A Food & Travel Blog

In My Kitchen – November 2016

04/11/2016 | By

It’s time for another look at what I’m loving In My Kitchen. This month I’m loving South Australian wine, travel goodies and cookbooks!

In My Kitchen, Henschke

In my kitchen this month are some reminders of a fabulous dinner I attended just over a week ago.  South Australia’s Henschke wines launched their  2016 Aromatic Whites, and the Cyril Henschke Cabernet Sauvignon 2012, with a travelling roadshow in October – a hectic five cities in five nights, concluding with the dinner at Adelaide’s Concubine restaurant.

During the course of the evening Adelaide guests were treated to 13 of their fantastic wines, including an exclusive vertical tasting of their flagship, single vineyard Cyril Henschke from 1991, 1997, 2002 and the new release, 2012. This was not an opportunity offered at any of the other dinners and was an exciting event to be part of.

Henschke waromatic whites in my kitchen

Each of their wines are outstanding in their class and picking favourites is not easy although, out of the three new aromatic whites – the Julius Riesling 2016, Green’s Hill Riesling 2016 and Joseph Hill Gewürztraminer 2016 – I really couldn’t go past the splendid Julius. However, if you would like a closer look at each of the wines I suggest heading over to the Willunga Wino’s blog post, for her detailed tasting notes.

The Henschke family is one of Australia’s First Families of Wine (a collective of twelve multi-generational family-owned wine producers). On the night, the entire family, representing six (and a half!) generations, were present to showcase yet another splendid vintage. Aside from being among the nicest people one could ever hope to meet, Stephen and Prue Henschke are exceptional figures in Australian wine, leading the way with outstanding wines produced from sustainable vineyards.

pistachios & hazelnuts in my kitchen

Also in my kitchen are some reminders of my recent travels in Italy. We spent three weeks in my favourite country (outside of Australia) and managed to arrive home before it started rocking again. Whew.

I came home laden down ( well, actually, The Bloke carried them) with a couple of kilos of the world’s best nuts – hazelnuts from Piedmont and pistachios from Sicily. It can be difficult to bring food into Australia and AQIS are justifiably stringent in protecting our shores from introduced pests and diseases. I always declare any food products I bring in and generally find that, so long as food products are processed in some way and vacuum sealed, they are allowed in.

in my kitchen, saffron

I also bought home quite a bit of the most costly spice in the world – saffron. I bought a little organic saffron from Spain while at the Slow Food Terra Madre Salone del Gusto and then found the mother-lode at a little shop in old Dubai, on the way home. The latter was Persian saffron and unbelievably cheap (in our terms). I never buy saffron in markets, as it’s almost always fake, but this was the real deal and my only regret was that I didn’t by more.

in my kitchen cookbooks

I came home from our trip to find a delicious haul of cookbooks from Murdoch Books in my kitchen. My favourite is the very wonderful Australian Fish & Seafood Cookbook, which I wrote about last week. However, the others are equally worth sharing the love.
Sweet Celebrations is the first book from Australian YouTube My Cupcake Addiction sensation Elise Strachan. One for the serious entertainer, each chapter begins with a beautiful themed large cake, followed up by smaller cakes, drinks and fun, creative styling ideas, with all of Elise’s favourite basic recipes, techniques and tips in the back of the book. If you want to make your parties stand out, then this is the book for you.
Celebrity chef Manu Feildel’s More Please is a collection of his favourite meals, the ones he most often enjoys at home with his family and friends. His family has diverse cultural roots – French, Chinese, Malay and Sri Lankan. He and his partner, Clarissa, draw on all of these, plus influences from Spanish, Italian and Middle Eastern favourites when cooking at home.
TV cooking show presenter, caterer and home cook Anna Gare shares a collection of her favourite, most relied upon recipes in Delicious Every Day. This handy cookbook is full of accessible, drama-free meals – including a whole chapter of one-pot wonders and two dessert chapters – most of which are also gluten-free. It’s full of delicious dishes that everyone will want to enjoy.

That’s about it for what’s in my kitchen this month. My friend Liz over at Bizzy Lizzy’s Good Things hosts this monthly roundup. Do head over there to see what everyone else is loving in their kitchens this month.

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  1. Liz (Good Things)

    Hello Amanda, wow, what a gorgeous haul! That saffron… I bet it’s exquisite! And the hazelnuts and pistachios. Nice one. What a treat to be attend to attend those wine tasting events. Happy November and thank you for the very kind shout out xx

  2. Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella

    A nice haul this month Amanda. I’m off to Italy and will definitely be buying up food supplies 😀

  3. Francesca

    That little saffron tin is a beauty. Nice to pick it up cheaply too. I have heard that the Australian fish and seafood cookbook is a beauty and must track it down. Thanks for the tip about overseas foods and customs. I usually don’t buy stuff to bring in but will in future, if vacuum sealed. I have a friend in Padua who grows superb arborio but never brings into Australia with him. Now he will know what to do and how to seal it.

  4. Amanda

    Thanks for your comment Francesca – I can’t promise that this works every time, but it has worked for me when I have wanted to bring food products in. Just remember to declare whatever you bring in – that is most important.

  5. Kyrstie @ A Fresh Legacy

    What a wonderful haul. Thanks for the tip on bring food back into Australia. I have never been game, but I would risk it for the lovely items you collected. I’m off to read about your Italy trip. I am busting to return and explore more of it.

  6. Marcellina

    What a gorgeous tin of saffron! And all those nuts! Yum!

  7. Kim | a little lunch

    Amanda, I’m glad you made it home safely with your stash intact. We’ve had a couple of earthquakes here lately, though not as devastating. The wine tasting sounded exquisite and I love those chopsticks, too!

  8. Moya

    Amanda love the cute tin of saffron and looks like you had five nights of fun with some great wines 🙂

  9. Liz

    You’ve had an October full of variety, Italy and Dubai and Spain and wine tasting. What fun, and what a haul! It is so sad that the we get so few Australian wines here in the US. I will keep an eye out for that producer.

  10. Sandra

    I’ve been a Henschke fan for more years than i care to remember. Bought my first bottle of Hill of Grace for $3.50 in 1975!

  11. Celia

    Sooo…I bought the Fish book on your advice, and it’s fantastic! And what a treat to be able to taste those old Henschkes! I tried an old Hill of Grace recently, and it was sublime. 🙂

  12. sherry M

    oh that tin of saffron looks so pretty. a friend who is from Iran brought me some back a while ago. I still haven’t used it but i really must soon. i am always a bit scared about bringing things back into australia. great that they let you bring foodstuffs in. love the look of all those books. i think the anna gare one sounds interesting and also the seafood one. i must hunt it up!

  13. Gretchen

    How fantastic you were able to get your food finds home. Hazelnuts and pistachios are two of my favorite nuts! The saffron is a superb find, congrats. Your new cookbooks look wonderful, happy reading, cooking and baking.

  14. Miss Food Fairy

    WOW Amanda, I have to say I stopped dead in my tracks with your amazing saffron haul! I have never seen so much saffron in one place! I love the tin the Spanish saffron comes in, it’s just beautiful. Good tips for declaring all food stuffs entering Australia – I’ll keep that in mind for future reference. See you next month for IMK xx

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