season, save the drum roll, no need whatsoever. Also in my kitchen is something quite dear to me. About 23 years ago we were meant to go camping, but all three kids had the chicken pox and that was too testing even for me to endure in a tent. I managed to find a farmer who had an old farmhouse that he let people stay in (usually backpackers) and he said it was available. It was a wonderful old house on a beautiful farm in Leongatha and it had a wood fired stove, fireplaces in the main bedroom and lounge, a fig tree out the back and lots of chooks. He was thrilled that he had someone stay who actually knew how to use the stove and the next day he turned up saying his mum used to bake bread with yeast she had made herself so he had taken the time to dig out the recipe for the yeast or as we would now call it ‘starter’. It looks like it came from an old PWMU cook book but I’m not sure. I’m really pleased I still have this and I may even attempt to make the yeast from hops one day. I picked most of the fruit from the rocoto chilli bush and decided to see how it goes freezing it. I have read this works well, we will find out. I have put small quantities into ice block trays and frozen them then put into a container for easy access. A bit left of field with this one. I found this fur jacket at the op-shop in Warragul and just had to bring it home. It is like brand new, has no smell and has the most beautifully detailed buttons. It came from the Myer emporium furriers and it has made me question the whole concept of why shouldn’t we use fur. I’m not sure what is worse, polluting us and the environment with all the synthetics or if done in a responsible and humane way using animals. Whole big can of worms in that question, one I’m not ready to ponder too deeply on yet. Not sure how, but this is the last pickled onion in my kitchen. I usually make sure I have a good supply on hand but somehow I slipped up. Better make sure I do a batch next week! This is a sandwich of my freshly milled barley and whole wheat bread with ham, pickled onions and cheese. Haven’t indulged myself in something like that for a long time. We are  very excited that it is now cool enough to have fired up this little Nectre bakers oven/wood fire. This replaces the wood fired stove that was in the chimney, it was very inefficient, offered no ambience and took about 4 hours to preheat. I am thrilled with this unit, just right for sitting in front of on a miserable day while at the same time you can use the heat to cook. Tonight we are having Moroccan style meatballs with roast veggies. I put some eggplant and a head of garlic in to roast earlier which I will make a little side dish with. I see lots of enjoyment coming from this little fire.  And finally in my kitchen this month is this little cutie who has decided he LOVES grapes. I picked a bunch from the berry house and we sat on the back lawn doing the suck, spit swallow which he worked out very quickly. These are the grapes that taste like passionfruit and even though they have fairly thick skin and large pips it didn’t stop him working his way through almost an entire bunch. Got quite a good rhythm going after the first couple!Thanks to Liz over at BizzyLizzysGoodThings for being the conduit for linking those who share a peek into their kitchens each month.

23 Replies to “In My Kitchen-April”

  1. Love the little Nectar. we have a large one in the lounge and am about to buy this smaller model for the kitchen/dining area. Nectar wood heaters have a great reputation. Keen to hear how the eggplant went.


    1. I waited 3 years to find one secondhand as they are so pricey new. Pleased I hung out, it is wonderful. Eggplant great! Just roasted with garlic, mixed with s&p, lemonade a touch of chilli and it is yummy!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Yes, I was very lucky and got this for $1200.00, cost about $800.00 to install cause needed extra flu kit. If I had to do again now I know how good it is, I would lash out.


  2. Hi Maree, happy April to you and thanks for the very kind shout out. It’s chilly enough here in Canberra tonight to pop the heating on, but I’ve put on my slippers and gathered a blanket over us as we watch TV. Congratulations on the onion harvest. Two is better than nothing.


  3. Hi Maree, please make some bread using the recipe. The CW Cookbook has recipes like that in and I would love to try one. But it would be better after I have seen how yours went.


    1. Tis very cosy Josephine! Can’t wait till some soups are simmering away on a cold wet afternoon. I foresee that fur will make a comeback! That is my prediction for the not too distant future. I was amazed to see how big the fur industry still is in Greece, I thought it had ceased everywhere.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Imagine making your own yeast that is real dedication I freeze whole chillies both birds eye and jalapeños and they are fine. I just chuck them into plastic bags as is. They last forever:). That fur jacket is stunning isn’t it? Must’ve been worth a fortune back in the day Love your heater and the Bub!


    1. Hi Sherry, I’ve done that with corn too and surprisingly that worked really well. Good to hear your taking over the reins, would hate to see IMK disappear. Cheers!


  5. Your stove really has a nice homey look. The insurance regulations here make it almost impossible to use them. There has to be fireproofing on all the walls nearby and other restrictions too.

    Your thoughts on wearing fur are very interesting. So many ideas need to be reconsidered from time to time.

    best… mae at


  6. Pickled onions…good point. There’s none in the fridge and I’m baking a ham for Easter later this week. Also none in the garden. I put in seeds, and nada. So no I’m starting seedlings in trays… we’ll see how that goes.
    Your coat is beautiful. In the good op shops I run my hands over them, the tactile memory somehow takes me back to my childhood. But even if I were inclined it’s not cold enough here for a fur.
    Your wood fire-oven… I covet one for my kitchen. I also know where its old original woodstove is. Maybe one day.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Your kitchen looks super cosy Maree. Finally it’s begun to cool down in Brissy. I’ll be interested to see your bread experiments. I made my very first sourdough starter with potato, 30 yrs ago. It was never as successful as Celia’s offspring tho.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Maree, forgive me for not responding to your posts lately… it’s been another challenging month. I enjoyed your IMK update thoroughly and have thought of you SO often in between (like every time I walk into our guest room and see the lovely linens you shared with me, xo. 🙂 LOVE your fur coat! I’ve seen similar finds at thrift shops, the church store, etc., only to be dissuaded by “the smell.” (I hear ya!) Glad you found a lil’ bit of Hollywood glamour and hope you wear it OFTEN. Take care, xo.


    1. That’s lovely Kim, glad you get a little pleasure from them. I too have been a bit ‘slow’ with posts and find I ned some motivating. I was so excited when I ‘sniffed’ the fur and it was just like new. Nothing worse than that old stored in a cupboard for way too long smell! XX


  9. Very cute onions Maree, my entire garlic harvest was 4 tiny heads, but I suppose we have to start somewhere 🙂 I’m fascinated by the old starter recipe, I wonder what the hops add? I also love your stove, I don’t have one here as I really couldn’t bring myself to pay for wood, but they do give the most lovely atmosphere…


    1. Wood stoves are lovely but yes, wood purchasing is a problem. We have so much timber from things we have ripped or replaced that I think it should last us for quite a few winters!

      Liked by 1 person

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