Local Heart, Global Soul

August 20, 2013

Hmm… I Wonder If I Can Convince My Kids to be Scullery Maids and Masters?

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The next page of my last summer’s travel diary finds me in a place I hardly want to leave… a Stately Home kitchen.

As the proud owner of a miniscule 1930’s Dutch kitchen, I struggle with space, and of course have only recently graduated to a large oven… but even so, I still find myself with serious  and incurable oven-envy when I come into this kitchen at Audley End House.

As with the laundry it’s located a little way off the house because of fire hazard  but it’s beautiful inside all the same.

It’s not just just humongous coal range that has the Wow factor and some… but also in a separate alcove, a huge bread oven in the wall with another coal range along side.

Judging by the very large square copper kettle on the top, possibly this one was for a plentiful supply of hot water.

Himself and the kids did the whistle stop tour of the kitchen and then bounced back outside to burn off some energy… Leaving our visiting Singaporean friend “Velvetine” (also a fellow Foodie) and I free to browse at leisure and drool  excitedly together over copper pot and pans, jelly molds, and coal ranges in peace.

No doubt some other visitors overheard our back and forth delighted shrieks and exclamations of new discoveries of beautiful kitchen items and probably assumed we were somewhat deranged, but any fellow foodie would have well understood.

I soooo want a kitchen this big… with a few high tech electrical additions discreetly incorporated of course.. and a few scullery maids to do the washing up. (no wait…  maybe I can rope in my kids on that one).

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

August 14, 2012

Self-Raising Star or a Half-Baked Idea?

Filed under: Funny,New Zealand,photography,Travel — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , , ,

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Sometimes you seriously wonder what people are thinking…

we come to the tiny, minuscule,  small town of Manaia  and I see something that grabs my eye by the side of the road.

Naturally the local residents want to put their town on the map…  but they’ve done it with the unlikely title of “Bread Capital”

…  hmmm, the sign doesn’t say if that’s Bread Capital of New Zealand or (gasp) of the world… but seriously,  is there really any dough at all to be made in this title?

So, if like me you had no clue before now that New Zealand had a “Bread Capital”, now you can add this to your list of very weird, obscure facts and ideas to stump the next know-it-all at trivial pursuit…

and I have photographic evidence to “prove” that this might just be a “rising” star of the area..  or a “half baked” idea?    Who knows? (and yes I realise the sign says “farewell from”  but  this really is a blink-and-you-missed-it sort of place so we were through the town before we knew it and I didn’t see bread signs on the way in).

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

March 3, 2012

Step-by-Step Bread in Your BBQ!

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

My cousin “P” in Christchurch, New Zealand is a fellow Foodie. He’s got a large BBQ that has a close-down lid which he and his wife “G” use ..to bake bread!

Having proved his dough he asked Kiwi Daughter if she wanted to make some shapes before putting it in the oven.

She tried her hand at a plait (braid), a smilie face and a knot that didn’t quite knot. (or should I have maybe phrased that instead as a “knot that knotted not” ? )

Soon all the pieces were ready to be put onto the unglazed tile that was already pre-heating in the BBQ, then a lid went down and we let it do it’s stuff.

A very short time later, Et Voila! Freshly baked bread… very hot out of the oven… we let it cool a little and then dig in with “P’s” home-made dukka and some olive oil.

Kiwi Daugher wants to help me when I attempt to make bread back in The Netherlands. We will have to do some improvising since our BBQ doesn’t have a lid.

I forsee some tile hunting will be necessary too and maybe our oven will have to surfice, but watch this space for Kiwidutch’s first steps into bread adventures sometime in the future. Let’s see how Kiwi Daughter’s first efforts fared…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Yum!!!

September 2, 2011

Comparing Dinner to Lunch and being Ruined for Life…

Filed under: Cape Verde,Food,Travel — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , , ,

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Still on my 2007  retro tour of Sal in the Cape Verde islands, we have found that cooking back at our self catering accomodation is limited by  the difficulties of obtaining the ingredients in the quantities we want and the cooking space and equipment available.

Eating out is not terribly expensive so we  decide to head to the resautant that’s  not too far from the pier, on the beachfront  for dinner.

We had been here earlier in the day, for lunch  and returned  in the evening becuase we had been impressed. I’ve got a combination of our lunchtime and evening menu photos here.

Kiwi’s Best Friend had lobster for lunch, she scored it high on the yummy scale, and  had a deep fried cheese appy to go wiith it, the verdict on the cheesy thing  was ” looked divine, taste somewhat lacking”

Kiwi’s Best Friend had sampled some of my lunchtime tuna and loved it so ordered the tuna for dinner … I tried some too… it was good but was not nearly as good my lunch plate….  Different chef perhaps?

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Wanting a change from tuna  I opted for the grilled fish for dinner and it was  quite tasty actually, especially compared to some of the others.. ton of tiny bones made it a hassle though…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Himself couldn’t resist the lure of reasonably priced mega fresh lobster… we hardly got a word out of him becuase he was constantly busy eating with a look of bliss on his face.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Ordering the bread here was the best and worst thing I have probably ever done in my life. It was beyond divine. It’s arguably the best combination of garlic and bread I have ever eaten, the garlic was intense but not with that “raw” kind of taste you sometimes get when you have a mega heap of garlic…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

I want all garlic bread to be like this.. forever and ever. This one has probably ruined me becuase few will ever measure up to this again in my lifetime. (sigh) I wrote this note when we were on Sal and sadly no garlic bread I have had since has been as good.

This bread has ruined me for life…   I have this bread in mind each and every time I make my own garlic butter concoctions to go on bread… I keep trying, but in all honesty, I haven’t even gotten close.

Oh well, everyone needs a Life Challenge,  “To attempt to match this garlic bread perfection“… (happy sigh) …someone’s gotta do it.

November 22, 2010

Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread…

Filed under: photography,Portugal — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , , ,

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

It’s no secret that I adore the taste of Portuguese bread.

Not only does it taste amazing but it also is very photogenic.

I do have a secret that you might not know though…

and that is that I simply adore photographing all bread…

Bread is a favourite topic of mine, the crustiness, flouriness, the contrast between the textures  just captivates me.

And surely you will agree,

That these fine examples of the Baker’s Art show…

Portuguese bread is beautiful

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

sigh…. so basic a commodity, but heavenly simplicity….

September 13, 2010

Désolé, Monsieur Baguette, but the Portuguese do it better…

Filed under: Portugal — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: ,

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

There is one thing in Portugal that I simply adore coming back to… something simple and rustic and very very basic.

The bread.

People tend to rave about France’s  iconic Baguette, and granted I’ve been guilty of stuffing myself whilst lazing in the garden of a French Gîte, but I have to let you into a well kept secret;  in a head-to-head show-down between traditional Portuguese bread and la Baguette, it will be the Portuguese  offering that wins hands down every time.

The texture of each is similar but there are also subtle differences.

Of course the very fact that it’s white bread is already a novelty for Family Kiwidutch who are 100% consumers of brown bread / whole grain when at home. Portuguese bread, either in loaves or rolls is simply a divine way to start your day.

I’m not usually a bread eater, preferring  fruit for breakfast, but  Portuguese bread has had me addicted, and if history is anything to go by,  I will probably eat as much bread for breakfast whilst on holiday in Portugal as I will for the entire  rest of the year in the Netherlands. … and I’ll like it, nay love it.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Go figure.

The breakfast offerings are simple but fine… Kiwi Daughter has already pounced on the brioche style cake, whilst Little Mr has spied the croissants.

Sadly for our children these are a disappointment. Not the flaky, buttery French style croissant at all, but rather a spongy  rather heavy bread that is distinctly different in both flavour and texture than the other Portuguese bread I’m adoring.

In fact the single resemblance to a croissant is in the shape, and once the kids discover that, these get a quick thumbs down.  I tried a bite, and tried to like them, but also failed to find them appealing, especially with the other rolls being light years ahead in taste.

Oh well… we learn the hard way, and since Kiwi Daughter discovers watermelon in the fruit section, she finds herself a happy alternative.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

yet another shot of this excellent bread…. (It’s should be on a list as one of the greatest reasons to visit Portugal!)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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