Tuesday, 7 February 2017

In My Kitchen February

In my kitchen this February, I have lots of citrus fruit: oranges, limes and lemons. 
I have had a sore throat for a long while and am on antibiotics.  The doctors can't figure out what is wrong and I am on a waiting list to see a specialist.  I have tried lots of over the counter medicine, but had to resort going to the doctors eventually. 
I am trying to drink a lot more water, but you know water can be a bit boring, so I have tried to perk it up with some fresh ginger and lemon.



In My kitchen is an organiser gifted to me over Christmas by a work colleague.  I quite like it. I have to admit though that I don't have any wall space and this is hanging inside one of the kitchen cupboards which is a bit of a shame as I have forgotten about it.
Over the weekend we went to the Cardiff Viva Vegan Festival - check out this link if you want to see more.  I came home with a few things, most of which had been consumed on the day. The only two things I have to share with you now are this Dairy Free soy based cheese mimicking quite well the flavour of Camembert.
And some seitan Sticky 'Ribs'.
We finally got to opened the packet of Vegan Italian Gourmet Sausage. For those of you who were curious to see what it looked like once open, here it is (click this link to see it in its original packaging), please note the mottled effect wrapping on the outside was paper, I was surprised at this as I had originally thought it was some kind of edible rice paper. The flavour of the Gourmet Sausage was intense, as someone who used to eat fish - I could only compare the flavour to 'salmon pate' and the colouring too. I'd buy it again, but more with other people in mind next time, its too much for just a couple. 
I am being given more and more additional responsibilities at work (not being recompensed for it though, not yet anyway) and this means that the past couple of weeks I have relied on shop/brand mock meat products for quick evening meals.  One new product that I have tried recently was Dee's vegan Sausages with Irish Dulse Seaweed.  I liked the flavour and it was interesting to see ho the outer vegan sausage skin crisped up, but once it was sliced, it was a little mushy.  I quite liked it, but D did not - for him they did not retain the firmness you'd expect from a  sausage, albeit a vegan or vegetarian one. 
We have also had Quorn Steak and Gravy Pies.  Yes, I know I make awesome homemade pies - but like I said sometimes we pick ready made products purely out of convenience (and other times out of greed or curiousity).  I am not always a fan of Quorn, but my husband thinks the texture is good at least for sausages.  We I have to say we were both impressed with these, on flavour and the chunkiness of the steak pieces, they were proper chunky. 
We have just finished indulging in these homemade Czech cookies made by hand by my good friend at work.  Over the past two years we have become quite close and are able to talk about issues at work that impact on us - you need friends who are on the same wavelength as you and its nice, as I often feel isolated in relation to the work that I do. 
This rather stunning cake stand was also a gift from her too for Christmas.  It adorns our table in the dining room - yes we have a dining room, that becomes library, computer room and close the door and 'leave me the alone' in room.
I found these two quirky Russian Doll mugs in a charity shop a while back.  I thought they were fun and picked them up for my nieces, I don't think they will appreciate them now as they are growing teenagers now, so am a little undecided what to do with them at the moment.
We have lots of chocolate still to eat, all left over from the Christmas and the New Year holidays; and these are only those those that I have taken a photograph of, there are at least four more boxes.
Even though I have been a bit lazy with making some of our evening meals, I have been good at making pasta salads for our working lunch.  Here are two tubs ready to go.  The top is a chilli pasta with pepper, spring onions and black olives; and the one below is Beetroot and Spring Onions.
Look more sweet things: Booja Booja Rhubarb and Vanilla Fool Truffles, also still to be torn open.
And mo chocolate! Please don't ask.  I picked these up at the weekend from the Viva Vegan Food Festival,   Silly of me I know especially as I have lots at home - but I was tempted by the flavours: maple and pecan, chilli and mango and sea salted caramel - yes I am guilty of being greedy.
I have some tubs of Raw Bites: Chia Maca and Peanut and the other is Cacoa and Quinoa.  I figured on the days that I run out of homemade breakfast flapjacks for work, I can fill a small tub and give some to my husband to mucnh on instead, it would make a change for him from the oaty flapjacks.  
I have a number of kitchen related stuff that I got over Christmas that I want to share, but I haven't got round to taking photos of them, but here is one a Baking Kit gift set comprising of 4 mini ceramic pans to bake apple pie or berry pie. The pans are quite cute. 
And finally I found a bag of Winter Berries & Prosecco Hand Cooked Potato Crisps from Marks and Spencers that I picked up for Christmas but forgot about.  I was tempted by the gold edible stars - can you see them?!  The crisps themselves were quite zingy. 


I am sharing this with Lizzy of Bizzy Lizy Good Things for In My Kitchen series.  IMK was started by Celia of Fig Jam and Lime Cordial and its one of my favourite blog events to join in with as I get to nosy in other peoples kitchen, please do join in. 

22 comments:

  1. Lots of lovely things, those biscuits made by your friend look yummy, and the cake stand is so pretty. Hope your throat gets better soon! xx

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    1. Thank you Susie. The throat problem has become a bit of a nuisance really, as I do a lot of speaking with clients at work, so hopefully it will get better but its been months

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  2. Hello there Shaheen, I hope you can get to the bottom of the sore throat issues... there are so many lovely and delicious things in your kitchen. Those mugs are very quirky and cute, and I do love all the vegan goodies too. Thanks for the very kind shout out xx

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    1. Thank you Lizzy. I may give the mugs to my two Eastern European friends at work, i think they may appreciate them - and in that case I may have to fill them up with some goodies.

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  3. Dear Shaheen, I have been suffering with sore throat for as long as I can remember myself but I do remember one episode of over a year constant not being well and having a sore throat. I tried everything but nothing worked. One day I came across a recipe for sore throat: 1 small bunch of fresh sage, 2 cups of hot water, let it infuse. Cool it down and stir in 1 Tbsp soda bicarbonate. Gargle with it a few times in the day and repeat every day until you feel better. Don't drink it, it doesn't taste very nice. xx

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    1. Hi Laura, I am so sorry to hear that you have also been suffering from a sore throat. Thank you so much for your herbal remedy I will try your remedy when the antibiotics finish. I don't like mixing herbal remedies with conventional medicine. Really appreciate you sharing this. I hope your throat is much better.

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  4. Hope you feel better soon and get to see the specialist. I can highly recommend Olive Tea tea for sore throats, I like a brand called Miribilia. We went to Nottingham at the weekend to a vegan market and I thought that cheese company might be there but I see they were in Wales. We got some amazing 'vork' pies though, definitely one to try if you ever see them at a vegan fair.

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    1. Thank you. I am on the waiting list. I will go and see if I can find this particular Olive Tea Tea, where would you recommend I look? Or is it best to order on-line.

      There are def. some fantastic new vegan cheeses on the market and someone who is vegetarian, I do enjoy them. I am going to have a go at making my own soon too. I also make my own Vork pies,
      http://allotment2kitchen.blogspot.co.uk/2009/02/not-pork-pies.html
      but I look forward to trying these if I should ever stumble across the stall holders at a vegan fair

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  5. You have some delicious products - especially the chocolate ones, which as you may guess, catch my eye! I love the colour of the beetroot pasta too and those Czech cookies and Russian dolls are gorgeous.

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    1. Oh Thank you Kari. I thought you might like some things in my kitchen. The beetroot pasta is a breeze to make when you use ready cooked beetroot but not pickled. Do try it. The Czech cookies were amazing, I think i may give those Russian dolls mugs to my two Eastern European work colleagues, I think they will appreciate them - i will have to fill them up with some heart shaped goodies - i think that will be quite a nice surprise for them and a way to say Thank you to them both, they have made the office atmosphere for me much more welcoming than it has been in the past few months - another story.

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  6. I love when you go shopping...and show your gifts. Gorgeous cake plate!

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    1. Thank you so much Brenda.
      Much of these were gifted to me, i certainly was spoiled this Christmas by my husband and some friends.

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  7. Wow so much amazing stuff in your kitchen! Sorry to hear that you have been unwell and taking on a lot at work. Amazing how much blogging you are managing to do considering that! And good to hear you have some good support - that Czech cakes looks good for the soul as well as the tummy. Is that fancy icing on top or packaging? Camembert is a cute name for a vegan cheese. I'd love to try that and rhubarb truffles and crisps with stars on them. I tried Dee's sausages last year and really liked them but not the seaweed ones. And that is impressive that you make your own pasta salads - do you have recipes for them on your blog or similar ones - I tried a pasta salad recently and was not that enthused with it though once I added more seasoning it was ok but not brilliant.

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  8. Thank you Johanna, much of it from the seasonal holidays.
    Its packaging, with a ribbon - but the bear was edible. I will let you know how the rhubarb truffles are when I open them, but its in the cue as the chocolates come before.
    As for the beetroot pasta salad - when i have time I do roast my own beets in balsamic, but i have made do with shortcuts over the years.
    I use ready cooked beetroot still with its juices in shrink wrap (not pickled from jars). Chop it down, add balsamic vinegar and oil to it and its beet juices, season it, the feta cheese is optional. Its all to taste. Hope that helps -
    Here are some beet pasta recipes from the blog too
    http://allotment2kitchen.blogspot.co.uk/2011/02/beetroot-and-cumin-pasta.html

    http://allotment2kitchen.blogspot.co.uk/2012/08/balsamic-roasted-beetroot-dyed-pasta.html

    http://allotment2kitchen.blogspot.co.uk/2011/05/beetroot-pearls.html

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  9. Same for me with the citrus fruits at the moment, I also drink a lot of lemon water at work. I hope your throat feels better soon!

    I also like the other bits and bobs in your kitchen, those pasta salads look nice and I'm glad you found some of those prosecco crisps, I miss them so much! :)

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    1. Thanks.
      I should drink more water at work than I do.

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  10. So many lovely things in your kitchen! I hope you get some answers for your throats soon. Those pasta salads look amazing and that cake stand is almost too pretty to put a cake on. I find I eat most of my vege meat alternatives with other people - it's easy to take to a BBQ or social event, it at home there are so many alternatives I never even think of them. Those quorn pies look tasty

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    1. Thank you Lisa. Your right it is too pretty even for cakes that at the moment it is just sitting elegantly on my table in the dining room without anything on it. The veggie alternatives used to be my option when I went to other peoples homes or places away from home, but in recent months I have found myself trying them, sometimes for convenience and sometimes out of curiosity. The quorn pies were much nicer than some of the other products that lack flavour, this indeed had flavour.

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  11. the cookies are beautiful as is the cake stand. and i love those russian mugs. so being vegan is a religious thing I take it? not sure i could bring myself to eat fake sausages:)

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    1. Thanks Sherry. The Russian doll mugs are quite adorable. No vegan is not a religious thing, i am not religious at all. And I am vegetarian, i still on occasion eat eggs (esp in baked goods) drink milk and use butter. I have just never ever in my life enjoyed the taste of meat, so indulge in mock meat subs now and again, its okay at times - I would not eat them every day.

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  12. Your kitchen is so fun!!! Our kitchen is also very filled with citrus right now (as you saw on IG). I am so very sorry to hear about your throat. That doesn't sound very fun to deal with. I hope you can see a specialist soon to figure it out.
    The vegan gourmet sausage looks eerily like sausage. I always have a hard time when it looks so real haha ;)
    The homemade cookies are so cute. And the cake stand is beautiful. Having a good friend at work is really important. You need someone to talk to when things are stressful and keep things light.
    I think your nieces would appreciate the mugs - I find them to be cute for any age.
    Oh the Booja Booja chocolate! I LOVE rhubarb and it would be great in chocolate. I have never seen anything like that before.
    Those mini ceramic pans are too cute!
    And the gold stars on the chips!!! Love it.

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    1. Thank you Kimmy. Yes, lots of things this time round thanks to Christmas.
      I know what you mean when mock meat looks real, times when I have eaten something at a veggie place and then think, wow was that really mock meat.

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