It’s been three long months since I last invited you for a virtual tour of our kitchen, the event initiated by Celia and now hosted by Lizzy from Bizzy Lizzy Good Things. So, tighten your seat belts, because there are lots of goodies to talk about…

Starting with gifts…

I am not sure this qualifies as a gift, but I will go with it. I entered a drawing over at Lisa is Cooking a couple of months ago, and to my absolute delight, I won!  It is a gorgeous, oval-shaped All-Clad pan, perfect to sear and cook fish.  It is so beautiful, I smile every time I look at it…  Not only it works great for its intended purpose, but I’ve used it to sear halloumi cheese. O.M.G. Wait for a blog post on that one…

panThank you so much, Lisa!  Love the pan….

From our dear friend Ines…


A classic cookbook from the one and only Dorie Greenspan… A must-have for sure, I know I would be getting it at some point. Resistance would be futile. But now I don’t need to. HA!

From our friends Denise and Hélio, shipped all the way from England…

The best chocolate in the world! Valrhona, in different levels of cocoa, to match your mood… or your recipe!  Such a thoughtful gift… The only problem is preventing “someone” from devouring one bar or two when I’m not paying attention.

From C & C, the coolest couple in L.A.


A set of soapstone vodka drinking glasses. Phil loves Chopin vodka, and they also sent a huge bottle. The glasses are from a company I like a lot, Uncommon Goods. Check them out, they have very unique things.

From my sister Norma, back in Brazil….


A gourmet mustard, infused with a very special Brazilian fruit, called “jabuticaba.”  I love the fruit, and the mustard is superb!  It has a delicate touch of sweetness, and the taste is quite unique.


From my niece Raquel back in Brazil…


A beautifully crafted box for my teas!  The top mimics the pattern of the sidewalks in Rio de Janeiro, every Brazilian recognizes that pattern… Looks like waves…  And now my teas are in perfect order!

From my perfect match…

Two more coffee mugs from our favorite pottery artist, Mary Rose Young…  He keeps searching on ebay, and I keep welcoming them in our kitchen…

My Christmas gift to myself… just because….

This little teapot has a thermometer on the lid, and you can brew each type of tea (green, herbal, black) at the optimal temperature. It is very stylish, and works like a charm…. I am in love!



In our kitchen…


A few exotic ingredients I got over at the Oriental market we have in town. For the most part inspired by a couple of cookbooks I am in love with: The Saffron Tales and Taste of Persia. I got black chickpeas, culinary grade rose petals (swoon), pomegranate seeds powder (how could I resist?) and a couple of spices that are very important in Middle Eastern cuisine: angelica powder and advieh (Persian spice mix). Can hardly wait to play with them all…

In our kitchen…

‘ve heard a lot of good things about this store called “The Spice Lab.” But their stuff is very expensive. The other day I stopped at Tuesday Morning in town, and was surprised to find this big bottle of Himalayan salt for sale, very cheap. It has black pepper in it. Sprinkled on top of flank steak cooked medium-rare it is to die for.

In our kitchen…


These are some tasty crackers! Served with home-made hummus it is a garbanzo bean feast for your taste buds… Love it. I think they have several kinds, I’ve seen it plain and this one with black olives. Salty, quite addictive. If you have a chance to grab a bag, go for it.

In our kitchen…


A new (to me) grain that I bought after my friend Elaine raved about it. Still waiting to try my first recipe for it, I am sure it’s something I’ll love. You can use it as you would farro, for instance, in stews, as a risotto type prep, or even cold in salads. Stay tuned.

In our kitchen…


Holiday napkins… How could I resist these? Look at that doggie! Poise and elegance, just like our pups… Well, maybe not quite…

In our kitchen…


A red platter found at Marshalls. It was love at first sight. They had it with a reduced price tag, I paid 5 bucks for it, if you can believe it. It is so festive, perfect for the holiday season, but I will be of course using it all year-long.

In our kitchen…

Butterscotch extract. Yes, you read it correctly. This heaven in a bottle exists. One word for you, macarons. Are you smiling yet?

In our kitchen…


Four perfectly round low-carb Ricotta, Lemon & Lavender pancakes, a recipe I was very excited to try on a Saturday after a nice, albeit a bit chilly morning run. Oh, you only see an empty plate? What’s up with that, you may ask?

Full disclosure: Said pancakes were left unattended for 3 and a half minutes while I went upstairs to grab my phone to take a picture of them. I should add they were in the center of the island, a spot that we considered safe from canine paws. We were proven wrong. A certain dalmatian that attends by the name of Bogey Quit That managed to push the plate with his nose (at least that’s what we think), all the way to the edge of the countertop, to very efficiently wolf them down.  And then you wonder why my hair gets a bit more gray each month (sigh).

Finally, very recently in our kitchen…


Great friends reunited, even if only for a few hours…


Due to a lengthy series of canine-induced grievances, I seriously considered banning the four-legged creatures from showing up in this segment of In My Kitchen. But then…

oskypeter11Sir, you seem like such a nice man…
Could you please convince Mom to let us say hello to her readers? 

Reluctantly, then… I complied.


I have nothing to add. Still hurts me to remember.

Oscar cannot reach countertops and to be honest, he doesn’t care that much about food, which is pretty odd. But he causes grievances in other ways… like trying to dig his way to China from our backyard, forcing his humans to halt dinner preparation and deal with the muddy mess.



Now, THAT’S what I’m talking about!

Buck managed to hurt his front paw helping his brother in his path to China, so we put some booties on his paws to prevent him from licking the antibiotic ointment off. He was not thrilled.


His first attempts at walking with those booties were hilarious, poor thing, but he got used to them in a few minutes. Check it out here.

Giving Bogey a bath is a workout in itself, because to dry him, you gotta catch him first. Sounds a lot easier than it is… Glad I was not the one in charge!
bogeybathHe does look great once he is squeaky clean!

Oscar insists that he cleans up better than his brother.


But Buck is putting up a fight for the pole position…

I will let you be the judge of it, not taking sides!

Bogey has been bad lately. Really bad. From eating a bar of soap, to snatching my special pancakes, but the worst, the worst I shall tell you later. Never in a million years, we could imagine… well, I’ll stop here. You will have to wait for it.



Now, if you want to see three dogs on their very best behavior, all it takes is a sirloin steak, cooked medium rare, and Phil going at it with a knife.


That’s all, folks!  We all wish you a wonderful 2017!

We promise to be back with more cooking, more bread baking, more canine grievances, and throw in some cake baking to keep the adrenaline high…


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ONE YEAR AGO: In My Kitchen: Happy New Year!

TWO YEARS AGO: And another year starts…

THREE YEARS AGO: In My Kitchen: January 2014

FOUR YEARS AGO: Tacos with Pork in Green Sauce

FIVE YEARS AGO:  Maui New Year!

SIX YEARS AGO: Natural Beauty

SEVEN YEARS AGO: Sunflower Seed Rye


  1. OMG the dogs are SO cute! Even dirty Oscar. The booties made my day. Have you seen @dog_rates on Twitter?

    When you said you went to Tuesday Morning – I miss that place. When it arrived in Knoxville for its few weeks, I was there 2-3 times before it shut. It it open all the time now? We don’t have a Marshalls either. 😦

    That mustard sounds yummy even though I don’t know what a jabuticaba is.

    Happy New Year, Sally and Phil and all the kids.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I included a little link showing the jabuticaba – it is the stuff of Nirvana… I used to eat SO MUCH of the fruit growing up, it is very unique. I don’t know any Brazilian who doesn’t love it… fun to eat too, you bite into the hard skin, and the sweet pulp oozes out in your mouth, then you spit the skin out, with all the dignity and poise and grace you can master…


    • Maureen – jaboticaba plants are available at all the ‘tropical nurseries’ in N NSW and S Qld – beautiful fruit: perhaps someone could put it in a big pot for you? Mine fruited in a few years . . . .


  2. nossa quanta coisa deliciosa. Fiquei especialmente curiosa a respeito da mostarda com jabuticaba. Aguardo detalhes das maravilhas que sairao dessa combinacao inusitada. beijos!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi. I have been reading your blog for awhile now. It so fun to read and I love your 3 doggies. They are so cute. Your new year’s blog was awesome and then I find myself trolling Amazon on all the products and your new kitchen items. Too much temptation to resist…Lol! Anyway, I am looking forward to what the “really bad thing” was your doggies did! Have and wishing you a happy new year. Daphne from NH.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Daphne, the “really bad thing” was exactly it. Very really bad thing. Bogey has been described as the fastest mouth in the west… for good reason. Stay tuned, and HAPPY NEW YEAR!

      thanks for leaving me a comment, love it!


  4. I have that same salt from Tuesday Morning ! If you have a TJ Max in your area their food section is pretty cheap too with gourmet products 😃 Happiest of New Year to you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • We don’t have a T J Max here in Manhattan, I think there is one in Topeka, the capital, which is one hour drive from here, maybe a little less. Would be fun to stop by sometime…


  5. This post made me so happy Sally! What a charming bunch, and a charmed life. Well done! Wouldn’t it be great if you came to L.A. again this year? And that we could actually meet up in person this time? I dream of it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • THat would be wonderful! We should be there at some point, not sure yet when…. but as soon as something is “in the planning” I will let you know… and Karen, and Lauren… 😉


  6. Sally – you managed again, didn’t you! There I was admiring your beautiful presents, looking at the interesting purchases and then the boys came on . . . now who could possibly remember the first 2/3 of the post after that! So glad the mischief-maker Bogey has fitted in so well and that you caught the priceless final one of true food appreciation 🙂 ! That said, would not mind those soapstone vodka glasses a’tall!!!! Hope the five of you have a fabulous 2017!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I always love a visit to your kitchen and especially love those dogs. How could you even think of leaving them out! I’ve had my new little rescue dog for 6 months now and he hasn’t done anything TOO bad yet. Chewed the strap off one of my sandals but they were only old garden ones and he did bring it back to show me!

    Liked by 1 person

    • We definitely never had a dog so intent on finding food like Bogey… our late dalmatian could be pretty sneaky and stole a couple of precious items, but nothing like Bogey. Not even close. We need to keep constant attention, or there goes our dinner-lunch-breakfast-brunch-snack… 😉


    • I love that picture too.. they would not blink. I got several in a row, all pretty similar, they completely ignored me… I am nothing compared to a medium rare piece of meat (sigh)


  8. Happy New Year Sally! (my first blog hello of 2017 and it had to be Bewitching Kitchen ❤ ) I don't know where to possibly start with all these goodies… you poor deprived soul 😉 the handcrafted tea box from your niece is exquisite and those soapstone glasses a rare find (don't mind if I use them for water do you?) – the pups are a going concern I see, they're so freakin' cute (Oscar is killing me in his red kerchief). Looking forward to hearing about Bogey's further shenanigans and I hope Buck's paws heal soon (no self-respecting pup likes booties ;o). Smooch! X

    Liked by 1 person

    • I use the vodka glasses for shrub – it’s kind of fun, acting with a shrub like a shot of tequila 😉 They are gorgeous, aren’t they?

      Buck healed completely – just a couple of days with the booties was all it took. I was a bit worried because in between his toes it was quite inflamed, but that dog is so resilient… He is totally fine now.

      Happy New Year!!!!


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