Posted by the deTerra diarist

Wotcha, culinary crew, how’s it diddlin’?

You might have twigged that the deTerra diary has started to feature yummy recipes of late, such as our tasty tapas treats and nifty New York cheesecake. We do love cooking up to storm to create the scrummiest delights for fans of our wicked wooden kitchens, and this week we thought we’d pay tribute to a culinary classic: the perfect steak.

One of the greatest indulgences for meat connoisseurs, the perfect way to cook this beefy treat has eluded aspiring chefs for centuries. Cabineto and I have hunted high and we’ve hunted low, sampling mouth-watering steaks all over the nation on a quest to lay this culinary mystery to rest once and for all. With our top three drool-inducing recipes that cater for all tastes, we truly think we’ve got it pegged this time. So, without further ado we bring to you…… The Perfect Steak:

The BBQ Steak

With the sun just beginning to creep out, the thoughts of many may be turning to summer barbeques. For this reason, we feel the ultimate barbeque steak guide should be the first on our list.

  1. Steak: For barbequing, we always say that bigger is better. That’s why we recommend a 2kg ribeye, which stays juicy on the inside, helping you unleash your inner caveman. Ribeye steaks are a rising star of the steak world, and are relatively high in fat, giving them plenty of flavour.
  2. Easy on the charcoal, deTerra-inos! Piling coals too high can cause your steak to blacken, ruining it – and what a waste that would be.
  3. Brush your steak with olive oil on both sides and add to the barbeque. Don’t forget to keep turning it – barbeques are colder wherever the food is, so it’s important to keep it moving. If you can’t hear your steak sizzling, you know it’s not hot enough!
  4. Sear your steak for five minutes, then move to the edge of the grill where the temperature is slightly lower, and leave it to take on the delicious smoky barbeque flavour: three minutes for rare, five minutes for medium/rare, eight minutes for medium and longer if you like your steak well done.
  5. For the ultimate barbeque steak, we of course recommend barbeque sauce as the ideal complement. However, for an alternative summery dressing, why not try a mixture of oregano, lemon juice, crushed garlic and seasoning instead?

The Healthy Steak

These days, everyone is far more health-conscious than they used to be and, and whilst we think a little bit of what you fancy does you good, moderation really is key, as they say! Generally, beef has a higher fat content than many other meats, so here’s the recipe we’ve perfected for a steak that’s delicious and nutritious.

  • The Steak: In this category, we would suggest a lean, sirloin tip steak, measuring 0.5-1 inch thick. This means minimal gristle and maximum flavour, and should not be confused with top sirloin. If your cut has any visible fat, this can be removed after cooking so that plenty of flavour can be infused first.
  • To drain off surplus fat, cook this steak on a low-fat grill!
  • Preheat the grill for at least five minutes, to ensure it is at the optimum temperature to cook your perfect steak. While the grill is warming up, pound the steak with a steak hammer to half an inch thickness, then cut six small slices in each side and fill with pieces of chopped garlic. Brush with olive oil on both sides and season with pepper before adding to the grill. Salt can dry out the meat during the cooking process, so we recommend adding this condiment afterwards!
  • Grill for 3-5 minutes for medium-rare meatiness! If you prefer a longer cooking time, cook for 6-8 minutes for a medium steak, and a little longer for well done. For optimum flavour, we would advise a medium steak that isn’t over-done.
  • Leave your steak to rest for five minutes before serving with a fresh salad of rocket and cherry tomatoes, and a drizzle of lemon juice for added zing!
  • An indulgent steak is a delectable culinary treat once in a while.

    The Downright Indulgent Steak

    Every once in a while, it’s nice to go all out – we believe it’s good for the soul! With this in mind, we bring you our recipe for a wonderfully lavish steak, perfect for the end of a long hard week. You’ve earned it!

    1. The Steak: One of the most revered cuts, fillet steak is fabulously tender and quick to cook (after a hectic week, who wants to wait around, hey?). Usually the most expensive cut of beef available, it’s important to cook with care so as to compromise none of the delicious flavour of this meaty treat.
    2. Brush your fillet steak with sunflower oil or vegetable oil on both sides – this meat is going to be cooked quickly on a very high heat, and olive oil burns at too low a temperature.
    3. Put a small, dry frying pan over the largest ring on your hob and leave for at least a couple of minutes to heat up. We should hint – faithful deTerra friends – that things are about to get a tad smoky and it’s best to open a few windows!
    4. Now your pan is nice and toasty, gently place your fillet steak onto it. Move every thirty seconds to ensure it doesn’t stick to the pan. For a flavoursome medium-rare steak, we tend to suggest cooking for 2-3 minutes on each side. Certainly cook no longer than five minutes, when your steak will start to become dry and bland (and that would not be ideal at all!).
    5. Leave your steak to stand for the same length of time as your cooked it before serving. As this is an indulgent Friday night, chips and salad will be the perfect complement to your sumptuous steak. We recommend a peppercorn sauce or red wine sauce atop this particular cut of beef, for the ultimate ‘taste explosion’.

    The final secrets for serving up a succulent steak are to always cook from room temperature, and to ensure you use high quality beef. Cheaper cuts are far more likely to be tough and contain a lot of gristle. If you are on a budget, however, we suggest marinating your steak in lemon juice for at least half an hour before cooking, as the acid helps to tenderize the meat (just a couple of the tricks of the trade we picked up on our voyages!).

    Well folks, that’s all from us for today. If you have any pictures of mouth-watering steaks you’ve cooked using any of the recipes in the latest instalment of our digestible diary, we’d love to see some photos on Facebook or Twitter!

    Ta ta for now,

    The deTerra Diarist

     

    Posted by the deTerra diarist

    What’s up, foody fellows!

    Have you heard the latest on our spiffing new wicker baskets? These babies are just the ticket for traditional oak kitchens, and make an excellent alternative to wooden drawers and shelves. Lovingly hand-made from European white willow, these wicked wicker baskets provide tonnes of storage space for all your totally delish fresh fruit and vegetables, useful kitchen utensils, or anything else that takes your fancy!

    Our woven wicker baskets are perfectly nestled within smooth solid oak surrounds, which match our solid oak cabinets (how convenient!). What’s more, dear kitchen crew, these wonderful wicker baskets are of the very highest quality, and come in sizes to suit either our 500mm or 600mm wide kitchen cabinets. The baskets are provided in packs of two, and are supplied with the screws and runners required for quick and easy installation – it’s a piece of cake – we promise!

    A dashingly decorative and perfectly practical storage solution, these wicker baskets will cater for all your kitchen requirements. We think they’re incredibly charming in true country kitchens, or alternatively make a superb space-saver in utility rooms. Whatever style of home you inhabit, there’s no need to compromise on beauty or practicality when it comes to furnishing oak kitchens – especially with our brand new wicked wicker baskets!

    Well, this basket-case has gotta bounce – peace out!

    The deTerra Diarist

     

    Posted by the deTerra diarist

    Big news, deTerra dudes and dudettes!

    I’ve been hopping from left to right all morning, and I just can’t sit still. That’s because I’m super excited to remind you all that today is officially… Earth Day 2016! We are crazy about all things environmentally-friendly and organic here at deTerra, from fabulous environment-saving incentives the world over to our green credentials and stunning natural kitchens.

    ‘What is Earth Day?’ I hear you ask. Well, dear deTerrarinos, allow me to explain. Earth Day first took place in America in 1970, and many consider it to have been the pivotal moment in sparking our modern-day pro-environment attitudes. Soon after the inaugural Earth Day, many trailblazing new environmental laws were put in place. The movement has grown considerably since, and was globally recognised by the 90s.

    Did you know, more than 1 billion people now take part in Earth Day events every year, making it the most widely-followed initiative in the whole world?

    The Earth Day Network hopes to have planted 7.8 billion trees by the year 2020, which marks its 50th anniversary. This year, the event’s theme is ‘Trees for the Earth’, and today the network of nature nurturers are getting to their feet to conquer climate change, help the planet abandon fossil fuels as an energy source, and take another step towards their vision of a world powered entirely by renewable energy.

    This sounds like a totally fabulous plan to us, and one we fully support! It’s also worth mentioning that Earth Day coincides with the World Recycle Week campaign, launched by popular fashion retailer H&M. The high-street chain is offering money-off incentives for anyone who brings old garments to their in-store recycling banks for clothes, and their end goals are to prevent any garments being sent to landfill and to save natural resources. From start to finish, manufacturing a single t-shirt can use up roughly 2,100 litres of water – yowsah! Every item donated to one of H&M’s collection boxes could help to save this quantity of water and have a positive impact on the environment.

    Here at deTerra, our policy always has – and always will be – to uphold only the strictest policies of sustainability. We purchase all our wood directly to ensure a transparent and full chain of custody, and all timber is sourced from sustainable forests with well-established replanting programmes. What’s more, we regularly visit each of our suppliers to ensure that all our rigid eco policies are being followed to the letter! We love this gorgeous green Earth and therefore ensure we waste no timber and keep our carbon footprint to an absolute minimum. We even use any leftover wood scraps to fuel our biomass burner and heat our offices!

    I could wax lyrical about more amazing pro-environmental pioneers all day long. However, I can contain my excitement no longer and right now I must dash – to see about planting some trees myself! If you get involved in Earth Day, please be sure to send us some snaps via our Twitter or Facebook pages.

    Ta ta for now,

    The deTerra Diarist

     

    Posted by the deTerra diarist

    Hey-diddle-doo, copper kitchen clan!

    The hip and happening young things that we are, Cabineto and I like to be down with the latest trends – especially as far as solid wood kitchens are concerned! We’ve spied a leaning towards beautiful copper kitchen accessories this year, which look really warm and welcoming, and are fantastically stylish too. To help our devoted deTerra fans tap into this latest trend, we’ve scoured the internet and gathered our fave picks for ultimate copper kitchen inspiration!


      Start the day right by making a brew with this retro pyramid kettle in copper solid wood kitchens

      Image courtesy of BHS.co.uk

    1. Pop the kettle on – The first thing we like to do in the morning is to put on a brew, so naturally this cool copper kettle is our first port of call! With a retro design and a large rounded handle to balance its proportions, this pyramid kettle is a fun and funky way to make your morning cuppa that little bit more fabulous.


    2. A copper cafetière is a stylish way of making your morning dose of caffeine solid wood kitchens

      Image courtesy of houseoffraser.co.uk

    3. Wake up and smell the coffee… with this sleek coffee pot! If the scent of a freshly-brewed cup of Joe is your ideal morning wake up call, this plunge pot from Barista & Co is the perfect pick, and is our go-to gadget for either traditionally-made coffee or a refreshing cold brew.

      This copper cafetière makes up to 8 cups and is a great kitchen accessory for budding baristas!


    4. Wake up to a proper cappuccino with this elegant coffee maker from De'Longhi solid wood kitchens

      Image courtesy of delonghi.com

    5. Feel the power! If you prefer coffee to be precisely poured by a machine, you will be delighted to discover this elegant copper coffee maker from the experts at De’Longhi. Complete with milk frothing spout, drip tray, gently curved edges and copper casing, this appliance is the embodiment of refined Italian sophistication.

      You can also warm cups atop this gorgeous gadget as you master the perfect cup of coffee.


    6. This fabulous two-tone toaster is perfect for providing breakfast for all the family solid wood kitchens

      Image courtesy of dualit.com

    7. The toast of the town – We are all over this two-tone toaster by Dualit! Toast is the perfect accompaniment to your morning brew, and this four-slot toaster caters for all the family. This luxurious companion for wood worktops even comes with defrost and bagel settings, as well as an in-built timer. What’s even more impressive is that it can toast up to as many as 130 slices of bread an hour, should you need to provide breakfast for friends en masse!


    8. Make rubbish disposal a little more glamorous with this gorgeous copper kitchen pedal bin solid wood kitchens

      Image courtesy of next.co.uk

    9. Say ‘good riddance’ to bad rubbish and ‘hello’ to this beautiful new pedal bin! This copper-effect bin is a perfectly pretty method of disposing of your kitchen waste – who said rubbish had to be unsightly, eh?

      It’s ‘sayonara’ to traditional silver and ‘g’day’ to gorgeous golden kitchen trimmings like this! Two-tone metallic designs are also a firm favourite this year, so take note, deTerrarinos!


    10. Copper salt and pepper grinders make for a stylish tabletop condiment set solid wood kitchens

      Image courtesy of next.co.uk

    11. These copper grinders are certainly worth their salt! This salt and pepper set combines easy functionality with stylish design to make a smashing table-top condiment companion.

      They say good things come in pairs and these bad boys are no exception! Bin boring old grinders and flavour your food with a touch of flair by giving this stunning set pride of place on your kitchen table.


    12. This ergonomic KitchenAid copper-finish knife is an excellent combination of practicality and style solid wood kitchens

      Image courtesy of overstock.com

    13. You won’t want to chop and change once you discover this stunning copper knife set from KitchenAid. This much sought-after, 14-piece set teams fantastically strong carbon stainless steel blades with wonderfully ergonomic handles that have a cool copper-effect finish.

      With a variety of sizes for you to tackle any manner of chopping tasks, this copper kit is a supreme blend of utility and style.


    14. This wire basket makes a perfect fruit bowl in oak kitchens with copper accessories solid wood kitchens

      Image courtesy of notonthehighstreet.com

    15. Not totally bowled over yet? We love this copper fruit bowl from the folk at notonthehighstreet.com. With a wire frame, the basket is light and delicate, whilst channelling the on-trend industrial aesthetic.

      Alternatively, this copper basket is mighty useful on countertops and in entrance halls for storing all sorts of odds and ends!


    16. Switch on to the copper trend with this modern industrial pendant lamp solid wood kitchens

      Image courtesy of lighting-direct.co.uk

    17. Shine a little light… with this striking copper pendant lamp. Complete with an eye-catching decorative filament bulb, this design is perfect for adding warm ambience to natural kitchens, and its height can be adjusted to suit your room’s requirements.

      With a high-shine copper finish, this modern industrial lamp is ideal for casting light all around your kitchen.


    18. This miniature copper colander is ideal for washing and serving fresh fruit solid wood kitchens

      Image courtesy of amazon.co.uk

    19. Make serving-up salad a delight with this charming copper miniature colander! Turn tasks such as washing smaller fresh produce into a treat with this teeny-tiny utensil.

      Made from stainless steel, this colander may be small but it’s certainly robust. Twin handles and a stable base allow for easy serving, and makes this a stunning alternative way of presenting fresh fruit at the table.

    So – faithful deTerrabytes – that’s the low-down on the latest copper accessories trend – talk about a copper-bottomed kitchen makeover! It is truly fabulous to see how investing in a few simple additions can really give kitchens a lift. If you have any copper kitchen complements already in situ, we’d love you to share some snaps with us via Twitter or Facebook.

    Ta ta for now,

    The deTerra Diarist

     

    Posted by the deTerra diarist

    Super springtime salutations to you all!

    My log cabin is feeling shipshape and clutter-free after an epic seasonal cleaning session, and – my word – I am simply full to the brim of the joys of spring! Now that I’m feeling especially house-proud and all, it has got me thinking about ways of keeping worktops safe for those lumber lovers among us with wood kitchens.

    We get up to allsorts when whipping up a culinary delight, from heating pans to chopping fresh produce and the odd accidental spillage (all Cabineto’s fault, of course!). With all this going on, it’s best to put a few good practices in place to ensure that your timber tops are kept in tiptop condition!

    too hot to handle!

    Hot pots and pans are hazard numero uno for many kinds of worktop – particularly natural surfaces. The heat of dishes taken straight from the oven or stove can create burn marks on a timber surface, and whilst this damage can be mended, Cabineto and I firmly believe the mantra that ‘an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure’. To protect wooden worktops from excess heat, we recommend installing hot rods. Hot rods are stainless steel bars that fit into grooves routed into the worktop, and protect the surface from scorching. Whilst making an attractive and practical feature, they are also hygienic and can be easily removed for cleaning.

    Those who treasure their timber might fancy investing in a trivet instead, which has the added benefit that it can be moved to wherever you need to place down your pans!

    scratches get the chop

    Here at deTerra, it is enforced at induction that chopping directly onto wood worktops is a serious no-no. Others don’t seem to have had the memo though, so I feel I should take it upon myself to promote the virtues of our much-revered chopping boards. If you take a cheeky peek at our worktops page, you will discover that many of them our timber surfaces have matching chopping boards available! Using a chopping board helps to keep your worktop in pristine condition, and can also be used as a smashing serving platter.

    no crying over spilt milk

    Hardwood worktops are naturally durable and resistant to small spills. However, if they’ve been a little neglected lately, they can become susceptible to staining or discoloration. For a well-maintained worktop that provides years of loyal service, I should highlight that moisture-resistant does not equal water-proof, so if you see any spills it’s best to mop them up ASAP. Marks may appear if droplets of water or grease are left on work surfaces without being wiped away.

    To make wood worktops more resistant to such spillages, deTerrarinos are recommend to oil them regularly for the first six weeks after installation and every three months thereafter, creating a moisture-resistant barrier to keep worktops in prime condition.

    Wonderful wood worktops make a fabulous addition to any home, so it’s best to show them the love they deserve to ensure that they remain the quality kitchen companions nature designed them to be!

    If you have any queries about caring for your worktop, feel free to get in touch by phoning 03333 703333, or emailing .

     

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