Preserving the bounty of the season

Plums, peaches, nectarines and apricots piled high; tomatoes, plump and plush, sending their sweet perfume through the market stalls.

It’s late summer and at Essential Ingredient we embrace the sweet fruits of the season so much we also love to preserve and pickle them to have them available through the cooler months.

The act of preserving food goes back to ancient times, when the …

Francois Doucet confectionary

Surrounded by the beauty of the Provincial countryside, a family of fruit growers and artisan confectionary makers in the south of France combine their talents to produce a spectacular range of confectionary treats.

For the chocolate range, local fruits and nuts are enrobed in gianduja (a rich combination of chocolate and hazelnut paste) and praline, then finished in gorgeously coloured chocolate candy.

Beautifully packaged, …

Baldjis whole green Greek figs

Few foods evoke as much culture and history as figs.

Prominent in the bible, eponymous throughout the Greek empire and still a fixture across the landscape of contemporary Greece, the fig manages at once to represent the lushness of the Mediterranean throughout the ages and the modern charm of Greek cuisine.

The Essential Ingredient is proud to stock Baldjis …

The Essential Ingredient Jam Collection

Jam is, in many ways, a magical food. It is at once elegant and rustic, evoking both high tea in formal surrounds and Devonshire tea surrounded by a natural vista of gum trees and native flowers.

It is a breakfast staple, perfect simply spread across a piece of freshly toasted bread, but is equally at home in tarts or biscuits shared …

The autumn kitchen

Many of us have a complicated love/hate relationship with autumn. While we can be saddened by the end of summer and its long, warm evenings, barbeques and outdoor activities, the romantic associations with autumn are often irresistible.

Autumn, of course, sees the colour of the leaves changing before they fall from the trees and sees jumpers and jackets make …

Staying fresh in Summer

Summer is the most iconic of Australia’s seasons. Barbeques, picnics, beach outings, cricket; many of the most beloved aspects of Australian life are reserved for the warm Summer months.

Our plates and palates also come alive in Summer, with the season arguably supplying the most colourful and delicious selection of fresh produce of the year.

Cherries are celebrated and ubiquitous, while berries …

Recipe: Cherry Jam

Jams allow you to quite literally enjoy the fruits of your harvest many seasons after your favourite fruit has disappeared.

Whether from your own bulging fruit trees or an end-of-season bargain from the local market, almost any type and quantity fruit can be turned into a rich, sweet jam that is perfect on toast or pancakes, in cakes or cocktails, or …