In My Kitchen, May 2013

I know, it’s the last day of May, but I was going to burst if I didn’t manage to post a few photos from the kitchen over the past month. I’ve missed doing these posts, but luckily I’ve been able to stop in at a lot of great kitchens regardless. Check out Fig Jam and Lime Cordial for links to the amazing and diverse In My Kitchen posts.
So, without further ado in my kitchen this month there are:

Artichokes! The large one to the left is a regular globe artichoke, but the three small ones are all from my purple artichoke plants. Violetta di Chioggia, to be precise, from seeds that I ordered from Chiltern seeds. Isn’t it interesting how different they all look? I’m happy to report that they were uniformly tasty.
In my kitchen, there are

Broad beans! And as you can see, they double quite nicely as toys to be sorted in a tart pan. These are the last of them – I’m sure you’ve noticed that they are quite large. The inner beans are already starchy but this makes them perfect for fava, a venerable member of the pantheon of meze, or starters enjoyed around these parts.
The problem with broad beans is getting the beans out of their skins. It’s super tedious and it’s worse when the beans are not young and pert. Perhaps for this reason, fava is often made with dried beans.
Anyway, the procedure is the same once you’ve got your hands on the skinned beans, fresh or dry (although the dry ones benefit from a pre-soak). Cook the beans with water, a quartered onion, and olive oil. The beans should be cooked and a little wet in the end, but you can always add more water. Then blend it all to make a thick slurry, salt to taste, add snips of dill if you’ve got it, and lemon juice. This is absolutely perfect on toast. So if there are any of you out there who waited a little too long to harvest the last if the broad beans, this is something you can do with them. (Alas, no photos!)
I’ve saved the best for last. In my kitchen there are:

Flowers! This is not that significant in and of itself. I mean, flowers are nice but the real reason that this means something is that the only time we ever have cut flowers on the house is when my mom is in town. Yes, she made it! After waiting for two months, her visa came through and she hopped in the next available flight. She wasted no time in patrolling the garden, snipping flowers. In other words, she has fallen right into her routines here and it feels almost as if she never left in the first place.
Whew – made it! Now to post June’s IMK before the very end of the month…

16 thoughts on “In My Kitchen, May 2013

  1. Wonderful news that your Mom made it! You all must be thrilled!
    Fantastic photo of the artichokes! I know there are several varieties but none but one are available here. I know. How we suffer on this side of the Atlantic! 🙂 Thanks for the glimpse into your kitchen. By the way, love your new header photo, too.

  2. I love that your mother feels free to snip in your garden and fill your house with flowers! So glad she is there with you now!
    And those artichokes are amazingly beautiful
    But my favorite picture is of the broad beans being sorted by your adorable daughter.
    I love that your kitchen is filled with your family!

  3. What beautiful bounty from your garden, Siobhan! I love the artichokes – haven’t they grown magnificently! And thank you for the advice re fava – I cook the beans but leave them whole – I think blending it would be give a nicer texture. Do you ever grate a boiled egg over it? I’ve seen that done at a Moroccan restaurant…

    1. A boiled egg sounds like just the thing – I will have to try that next time. Funny how an egg can round out or completely change a dish – I love leftovers with an egg on top, or an egg over rice is always nice.

  4. andreamynard

    Wonderful artichokes and great to have a peek in your kitchen thanks to Celia. I have flowers in my kitchen too thanks to my Mum and daughter. The ones from the garden are nowhere near as gorgeous as yours though – in fact just realised they are mainly weeds and gone to seed veggies!

    1. Actually, I’ve noticed that my mom cuts veg flowers and weeds for her arrangements too. It’s made me appreciate how pretty they are! Thanks for stopping by – it’s always nice to have guests in the kitchen.

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