Tuesday, May 31, 2011

A little break from the Patch kitchen and Happy 1st Birthday to this blog.

Last week, loaded up with home produce, I headed to Hobart for a few days to see my daughter. It was also an opportunity to try out a few delicacies of the south and to visit the new MONA museum.
Salamanca Market is a must for anyone visiting Hobart on Saturdays and while there I bought some cheese from two stalls, Bruny Island Cheese and Grandvewe Cheeses.
Bruny Island Cheese make a very strong flavoured washed rind cheese wrapped in vine leaves called OEN. I had to share it with my daughter so this is what made it home. It is wrapped in plastic wrap so that it doesn't smell the fridge out!  From Grandvewe Cheese I tried some Primavera, a Manchego style sheep's cheese (which tasted nothing like the Manchego I made late last year) and some beautiful Persian style Feta also made from sheep's milk. On a slice of sourdough bread - what more could you want for lunch before hours of walking around the fabulous MONA museum.

1620 individual paintings make up Sidney Nolan's Snake and until David Walsh build a museum to put them in, they have probably been just sitting in piles in a storeroom for 40 years. Well worth a visit for anyone coming to Tasmania. I spent 3 hours doing lots of walking around with the "O" iPod  to guide me and still missed some of the artworks.
I can't believe it is one year ago today that I first started writing this blog.....visitors from 63 countries, 3300 page views by 1337 individuals have visited. Thank you to all my visitors.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Pickled Red Cabbage for cold winter nights.

This year for the first time I have grown red cabbage. After my not so successful foray into sauerkraut making last year - well it was partially successful, it was just that I didn't like the flavour much- I thought maybe pickled red cabbage might be a better option. It looks much prettier anyway.
So I picked the first cabbage on the weekend. First it was layered with some sliced onion, sprinkling salt between the layers and leaving it to sit overnight.
Next day. I rinsed the cabbage and let it air dry. While it was drying I made up a pickling vinegar with vinegar and various spices.
The cabbage was then packed it into bottles.
And covered with the pickling vinegar.Now it has to sit for a month or so before we can taste it.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Tomato Chutney

I am still picking a few tomatoes each weekend but gradually am pulling out the plants as they die off. Maybe next weekend will see the last of them for this season. I have lots of preserved puree and paste plus dried tomatoes to last us the rest of the year. Last weekend I finally got around to making some simple Tomato Chutney with tomatoes and apples.A few jars of this will see us right as we don't eat much of it.
I have also been making some more cheese but no new recipes. Having enjoyed the Pyrenees with Tasmanian Peppers so much, I have made another wheel almost ready to wax. I am having another go at some Camembert again - using a different recipe again. Hopefully these won't end up in the bin like the last lot which never matured despite developing the proper white mould.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Cheese Tasting Time

Sorry no photos this time.....and that's because we ate it or I rewaxed the leftovers before I thought about putting it on my blog! The other night when Jennie came home for a surprise Easter visit, we thought we had better have a cheese tasting session. The Pyrenees with mountain pepper, Cotswold and left over Wensleydale were on the chopping board. First cab off the rank was the Mountain Pepper Pyrenees, made in early January so now almost 4 months old. It was very crumbly but the mountain peppers gave it a lovely flavour - big tick of approval. Next the Cotswold, made in March so only just over a month old. This one was flavoured with dried onion and chives which gave it flavour however, the recipe had no salt in it - direct added or via brine so it was a really weird taste. The texture was quite nice - sort of like a gouda but not sure I liked the salt free version. I checked the recipe in Artisan Cheeses that I followed and I hadn't made a mistake, no salt. I wonder if it was a typo as there is no other recipe in the book that is salt-less. The Wensleydale, we first tried in January at one month old so now it is (or rather was) 4 months old -   tick for flavour and texture. I will have to do that one again as we have none left in the cave anymore. The Gremmental is now in the cheese cave having sat out for 3 weeks in a warm room. It didn't explode but those big cracks are still there. Have to wait a few months to see what happens.