Thursday, 3 March 2016

In My Kitchen in March 2016 and travel plans

In my kitchen lately we have had upheaval and busy times.  Fortunately we have also enjoyed generosity and good food.  The next month will be even more crazy. 

You see, my father in law died in Scotland recently.  It was very sudden and I am so sad that it has been some years since we have seen him.  He was a dear gentle generous man with a great sense of humour and will be missed by many.  E has gone over to be with family and Sylvia and I will head over next week for a month with a little time in Paris as well.  And in the midst of this upheaval is Sylvia's birthday and we have had a handyman getting a few things sorted around the house.  I imagine that blogging will slow down but I hope to write about some of the places we visit. 

Any recommendations for places to eat good vegetarian good in Edinburgh and Paris would be much appreciated.

And now on with my monthly kitchen update.  Starting with these gorgeous roses from our garden.  Thanks to my mum's help they have flourished and are a joy to behold.  I have even learnt a bit about pruning from her and now and helping with keeping them healthy.

It has been the month of tomatoes.  We have been buying lots from the shops and roasted some cherry tomatoes for a salad that tasted good but looked such a mess.  The ones in the top right hand corner are grown by my brother in law and were great in a simple tomato sauce to serve with dinner.  We have also had some from our cherry tomato plants in our front garden but Sylvia eats them too quickly for me to photograph.

We have had a few generous parcels from overseas lately.  These baking goodies are from Scotland (thanks Anne) and I am looking forward to using them when life settles down a little.

I had great plans for making some different sorts of dumplings and then I decided I really liked Nicki's vegetarian dumplings that I have made before.  They were lovely fried both sides but I still can't get the hang of frying one side and then steaming.  (When I tried frying and steaming the fried sides were too dark.)  However since then I have seen Nupur's dumpling recipe and want to try it.

I made bunting out of some craft papers.  I bought a hot glue gun to help but I am not sure if it was any better than other glue I have.  I was pleased with my bunting though.

I made these burgers from Vegetarian Burgers Every Which Way.  I think they might have been the quinoa, red bean and walnut burger.  I really enjoyed them.  They were similar to the Vegemite Burgers I made recently.

We made vegan banana french toast a few weeks back.  One thing I had about French toast is the wasted dipping mixture if we don't use it all.  So I tried frying it like a pancake. It was a bit 'eggy' for my liking and a mess when I flipped it.  (Yep I know it doesn't have egg in it but I don't know how else to describe the texture.)  Maybe if I added a bit of flour it might work for me.

After making these aquafaba crepes I had heaps of chickpeas leftover.  Note to self to remember to make lots of mock tuna salad with surplus chickpeas.  I love this salad so much.  It makes a satisfying dinner or an easy lunch. 

While making notes to self, must remember next time I buy smoked paprika in a plastic tub, I should put it into a proper jar before storing it above the stove.  Not only did a clumsy moment mess up my stove in a big way but it also reminded me how much colour residue is left by smoked paprika.

Finally I can't finish this post without a Minion moment.  Sylvia is totally obsessed by this cute little yellow fellas lately.  These biscuits were pretty ordinary and just a marketing gimmick but she loved them.  I can promise that there will be more Minions on the blog.

I am sending this post to Maureen of The Orgasmic Chef for In My Kitchen.  It is an event where bloggers around the world share what is happening in their kitchens.  Please head over to Maureen's blog and visit some other bloggers or even join in (by 10th of each month).


  1. I'm so sorry to hear about your Father-in-law ((hugs))

  2. I am so sorry to hear about your father in law.Hugs

    In Edinburgh I have heard great things about Union of Genius while not totally vegetarian they always have a vegetarian soup option

  3. Johanna,
    I am so sorry to read about your father in law and his passing. Our whole world changes when loved ones leave us. x
    Your roses are such a marvellous colour, I admired them from a previous post. Yes, indeed paprika does stain :)

  4. How sad about your father-in-law. I'm glad you're going to be with your husband and family during this time. Grief is something I'm learning to live with but it's not easy and my heart goes out to you. I love your bunting and I did laugh about the paprika. I think we've all been there.

    Have a safe journey.

  5. Deepest condolences on the passing of your father-in-law....
    The colors of your roses, tomatoes certainly evoke Life and joie de vivre..Wishing you all the best on your travels..P.s. My husband and I enjoyed Chinese restaurants in Edinburgh =)

  6. Sorry about your father-in-law. I am glad you get to go and be with family at this time. Safe travels to you!

    The paprika- oy. Only thing worse would have been turmeric which stains everything a deep yellow!

  7. My condolences again about your father in law - lots of luck with organising the travel. You are leaving some lovely things in your kitchen including beautiful looking tomatoes - but I am sorry about the paprika mess! The last time I did that sort of thing was with cocoa and I still seem to find bits of it in the toaster :P

  8. Hi Johanna,
    I'm so sorry to hear about your Father-in-Law...I'm glad to hear you are going to be able to join your husband and the rest of his family...

    I have really been enjoying this In My Kitchen Event on so many blog. Perhaps one day I too will share in the fun:)

    It seems to have a plate full the next couple of weeks but at least you had time to pick some gorgeous roses and harvest some vine ripe tomatoes. I'm with Sylvia, they are the very best garden fruit in my book!!!

    UG, that paprika mess must have been quite difficult to clean up. I bet you will never look at paprika the same, lol...

    Thank you so much for sharing, safe on your journey...

  9. Sorry to hear about the passing of your father in law. I hope your travels to Europe go well. I am in love with the beautiful roses and tomatoes in your kitchen.

  10. I adore your roses! I have a similar dusky pink rose in my garden called Julia's Rose - is that the name of yours?

  11. Condolences about your FIL. Roses are so cheering. They bring life to a room.

  12. So sorry to hear that you have lost your father-in-law. It sounds as though he will be missed greatly. x
    The paprika certainly made a mess....... mental note at my end too..... to avoid doing the same.....

  13. So sorry to hear about your father in law. It's comforting to have family around at sad times - travel safely!

    That paprika really is a gorgeous colour (though such a mess). I love mock tuna salad... must really try to make some soon for a change in lunches. I bought those Minion cookies too... they were apparently a giant flop with my kidlets and I had much trouble foisting them off onto others as well. Minion marketing is evil! :)

  14. haha I'm sure you're not the only one who has overspilled spice all over their kitchen!
    The dumplings look delicious!

    Sorry to hear about your father in law. I hope your trip goes well.

  15. Condolences to your family regarding your recent loss. It will be an important time, catching up with family in Scotland.
    I must confess that I have never made dumplings but love going to little dumpling shops where they make them- one in a lane in Preston near the market makes great vegetarian dumplings.
    Yours look very tasty.

  16. All our love & thoughts go out to your family at your loss - be kind to yourselves. Your dumplings look great - I also make my own, from scratch, including the wrappers and love potstickers (fried bottoms then steamed) Here's my recipe to create the perfect potsticker Even thought they're not vegetarian), works every time - Good luck, let me know how you go.
    Have a lovely time in Paris (so jealous!) Be safe & take care of yourselves xx #IMK

  17. very sorry to hear about your father in law. so sad for you not to have been there. no chance to say goodbye. i love minions too! i seem to have a few little figurines around the house. we go thru a heap of chickpeas in this house. salads, stews, stir fries. they are great in them all.


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