Being in my 50s, I seem to have reached that stage in my life where I have everything I could want and need, and I rarely ever covet anything.
There's loads of storage in our home, and yet every cupboard (and every room, for that matter) is literally spilling over with stuff.
You may find this crazy my friends, but we have so much 'stuff' that Peter and I made an agreement last year that if we buy any new (or pre-loved) items - be it books, clothes, shoes, tools, kitchenware, whatever - we will get rid of at least one, if not two, similar old belongings. It's a form of ongoing decluttering, if you will, and it feels liberating, not to mention the fact that we are constantly donating goods to our local St Vincent de Paul (Vinnies) op shop.
I must admit, however, that there was one unique thing I saw a few months ago that made me think, 'Wow, I'd love one of those!' It was the rolling pin engraved with cats that 'did the rounds' on the inter webs after appearing on Etsy. It went viral, I believe. You probably saw it too.
So, you can imagine that I was more than pleasantly surprised when I received an email from a company in Poland, offering to make me a personalised, engraved rolling pin for free. Yes please, and thank you, I replied with a smile.
Based in Poland, In My Wood is an emerging producer of laser-engraved, beech wood rolling pins. The rolling pins are 25cm in length and 6cm in diameter, and are made from FSC Certified timber from a Polish wood company with a 70 year tradition.
Yippee! My rolling pins arrived during the week, beautifully wrapped and tucked inside protective cardboard cylinders. They are stunning! One was engraved with flowers and swirls and the words 'Good Things', the other looks quite Hungarian in its style and is adorned with roosters and flourishing flowers.
There are numerous styles to choose from, including bees, butterflies, cats, chihuahuas, cows, dachshunds, dogs, horses, farm animals, owls, Persian cats, poodles, schnauzers, love hearts, happy birthday message, Christmas, hibiscus, floral, Halloween, summer holidays, travel, baby shower, football, 'best mom', snowman and wedding. Wow.
I baked my gluten-free shortbread biscuits over the weekend, road testing the In My Wood rolling pins. As you can see from my photographs, it was a successful baking experiment and these rolling pins are keepers in my kitchen. ♥ ♥
My recipe for gluten-free shortbread biscuits appears below:
GLUTEN FREE SHORTBREAD BISCUITS
1 cup gluten-free self-raising flour*
1/2 cup gluten-free plain flour
1 teaspoon ground vanilla bean
2 level dessertspoons rice crumbs+
1/3 cup caster sugar
125g butter (room temperature)
1 small free-range egg
Combine the flours with the ground vanilla, caster sugar, rice crumbs and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer. Using a dough hook attachment, beat until the butter is incorporated and the mixture forms a stiff dough. Add the egg and beat until combined.
Work the dough into a ball, cover the bowl (or wrap the dough in cling film) and refrigerate for 20-30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 180 degrees C and line a baking tray with parchment.
Dust the bench lightly with flour. Divide the dough into two and, working quickly, form each into a ball. Flatten slightly, then roll into a circle around 6-8mm thick, using your engraved rolling pin. Cut out shapes with tin cutters and carefully lift the biscuits to the prepared baking tray. (You may need a palette knife or spatula for this, but if you are clever, you can cut and lift at the same time. The dough will remain within the cutter. Drop it onto the baking sheet). Dust lightly with extra flour if required as you continue to cut the rest of the biscuits (you may need to pull remaining dough together and roll it out again).
Bake the shortbreads for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow the biscuits to cool on a wire tray. Makes 20 or so. Store in an airtight container.
* I used 'Has No' gluten-free flour from Aldi.
+ Rice crumbs are available from supermarkets and health food stores.
Shop with In My Wood, use 'goodthings' code and receive 10% off
With Christmas just around the corner, the folks at In My Wood have kindly extended a discount to the readers of my little blog. Visit their website, choose your favourite rolling pins, and enter the code goodthings to receive a 10% discount.
Personalised rolling pins cost 29€, while others in the range are currently on sale for 23€ (plus P+H). The products are gift wrapped in cellophane and packed in a sturdy cardboard cylinder. They are shipped from Poland to Europe within five days, USA within 7 days, Australia within 8 days, and other parts of the world within 14 days. Now that's a good thing.
Incidentally, to ensure that the quality of your beech wood rolling pin is preserved, wash and brush it clean after each use, then allow the rolling pin to dry before rubbing in a thin layer of cooking oil.
Disclaimer: I was gifted two personalised rolling pins from In My Wood and my readers are entitled to a 10% discount. This is not a sponsored post.
Tell me dear readers, what things (if any) do you covet these days? And do you like these engraved rolling pins as much as I do?
Hi. I'm Liz. I'm a writer, cook and traveller based in Canberra, Australia.
I love the process of writing and the stringing together of words to form
a story borne from the wisp of an idea. I also greatly enjoy cooking
Join me as I share with you my favourite recipes, postcards and morsels from my adventures, conversations with cookery writers
and chefs, and news on food and cooking.
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NB: I use Australian standard measuring cups and spoons in my recipes.