April 2021 “In My Kitchen”

Hello!   Spring has sprung here.  (Thanks goodness!!!!)   Along with it has come a deep seeded desire to get OUTSIDE.  (Pun intended here.  I  meant to use deep seeded instead of deep seated.)   Cleaning the yard and garden has been our primary task.  Right now we have a HUGE pile of brush to dispense with.

Hope it’s warm and sunny where you are!

In My Kitchen is hosted by Sherry’s Pickings and is a great way to get a glimpse into kitchens around the world.   Here is what’s happening in our little corner.

From L-R: Cheapo to expensive (at least on our budget)

In May, I’ll be hosting Bottle Shock  for Food ‘n Flix.   If you haven’t seen it, it’s a loosely based telling of the Judgement of Paris in 1976, pitting old school French wines against the brash Americans from Napa Valley.   I enjoyed it immensely.  For my foodie posting (spoiler alert), I decided to be ridiculous and host a wine tasting with the following Chardonnays:  Trader Joe’s “Two-buck Chuck,” Chateau Montelena 2018, and Stag’s Leap.

So far, none have been uncorked yet.   I’m waiting to re-watch the film and do that wine tasting.  Look for the announcement post here around May 1.

I’ve kind of been on a wine blitz here lately (at least with buying).   Many years ago, my sister and I found some wine bottled in cool fish bottles at a local big box warehouse store.   We both bought a bottle and repurposed it for olive oil.   We’ve since broken ours but I found this Alsatian wine at World Market.  I had to buy it for the bottle itself.  I haven’t popped the cork yet (or rather unscrewed it) but the bottle was worth the price.  

Last month I mentioned I had purchased spices from Penzey’s.   Here’s a recipe for the best sandwich in the world:   whole wheat or whole grain bread, a slather of cream cheese, avocado slices, slice of turkey, Penzey’s Sandwich Sprinkle and tomatoes.   It’s to die for.  No photo but I would highly recommend that Sandwich Sprinkle.  Seriously, that spice is something else! 

I ordered The Hubs Rodney Scott’s newest (and first) cookbook for Christmas.  I had to pre-order it as it wasn’t published until last month.  It came and I have used a lot of recipes from it with rave reviews.  (Notice I said “I” have used it…The Hubs wants to do a whole hog at some point so that’s his area.)  Look for a review of the book here soon.  

The results have been fantastic!

If you recall, I tried Blue Apron for a couple of years.   Then I recently switched to Hello Fresh.   Now I’m on to bigger and better food delivery:  LocalFarmOK.   Here’s what I got on our first delivery:

Inside the bag was a HUGE amount of lettuce and arugula and four avocadoes.  This past Friday, I received this outstanding delivery:

Lettuce, mint, kale, bok choy, sweet potatoes, red cabbage, broccoli, nectarines and peaches.

This company HAS to co-op with other farms across the nation.  Otherwise, there would be no way for me to get peaches, nectarines, avocadoes, and artichokes!   These bags (left on my doorstep every other Friday) are spurring me on to cook with more fresh ingredients.   So far, knock on wood, I have not wasted a single thing by letting it laze about in the fridge until it’s unrecognizable.

Finally, if you’re into foodie fiction, I invite you to read Honeysuckle Season by Mary Ellen Taylor.  I’m hosting the April/May edition for Cook the Books.  You can read the announcement post here.  

Thanks to Sherry for hosting IMK!   I’m off to see what’s up in everyone else’s kitchen!

OMG!   I almost forgot the BEST thing from our kitchen (or rather patio).  It’s an Ooni pizza oven.  You might remember from the February IMK post, that we had built a makeshift oven on our patio.  We were so impressed with that first version (and after The Hubs did a LOT of research), we decided to purchase an Ooni oven.   

We loved it so much that my sister and BiL ordered one, too.  They deemed that it resembled the shuttlecraft from one of the Star Trek franchises.   (That is, without the chimney.)

These are just a sampling of pizzas.  Generally, we make two every Saturday night.  Sometimes we use leftovers from the fridge.  We’ve created some great combos like Zaatar pizza with roasted chicken and feta; artichoke pizza with roasted red peppers and olives; Soppressata pizza with fresh moz; pulled pork pizza with goat cheese, dilled green tomatoes, red onions, and a drizzle of BBQ sauce; bacon and avocado pizza; and a cheeseburger pizza using a leftover grilled patty with pickles, onions, and cheddar.   There are other combinations too numerous to mention.

If you like wood fired pizza, I would highly recommend this little oven.   What we purchased was the Ooni Karu 12.  We use both hard wood charcoal and some chunks of pecan wood for our cooking purposes.


See you in May!



13 comments to April 2021 “In My Kitchen”

  • That Alsatian wine bottle is really special. I have never had a wood fire pizza…you have me crave some, Deb. Glad that you have been enjoying some nice spring weather. It’s snowing here 🙁 very unusual for April..

  • That pizza oven is outstanding. Neat addition to your patio. Love the shape of that wine bottle, too. Good stuff in your kitchen this month — thanks.

  • Mae

    As you may know, Steven Spurrier died last month. He was the wine merchant who set up the blind tasting comparing French and California wines that became known as “The Judgement of Paris.” According to his obit in the New York Times: “When all was done, a shocking consensus revealed the favorite wines to be a 1973 chardonnay from Chateau Montelena and a 1973 cabernet sauvignon from Stag’s Leap Cellars, both in Napa Valley.” So you totally have the right wines! Enjoy your tasting.

    best… mae at maefood.blogspot.com

    • I did not know that Spurrier had passed. I saw that Stag’s Leap Chardonnay and had to buy it (even thought they won with a cab). Have you seen Harvest Season? It has the real Gustavo in it. I really enjoyed it.

  • those pizzas look fabulous. i could happily have one for lunch right now:) Love that fishy bottle of wine. i wonder if we have them here? Thanks for joining in IMK, and putting up my logo.

  • I keep forgetting about Food n Flix, its been a long time since ive participated. These days though i am not as organised. But i will keep an eye on it, for when i am able to.That is one very cool fish bottles, it does remind me of 1970s vases i’ve seen in Antique shops. And even more cool is the pizza oven. i am envious of all the good vegetables and await going back to the vegetable market.

  • Liz

    I definitely have pizza oven envy and your pizzas are very inventive. Love the fish wine bottle for olive oil, I am going to keep my eyes out for one. I’ll be interested to read about your wine tasting. I’ve had both of them (not the 2 buck chuck) and they are delicious. Happy spring!

    • We missed a weekend cooking pizza. 🙁 I’m thinking leftover grilled steak….maybe making a fajita pizza! Still haven’t tried the wine yet.

  • Great stuff!! Love Penzey’s and that sandwich sounds wonderful. What an abundance of produce!!! Looks like you’re going to be eating a lot of sweet potatoes and there is nothing wrong with that.