January 2016 – In My Kitchen

Happy New Year to you all!

This post is part of an ongoing monthly blogging party,  In My Kitchen, hosted by Maureen at The Orgasmic Chef. Click on the link to view January kitchens from around the world.

Where did the holidays go? My head is still spinning, but I had a wonderful time and hope you did as well.

From my kitchen I can see into the den where the Christmas tree still stands, we will be taking it down this weekend and calling an official end to the holidays. I’m holding on just a little longer.

Christmas 2015

Christmas 2015

My kitchen has been busy, making food to share during the holidays and preparing for our annual New Year’s Day Chili Feast. This year there were three types (they change every year) – beef with black beans, chicken jalapeño popper (made in the slow cooker), and butternut squash/black bean vegetarian. My neighbor brought over a second vegetarian chili that her husband had made.  Delicious! I will be posting the recipes with my changes and the links to the originals.

In my kitchen (rather in my freezer) I have leftover chili, my best friend on a busy night.

Slow Cooked Beef with Black Beans

Slow Cooked Beef with Black Beans

Chicken Jalapeno Popper Chili in the Slow Cooker

Chicken Jalapeno Popper Chili in the Slow Cooker

Vegetarian Chili with Butternut Squash

Vegetarian Chili with Butternut Squash

The pictures were taken hastily as the crowd assembled. The best thing about the beef and chicken chilis was that the beans cooked in the stock, there was no need for presoaking and cooking the beans.

In my kitchen I have smoked rice.

Smoked Basmati Rice

Smoked Basmati Rice

I first read about this intriguing ingredient in another IMK post several months ago and have been on the hunt. I’m looking forward to testing out some recipes.

In my kitchen I have a lovely stained glass dish shaped like a leaf, a gift from a friend. She knew I was partial to botanical things.

Stained Glass Leaf

Stained Glass Leaf

In my kitchen I have daffodils, a reminder that spring is coming. The bulbs are pushing themselves up out of the ground from all the welcome rain. I’m enjoying their cheerful color on the kitchen table.

Daffodils

Daffodils

In my kitchen I have new cookbooks, gifts from my husband.

2015 new cookbooks

2015 new cookbooks

A look at the Christmas cookbook recommendations from our local paper was frankly disappointing. Many of them were written by chefs from fancy restaurants and aren’t practical for the home kitchen.

There were two exceptions to my rant above, or what could easily become a rant if I let myself go.

Hartwood interested me because of the “back story”. Two restauranteurs from New York who give it all up to start a restaurant without electricity in the Yucatan, an adventure story.

Camino

Camino

And, I had to have This is Camino because the restaurant Camino is just down the street and one of our favorites. I’ve already modified and made the roast duck  recipe, it was delicious. Interestingly both these restaurants cook over wood…I see some experimenting in my future.

Roast Garlic Potato Chips

Roast Garlic Potato Chips

In my kitchen I have roast garlic potato chips which are addictive and dangerous. I made them as a snack to have with champagne for Christmas dinner.

Mandarin Oranges

Mandarin Oranges

In my kitchen I have Mandarin oranges, a good luck gift on New Year’s Day. Decidedly healthier than the potato chips!

And from my kitchen I can see our four legged friends, just hanging out and waiting for Mom to get off the computer.

This is Lucy, you are in trouble if you disturb her

This is Lucy, you are in trouble if you disturb her

Quinn, baking herself to a crisp by the fire

Quinn, baking herself to a crisp by the fire

Casey: When's Dad coming home? Is it time for a walk?

Casey: When’s Dad coming home? Is it time for a walk? It’s not raining right now.

I wish you all a wonderful 2016 filled with love, laughter, and prosperity.

20 thoughts on “January 2016 – In My Kitchen

  1. Your tree is gorgeous and I groaned a bit with envy at your new cookbooks. I want them all. Your 4-legged best friends are very cute too. Please don’t rush Spring as we’re just settling in with summer down here.

    Thanks a lot for being part of In My Kitchen!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Maureen, my husband knows the way to my heart (and his own stomach).

      I agree. I’m not quite ready for summer yet, last year was so dry and filled with worry about forest fires and the lack of water. I do groan with envy at the tomatoes out your way though, here they are not worth eating right now. I will have to wait until July.

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  2. Wonderful chili spread from your kitchen. I’m also intrigued with that smoked basmati rice, what did it taste like? I don’t believe I’ve ever encountered that before? Your furry friends are so sweet, Happy New Year Liz.

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    • Hi Loretta, I have not been very active in the kitchen lately and have not tried it. Or, I have been active, but the recipes are tried and true and somehow I don’t feel like they are good enough to post. My problem…I will let you know when I get around to cooking with them. We are in the midst of preparing for a remodel of our kitchen.

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  3. Liz, your Christmas tree was absolutely magical — so lovely! The 3 kinds of chili (4, counting your neighbor’s) were a wonderful variety of flavors to offer — looking forward to your recipes. I can only imagine how much fun you’ll have cooking your way through that stack of cookbooks! Also, I’m not a botanist, but your stained glass leaf gift appealed to me, too… I love green glass things. (And trees!) Cute, cozy furry friends, too. 🙂 Happy New Year!

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    • Hi Kim, Happy New Year and thank you for visiting. I hope you are settled in your new home. I need to get busy writing don’t I? I’ve been too busy cooking, working, eating, and not taking enough pictures! We are also remodeling our second home on the coast in hopes of it being our first home sometime early next year. I know you have been through big moves (although sad ones) yourself. It takes over your life.

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  4. I’m quite taken with your new cookbooks, as well as food good cook books have a story to them. And with your four legged friends, I do miss having them for company in and around my kitchen… at the moment we have a ‘share’ cat who comes & goes when it suits her.

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  5. What a gorgeous tree! I want most of those cookbooks, your husband certainly has great taste. The chili day sounds great as well, that reminds me my freezer stash is about gone.

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  6. Enjoy your new cookbooks Liz and your husband was very thoughtful buying you so many. It’s always a pleasure trying out new recipes. Your pets look so cosy by the fire and curled up on the chair 🙂

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