Store Cupboard Stuff

(Suzie Blackman) #1

Following on from Helen - Aside from Flour, Sugar, Eggs, Cheese - what would be the three things you couldn’t do without or find the most useful to have in your store cupboard/freezer and what do you use them for?

Here's mine to make a start:

1. Tinned Mushrooms - Useful for sauces, bulking out meat dishes when 4 suddenly become 6!

2. Frozen Spinach - Baked Eggs Florentine, add to curries or Sag Aloo, quenelles of... Ravioli Filling.

3. Chocolate 70% - there's always a dessert in a bar of choc!

(Suzie Blackman) #2

Ozzies have gone now and friend now has kitchen back - very beautiful with all singing and dancing ovens and hobs.
Still haven’t got round to the 20€ challenge on Helen’s Ready Steady Cook idea yet.
Wednesday in the rain had a lunch with a load of french artists in St Emilion. We ate outside (undercover but outside - freezing) The man sitting next to me was vegetarian (hmm a French one), anyway in this bring and share lunch he had brought a delicious Parmesan Quiche - absolutely yummy.
When me Ozzie chums were here I made a lardons and asparagus quiche/tart - we only have a small patch of Asparagus but it seems to produce tons. Anyone else got good ideas for quiche/tart receipes?

(Jamie Schler) #3

Oh and yes they are a load of rotters! Thank you! The times I have asked they act as if I am joking!

(Jamie Schler) #4

Ha Ha actually I think we eat Harry’s American Bread and it is pretty close to some of the packaged bread we can buy in the states. But it isn’t that bad for sandwiches and actually makes perfect grilled cheese sandwiches for my sons! But I’m not a big bread eater outside a chunk of boulangerie bread at mealtime.

(Suzie Blackman) #5

Well they’re a load of rotters!
One thing please, please tell me that the dreadful sliced bread they sell out here that goes by the name of Harry’s American Bread is nothing like American Bread. My husband said that you have an amazing selection of breads in the States and none of it is like the Harry’s stuff. As one of the biggest wheat producers in the world I should imagine that’s something you miss too.

(Jamie Schler) #6

And no one back home thinks it that important to ever mail me a box :frowning:

(Suzie Blackman) #7

Gosh it must be even harder for you to get a taste of home.

(Suzie Blackman) #8

I think we all agree that tinned toms are a must.

At the moment cooking for friends (youngsters from Oz doing the Europe thing) and displaced neighbour and son-in-law who is having a new kitchen fitted and us, so 7 altogether. Absolutely hopeless at planning puddings (not without a lot of concentration anyway) so it has been storecupboard comfort food - Golden Syrup Sponge & custard and pancakes and ice-cream - think Eggs are another one for the “must have in” list.

(Jamie Schler) #9

This question is pretty impossible for someone with a food blog (me)! But if I must and taking my men into consideration:

Canned (I am American LOL!) tomatoes
Dried pasta & rice (counts as 1 in my book!)
Yes, I’ll go with those bricks of cream

I don’t count things like olive oil, vinegar, salt & pepper, spices, etc as things to always have on hand because each of those is basically part and parcel of the countertop :slight_smile:

And are there any Americans here? We must crave different things and sadly have a lot further to travel to bring them back with us. Whenever I go home I fill my suitcase with things from the grocery store: spice mixes and seasoned salts, cookies for the boys, candy from my childhood for me, flavored rice packets, flavored mustards, bbq sauce, things like that. Yum! Now I am hungry!

(Chrissie Ott) #10

Oooh. Can I play? I love all things food… especially the eating thereof! (Which is why I’m now on a diet!) :frowning:

I don’t use flour or sugar at all so can I have 3 + 2 ? I’ll give it a go anyhow…

  1. Olive oil, used every day even if it’s only rubbing a bit in my hands!
  2. Mini cartons of red and white wine, for when a recipe just wants a slosh and you don’t want to open a bottle especially. (Did I really write that?!)
  3. Shallots, essential for making my lovely neighbour’s perfect vinaigrette.
  4. ‘Lazy’ chilli pulp, because fresh red chillis are sooo hard to find here
  5. Ready made, very good quality, mayo… because home-made has defeated me once too often!

(Dave Bassett) #11

The only good steak I can get is from the local farmer, I can even watch them grow up in the fields around the village. If you have a farm near you I highly reccomend giving it a go…

(Suzie Blackman) #12

I think for us English, we are used to beef being hung for 21 days (tender and tastier) but in France they only hang for about 15 days I believe. I have tried buying the steak a few extra days before cooking but they can still be tough. And, of course, the steaks here are never meant to be cook for more than a nanosecond. That’s why the French look horrified if someone asks for well done - it’s not so much your preference for well cooked meat more that they know the steak will turn out like shoe leather so why would anyone want that.
Think its just down the a different style of butchery. ho hum

(John Slate) #13

Frozen Chicken Breasts
Tinned Tomatoes
Any pasta

Sorry, I also need a fourth! Dried Herbs - on the assumption I don’t have any fresh ones in the garden

(John Slate) #14

Surely, there must be good steaks in France but, I agree, we haven’t found them yet after six years of trying. Every time we have a meal out with our English friends Ian insists on having a steak. When I suggest he tries something else for a change he sticks to steak. Like he says, there must be a good one around somewhere and he wants to be the first to find it.

(Stuart Wilson) #15

My wife prefers the veggie stuff. We only use it for mince and dumplings.

(Suzie Blackman) #16

Glacé cherries are about but I can’t find what we would call mixed peel. And Lays (I think) do crinkle salt and vinegar crisps.

(Suzie Blackman) #17

You can get it but it’s really expensive out here.

(Sarah Hague) #18

I used to import Branston pickle but I can get that here now. I used to import mincemeat but I recently saw it in Mondial Market in Montpellier.

Just about everything I used to import except salt ‘n’ vinegar flavour crisps I can get here now. I can even get custard powder. :slight_smile: Come to think of it, I’m not sure I’ve seen glacé cherries anywhere.

Makes coming back from the UK much easier on the suitcase.

(Stuart Wilson) #19


(Suzie Blackman) #20

I bought Mark his pasta machine for Christmas a couple of years ago. The first few tries were a bit time consuming and getting the dough not too sticky, not too dry was a learning curve but I must say he’s quite happy now to turn out all sorts after working all day. He’s got it down to throwing the ingredients into the processor by eye and zip it’s all done!