In My Kitchen ~ April 2014

Olive Boat

In my kitchen is this lovely porcelain olive boat — a birthday gift from my Sis last month, xo. Its dainty size is perfect for an afternoon pick-me-up, and its delicate hand-painted motif has graced our dinner table frequently.

I love serving pieces with personality, don’t you? I also enjoy ‘plating’ food even if it’s just for a snack… and you know how I feel about olives. ;)

In my kitchen is — was — this chocolate cake.

BD Cake close up

It was everything I’d hoped for: chocolate-y, hazelnut-y, heavenly! But, silly me… I halved the cake recipe and made a full batch of the ganache! (Subliminal thinking?) The double-thick topping tasted like two-desserts-in-one with toasted hazelnut meal dusted around the edges. It was supposed to have fresh strawberries for a garnish, ahem… just another excuse to make it again. (Not that I need an excuse!)

In my kitchen is the first impromptu bouquet of the season.

Flowergram 1

What do you call small bouquets? Size-wise I think this one qualifies as a nosegay or a tussie-mussie. (Such delightful terms!) Grape hyacinths are sprouting all over the yard and our rosemary bush surprised me by bursting into bloom, too — couldn’t resist bringing a lil’ Spring indoors.

Pretty flowers (and pretty food) make me happy!

For fun glimpses of kitchens around the world or to add your own, please visit our lovely hostess Celia at Fig Jam and Lime Cordial. I look forward to it every month!

Enjoying spontaneity inside and out,

~ Kim

© 2011-2014 Kim Bultman and a little lunch

42 thoughts on “In My Kitchen ~ April 2014

  1. You had me at the chocolate cake. Glad I was late to the party here because now I have the recipe. Will definitely share that beauty on Chocolate for breakfast today. Yum!

  2. OMG – that cake. It looks incredible and I think that you will defo have to make it again with strawberries – to compare if nothing else! The little grape hyacinths are so pretty – love spring flowers of any sort as they herald so much promise for the months ahead! So nice to meet you via IMK :)

    • Nice to meet you, too, Selma, and apologies for my slow response to IMK this month. (We’ve had company.) I’m glad you liked the cake — I did! Strawberry season is almost here for Round Two. :) I also loved your thoughts on Spring and “the promise for the months ahead”… yes ma’am!

    • Catherine, if you click the WordPress button — the blue “W” — before you comment, it’ll log you in (wait for it…) and show your lovely face so you don’t have to “oops” comment afterwards. Patience, my friend… but tickled you’re eager to share your thoughts!

  3. I would have loved the double gnache! In fact, I probably would have put it in a bowl and eaten it with a spoon–LOL. Our flowers up north are later than yours, but I do have some tiny crocuses. Great to see some color again. And, the chopped nuts sprinkled on the edges of the cake made it look fancy and irresistible!

    • Catherine, sometimes I make a small batch of ganache for a spoonful of “chocolate fix” when the craving hits. ;) Glad to hear you’re finally getting Springtime up north! Thanks again for coming by to comment. xo

  4. I feel the same way about olives – love! When I was small, the neighborhood pizza parlor would bring out a little dish of olives for me whenever my family stopped by :)

    And your chocolate cake and bouquet are so pretty!

  5. I don’t particularly like chocolate cake, but your photo had me drooling! I like the idea of a special dish for olives – making an effort gives extra value to food. Someone, somewhere grew and harvested the olives, someone processed them and it seems only fair that we do our bit too. And then eat them.

    • Anne, I’m going to enjoy olives (all food actually) even more now! You’re right… there’s more than meets the eye (so to speak) — a chain of people, growth, harvest, preservation… I liked that very much. Thank you.

    • Fiona, I’m glad you mentioned pruning your rosemary bush. (I was wondering if I should trim mine or not… it’s getting pretty huge!) I’m also tickled you noticed the fork — it’s a favorite piece, given to me by my mother-in-law. Thank you!

  6. My Rosemary is blooming too early as well! What is it with the weather. I love your olive boats, it makes meals special when you serve them nicely.

    The cake . . . well, I’d better not comment. It looks too good.

    • Pat, we can only hope those early blooming bushes don’t mean summer’s going to show up May 1st! (Still, I’ll take warm over cold any day!) Smiling about your comment re: the cake. :) Thank you!

    • Celia, I just had one of those “now why didn’t I think of that?!” moments… LOVED your idea to serve chocolates in the olive boat! Thank you for that — and for your comments on the cake. :)

  7. That olive boat is such a beautiful piece & I like how you think – why not make a snack look pretty? I have an elderly friend who lives alone yet every night she sets a beautiful table with flowers and linens for her dinner. She lived most of her life in Poland and I think Europeans in general treat meals as more of a relaxing event rather than something to just get out of the way. BTW, although most restaurants & even the theater here in Boston have gone to “casual”, she still dresses in her finest when going out which I think is just lovely and wish more would do. Casual is great for some things, but I miss getting dressed up for things that are special.
    You’re ahead of us with springtime flowers but I just noticed today that my daffodils are poking through so I hope I’ll have some blooms soon.
    I take it you enjoyed the cake? :)

    • Diane, what a wonderful, WONDERFUL story! Your lovely lady friend sets an example we should all aspire to emulate, and you’re right… some folks value those experiences more than others (probably due to an extreme lack of them in their earlier years.) It puts a perspective on life that we should pay attention to closely. Every moment, every morsel are gifts to treasure, and they’re only as special as you make them. (Makes me want to dress up for dinner tonight!) Thanks so much.

      • I think you’re right about our experiences affecting how we look at life now. I so admire Barbara’s old world charm and manners. And yes, sometimes we’re in too much of a rush to appreciate the important, small things in life. As a cancer survivor I know that I do look at people with a more caring eye and wonder what stories they have because we all have them. Do dress tonight & don’t forget to use the expensive perfume…I used to save it but now – it makes me happy.

  8. I love pretty flowers & food too, Kimby! Of course, food presentation brings me joy too; it’s like decorating a x’mas tree. I’m always looking out for your lovely crockery!

    • Shirley, I hadn’t thought about food presentation in the context of decorating a Christmas tree — what a great idea — like Christmas every day! :) You’re an inspiration and a dear friend, xo.

    • Hi there, Joanne! Always a pleasure to see your smiling face and read your cheery comments! Glad you didn’t bump your head on the computer… you showed great self-restraint. ;)

  9. Wow Kim, that cake looks outstanding! Funnily, I’ve just baked a chocolate chestnut tart… it’s such a delicious combination. Love your little bunch of flowers too! Just delightful.

    • Uru, if I could sail on my lil’ olive boat to the far reaches of Australia someday to meet you, I would. (With chocolate cake for sustenance, of course!) You’re right… it didn’t last long. But then, I shared. :)

  10. I see so much of me in your kitchen~~that’s why we’re Bohemian souls and spirits~~the olives, the cake, the flowers, all gorgeously presented, and the photos, Kim, are crystal perfect! And, yes, pretty makes me happy, especially when it comes to flowers and food…now to just sit in that deck chair, prop up my feet, and sip some chardonnay w/you! xox

    • Ally, deck season is here at last after a long winter’s wait. Heading out there again shortly… wish you were here! Beauty is in the eye of the Boho-beholder ;) and we “be-holding” the potential playfulness in the palms of our hands — treasures that speak to our souls, to PARTAKE with pleasure! (Please pardon the alliteration…) Thanks, too, for your astute eye on photo clarity. I appreciated that greatly! xo

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