In My Kitchen – January 2020

Happy New Year everyone, wishing you all a peaceful and joyous year. We had a lovely Christmas, Casey and Quinn were especially pleased with their gifts.

Aussies with their new 'babies'

Casey and Quinn with their Christmas gifts

They do love their stuffed toys and carry them around in their mouths to greet us.

The flags on the front of our home spell out Happy New Year in international flag language. It’s the picture at the top of this post as well as this one.

Happy New Year with Casey and Quinn

The flags spell Happy New Year in international flag language

This January posting of In My Kitchen (also known as IMK) is part of a monthly gathering of posts from kitchens around the world. It’s fascinating to read what is new and notable from the Southern Hemisphere as well as the U.S. and Europe. Please do click on the link to Sherrys Pickings to read them all.

So what’s new in my kitchen? These nifty silicone egg cups are designed for using in the Instant Pot to make a copy of the Starbucks sous vide egg bites. I have made a version sous vide, which turned out ok. Butt there are a lot of recipes online and I am looking forward to trying them all. The egg cups came with a lid and a carrying tray to make it easy to remove them from the electric pressure cooker.

Silicone Egg Cups

Silicone Egg Cups

Silicone Egg Cups

Silicone Egg Cups

I will post the recipe if it turns out to be edible.

In my kitchen I have one last pear from the boxes my brother and sister-in-law sent for Christmas. They came from Harry and David in Oregon and are the best pears in the world, absolutely delicious.

Pear from Harry and David

Pear from Harry and David

It’s a tradition that we send each other pears before the holiday. This year I put one in the fridge and it delayed the ripening enough that we enjoyed each and every one. They are delicious with some cheese and walnuts for dessert.

In my kitchen I have some black rice.

Italian Black Rice

Italian Black Rice

Have any of you tried it? Do you have any recipes? The rice came from a small Italian deli and shop that just opened in town. The rice looks a bit like wild rice and they told me it cooks up nutty and a little firmer than regular rice. I’ll let you know how it turns out. They have lots of very interesting imported items. I also bought a jar of sun dried cherry tomatoes in olive oil and some lovely anchovies.

Sun Dried Tomatoes and Anchovies

Sun Dried Tomatoes and Anchovies

I find most sun dried tomatoes, even the ones in olive oil, rubbery and unpleasant with hard bits. I have made them myself and prefer them just before they are completely dried. I look forward to sampling these.

I was intrigued by these new products I found at the grocery store…


RightRice, made from vegetables

RightRice is a blend of lentils, chickpeas, and rice. There were several varieties but these looked the most interesting to me. They claim to be more nutritious and higher in protein than regular rice.

The farm stand down the road was open today and I purchased these lovely carrots and a bunch of dino kale.


Another product to try is this organic sprouted blend of brown rice, millet and quinoa. One of my resolutions for 2020 is to add more whole grains to our diet.

Earthly Choice

Sprouted Brown Rice, Millet, Quinoa

And what would the holidays be without at least one new cookbook? This one about exploring the South of Italy. We listen to podcasts on our way back and forth from Fort Bragg to our apartment in Oakland. Katie Parla was featured on one and had fascinating stories about the food of Southern Italy as well as the history. It’s a cookbook to read as well as cook from.

Food of the Italian South

Food of the Italian South

And lastly I will leave you with some wonderful pictures from a Christmas walk. In the hills above Oakland there is a marvelous system of parks and trails. Each year at this time the ladybugs migrate and congregate in one area. It’s always magical to come across them. If the sun is warm and shines on them, they will fly into the air as a swarm and you can hear the clicking of their wings.


Again, Happy New Year to you all, and prayers to my blogging friends in Australia for their safety.




16 thoughts on “In My Kitchen – January 2020

  1. Happy New Year! I wish an Italian deli would open here! How lucky you are! Some goodies for sure. I really prefer anchovies in a jar, rather than canned. Cute doggies! I hope 2020 is fabulous for you and yours!

    • Thank you so much Mimi. I agree, the jarred ones are much better. These looked wonderful. I’m lucky that everyone in the household loves anchovies.

  2. Your new products look healthy and tasty. I hope you enjoy your expanded options in the kitchen.

    best… mae at

  3. Happy New Decade! The dogs are so cute.
    I’m intrigued with your egg cup maker. I’ll be interested to learn of it’s success or failure. My wife made a black rice stuffing for Christmas that was excellent. I think the recipe is in Swedish, but we can translate and sent you the recipe if you like.

    • That’s right, it is a decade. Ron, I would love the recipe. Thank you. I haven’t ever seen black rice from Italy although I have cooked with forbidden rice from China.

  4. Lots of lovely goodies in your kitchen Liz. I have a few friends that own an Insta pot and say it’s a wonderful kitchen appliance to have. I am with you on shop bought dried tomatoes and I too prefer making my own. Long time since I’ve seen lady bugs… and so many 🙂 Your dogs are adorable. Have a great new year.

    • Thank you Moya, I hope 2020 is good to you. Mine isn’t an InstantPot but an electric pressure cooker very like it. I use it sporadically unlike some who were on the slow cooker craze and now are on the InstantPot bandwagon. But it is very useful for soups and stews. It has some surprising successes like chicken drumsticks.

      • If things ever calm down around here I am going to do some comparison cooking of the Starbucks egg bites. Let me know if you have any successes. I’ve make them sous vide and they are good but not perfect.

  5. happy new year Liz, and thanks for joining in with IMK this month. i am an anchovy fan especially white ones! they are so tender and mild usually. i prefer sem-dried tomatoes in oil, i have to say. just that little bit softer and sweeter. your dogs are adorable, and the flags are a lovely idea. happy new year to you and yours! sherry

    • Thank you Sherry, I think I got in just under the wire this month. It’s such a wonderful link party, I look forward to reading everyone’s post each month. Thank you so much for continuing to host.

    • They deserve a blog of their own! The ladybugs are always a treat to find. And, I put out praying mantis egg cases each year. I was around when one of them hatched and it was fun to see all the tiny babies. But I rarely see an adult. They must be very good at hiding. Happy New Year! I hope 2020 is good for us all.

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