October “In My Kitchen”

If I had to choose a favorite month of the year, it would be October. Not only because it is my birthday month (that has become less popular as the years roll on), but because it marks a major shift in the weather. And thus, the types of food I cook.

Spring sneaks up on me, there is no sudden change. It’s a slow transition. Somehow autumn is different. The first winter rains usually happen in late October, the trees start to change color, Β and the mornings are crisp. It seems to happen overnight. I want to re-decorate my house in oranges, reds, and yellows. Early October is hot, sometimes the warmest of the year in an area with Indian summer. And then, it’s not. It’s sudden.

What’s new in my kitchen this month?IMG_3649

There are some new cookbooks, two of them (The River Cafe Cook Book and What Katie Ate) are for the on-line cookbook club, The Cookbook Guru. Please join us if you love and collect cookbooks as I do. It’s wonderful to be challenged to try new dishes and spices. Don’t you think that cooking can become boring very easily?


In my kitchen I have chocolate.IMG_3647

And more chocolate! The shopping list said ketchup and chocolate, a request from my family, and permission to go wild!

On a healthy note I have started to use my Spiralizer, it replaced pasta on a recent evening with a simple marinara sauce.

Spiralized Zucchini

Spiralized Zucchini

In my kitchen I have a new spicy marinade and sauce.

Nothing unpronounceable in the ingredient list. So far I’ve used it as a marinade for salmon and a quick sauce in a stir fry. Both were good.IMG_3661

In my kitchen I have a bottle of Saba. Are you wondering what it is? I’ve found it similar to a good aged balsamic vinegar. Saba is a syrup made from freshly squeezed grape juice, also known as must. Grape must contains many of the sugars naturally present in the grape, and when it is slowly cooked into a syrup, it develops into a very rich, concentrated foodstuff that can be used in a wide assortment of ways. Saba is most closely associated with Abruzzese cuisine in Italy, although it is used in other regions of Italy as well, and it is a popular offering at Mediterranean-inspired restaurants overseas.


And lastly, in my kitchen I have apples. These are golden delicious and they were very sweet. I picked them up from a road side stand in the middle of an apple orchard. The trees were old and gnarly but beautiful.


What is new in your kitchen? This post is part of a regular monthly blogging event “In My Kitchen” hosted by Celia from Fig Jam and Lime Cordial. Click on the link to get a glimpse of what is happening in kitchens around the globe.

36 thoughts on “October “In My Kitchen”

  1. October is a lovely month! Looking at your courgette I need to locate my spiraliser and get started! I have never heard of Saba but it sounds delicious and I need to keep an eye out for it and try it! πŸ™‚

    • I have only really just started using it so will let you know. There are some interesting recipes for sweet potatoes, carrots and other veggies spiralized and roasted to crispness. I am going to try them and post. And always, zucchini to replace pasta (delicious but not really pasta).

  2. Liz, Happy Birthday! (And who’s counting?!) πŸ˜‰ Hope you have a delightful day, xo. October is my favorite month, too, even though it seems to catapult us into the “W” season. I’ve been debating about acquiring a spiralizer, but your “zoodles” photo convinced me, thanks!

    • Hi Kim, I try NOT to count. It’s about how you feel, right? The zucchini noodles are actually very good, but certainly not pasta. I think they are also good simply dressed with a good vinaigrette and some shredded parmesan. They are so thin that the vinegar will cook them slightly.

      • Oh! I like your vinaigrette & Parmesan suggestion — thanks, Liz. I keep racking up “mileage” too (birthday-wise), but you’re absolutely right — it’s how you FEEL. I feel pretty good and hope you do, too! πŸ™‚

  3. I really need to break out my spiraliser now that the warmer weather is here (though I wish it were autumn!) The saba is very interesting, I’ll have to check that out too. Thanks!

  4. I hope you had some of that chocolate for your BD and hope it was/is a great one! I loved hearing about everything! I’m going to have to checkout the cookbook guru – I thought about it once…and yes, cooking can get boring sometimes – I don’t know why; I guess it’s inspiration, or cooking for others and their tastes, time? Fantastic post!

    • It was a wonderful birthday, thank you. Working around other peoples tastes is sometimes a challenge (my son is refusing to eat beef because of the amount of water used in producing a pound of meat), being in a hurry to dinner on the table when I get done with work also negatively impacts creativity.

    • Hi Jennifer, we would love for you to join us. The one for Nov/Dec (What Katie Ate) looks particularly interesting. I have way tooooo many cookbooks but I love them. I have some from my mother and grandmother that are very precious. And, isn’t it amazing how they have changed over the years?

    • We don’t get much seasonal change, the weather in San Francisco is very moderate. No snow, rare frosts, mostly cooler summers because of the coast. Winter is rain…usually, and fingers crossed. I have a chocolate jar in the cupboard, there are great complaints when it is empty. I don’t make a lot of sweets so a square of chocolate serves as dessert.

  5. I love Lindt Chocolate! I even like the 90%. Although, admittedly, I like to eat it with peanut butter slathered on and sprinkled with raisins and nuts! I really want to try the coconut. I’ll have to go on a Lindt search! Umm, those golden delicious look so tasty and your description of the trees is just beautiful. I love eating all those autumn fruits like apples and pears.
    I am really looking forward to seeing what you make from your Cookbook Guru cookbooks. I think this sounds like a great idea but at the moment I am not in a position to join – my kitchen is not my own but when I have my own place again, I’ll definitely have to participate!
    thanks again for the glimpse into your kitchen!

    • Hi Maggie, I visited the Lindt factory in Cologne a few years ago. They had a fountain of liquid chocolate in the lobby! Peanut butter with raisins and nuts, yum! My favorite chocolate has raisins and nuts in it, but I am the only one in my household who has that preference.

      We wold love to have you join our cook book club. It’s such fun to get insights from other folks.

  6. I too am a HUGE October lover! My anniversary falls this month and the hubby’s birthday. I LOVE when the weather changes, it’s my absolute favorite time of year πŸ™‚ Love these fun new things in your kitchen post, it’s a great idea!

  7. Every time I see vegetables cut using a spiralizer it makes me want to buy one, definitely healthier than pasta πŸ™‚ I want to be in your kitchen with all that lovely chocolate. Happy birthday for October Liz πŸ™‚

  8. Spring never sneaks up on us here in Qld. One day it is winter, the next spring and then poof, that is gone within a few weeks and we are straight into summer, well ahead of schedule. Lindt Sea Salt – a favourite in this household. I love the sound of Saba and when I looked it up, found out it is also known as vincotto which I have in my own cupboard. Always good to add new words to my culinary lexicon. cheers

    • Summer came early on our side of the world as well, and still hasn’t completely lost it’s grip on us. We had a lot of hot weather this year and not much fog. Now the nights are starting to be cooler but days are still quite warm. I will be drooling over your summer produce come December.

  9. I love the idea of the spiralizer- I think the sweet potatoes would be excellent that way- crispy and crunchy. I think October is one of my fav months as well- everyone here in New England KNOWS what’s coming and knows they need to take advantage of the last wonderful crisp days, and impossible blue skies. Thanks for posting- I love your recipes!

    • Hi Sherry, I have had a serious cookbook addiction for years. My collection spills out all over the house. Saba is a thick syrup made by slowly cooking down grape juice and concentrating it, it’s more similar to a really good balsamic. from a comment below I learned that in Italy it is called vincotto.

      Verjus is a vinegar made from grape juice. I understand it is more often used in Syrian cooking.

    • Thank you Celia, can you believe it is almost November!? Time for a new IMK. I think my cookbook collection is taking over the house.

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