My favorite book in the kitchen

I know- this is a little early for an IMK post, but I’ve

been searching high and low for this book and finally found it!

It was in my kitchen- hidden between two cookbooks in the pantry


I collect cookbooks- or I used to collect them.  Then I got hooked on

the internet and all the recipes on blogs and websites and well, my

collecting days seem to be over.



THIS book remains my favorite book for perusing in the kitchen!

It is an Australian book, published in 2000- and I just love it.

I spent 2 hours yesterday poring over photos and reading about the ingredients

of cooking, baking,drinking, FOOD, glorious,FOOD!



from fruit…



to fish.


And of course,


cheese- this book has it all!  I can look up cuts of meat, unfamiliar spices, types of breads

and grains!  And I lose myself in all of these wondrous ingredients.

I am so happy I found it again.  I find it an essential part of reading blogs- otherwise, I’m

scratching my head and wondering WHAT they are suggesting I roast for dinner?

Summertime. (and the livin’ is easy)*




It is summertime and I needed to remind myself of that fact.  We have been

so inundated with rain and floods, tornadoes all around us for the last 3 weeks

or so that I’ve kind of lost sight of the dates.  It is almost mid-July- this would have

been my mother’s 95th birthday.   And she would have loved being that old and

alive.  She would have loved MY grandsons- loved to see Jordan and Luke getting

settled in their lives- she loved living.  Everyday she would celebrate life.

I miss her.

I never saw my mother depressed.  ANGRY- inquisitive- loving- worried- determined-

whimsical- yes to all of those – but never depressed.

I take after her in a lot of things, but she was made of tougher stuff than I am.

I grew up determined not to be like my mother.

I vowed I would be different.

And now, sometimes,

I wish I were more like her.

Summertime with Ella and Satchmo

Mommy and Daddy

Happy Birthday, Mom.

Leek and cardamom fritters- recipe


My daughter in law, Willow, introduced me to these – she is a marvelous cook.   What I like

best about Willow’s cooking is that she knows no fear.  She follows recipes and patterns-

adapts freely according to what she has in stock and offers it up with a panache that invites

you to enjoy her creation along with her.

I am pretty much a pushover when it comes to 1) cardamom, 2)fritters, and 3) Leeks- so this

recipe was almost tailor made for me to try.  Let me warn you- there are a lot of steps- and it

is a little fiddley- but I think the fritters are totally worth it for a special occasion- and the recipe

makes a LOT of fritters that are really good as left overs.

This recipe is an adaptation from a Yotam Ottolenghi creation- but I have not seen the original

recipe and I adapted the one I did see- so and adaptation of an adaptation.



Ingredients: and method

About 1/2 cup of olive oil

3 leeks, carefully cleaned and thinly sliced} sautee leeks and

1 medium sweet onion, chopped fine} onion in 3 TBS oil for 10-15 minutes.

1 tsp. ground cumin

1/2 tsp ground coriander

1/2 tsp ground cardamom

1/4 tsp  or less ground cinnamon

Mix together spices and add to sautee after 10 minutes, cook another 5 minutes.


1/2 tsp hot chili paste or one hot Thai pepper seeded, sliced

1 cup chopped fresh parsley

2/3 cup chopped cilantro

6 oz ricotta or cottage cheese

Cool spices and leek/onion mix and add to herb, pepper and cheese mixture.

Add 1 tsp salt and set aside.

in another bowl, mix together:

1 cup AP flour

1 1/2 tsps baking powder

1 whole egg

1/2 cup milk

4 TBS melted butter

Beat until you have a smooth batter.

Whip one egg white to soft peak and fold into cooked leek mixture, then

fold entire mixture into the batter.


Fry on medium high heat with olive oil about 4 to 5 minutes a side- be careful

not to make them too thick.  Brown to golden and serve hot- with lemon wedges,

if desired.


I drained them on paper towel before serving.

In My Kitchen-July 2013


In my kitchen are lavender wands!  I’ve been weaving them over the weekend-


after picking them from the bed by the fence( the little guy is my grandson, Kieran!).

Lavender wands and …

In my kitchen


rosemary brushes.  I picked a bunch for baking some chicken and decided to use

some for decoration.


because I picked a lot from the bush!

In my kitchen…


a new tea pot.  Not that I NEEDED a new pot- but it was only $3 at a sidewalk sale.


And the little bird on top rather spoke to my sense of whimsy.

In my kitchen…


are black radishes.  They were supposed to taste a bit like horse radish- but no.  In fact

they were rather mild.

In my kitchen…I


cukes and squash and peas- alas not from my garden, yet!

In my kitchen…


leek and cardamom fritters.  Recipe coming up soon!

If you’d like to see other kitchen posts look here- at Celia’s blog- Fig Jam and Lime Cordial.