This month, Sally chats with Aysha Monticone from Kinfolk and Co. about comfort food.
Aysha is the founder of Kinfolk and Co. A small business that was born from a love of stories shared over a meal, the passing down of traditions and communities brought together by a passion for good food.
Sally is a huge fan of Kinfolk and Co. and Aysha’s ethos with every piece she creates.
Sally: In this current climate, I have found that the distinction between weekends and weekday mornings have become so blurred. Do you agree? What do your mornings look like these days? How have they changed?
Aysha: Absolutely! My partner and I joke about everyday feeling like a Sunday. We are actually really loving our slow mornings, the first thing we do when we wake up is go for a beach walk together as a family. Once we're home, we cook breakfast and sit around the table. This is very different from our typical mornings, where we would normally eat quickly to get out the door. We are all benefiting from the slower pace, it actually sometimes feels like we're on holidays except that my partner is working at home each day. All this time together has brought us closer as a family and we love that there is no rushing to be anywhere at any time.
Sally: For a while I've been embracing hygge, but that's definitely ramped right up now! How do you look for comfort in this current state? And what are the things you cook (with and without the kids) for comfort?
I am definitely finding comfort in cooking and preparing food, it's where I feel most comfortable in the house. I love that I now have the time to prepare the foods that I really like to make for example, fermented foods, pickles, homemade pasta, curry pastes, dips, sauces, cookies, and endless deserts! I’m also enjoying flicking through my cookbooks and deciding on a few recipes that I've been wanting to make and actually having time to make them. Having our veggie boxes delivered each week has also been a fun food challenge. Because I never really know what is going to be in them, I like discovering the new and sometimes exotic fruits and vegetables and working out the best way to use them whilst also creating a delicious meal.
I am also really finding comfort in being outdoors and in the garden. I have just started a veggie garden and am currently growing various herbs, tomatoes, lettuce, beans, and edible flowers. The seedlings are only in the early stages but I really enjoying watering them each day and seeing how much they have grown. When I have too many seedlings that have popped up in my garden, I have been putting the extras in glass jars with a little soil and delivering them to friends. So many of us in the community have been practicing random little acts of kindness like this and I feel so lucky to be apart of it, especially in these strange times.
Sally: Where do you get inspo for your beautiful wares? And which of the Kinfolk & Co products are giving you the most comfort right now?
I mainly get inspiration for our collections from our natural surroundings, spending time in our kitchen and from the talented Australian ceramists that I work with. I especially like to find common household items and work out if the item can be handcrafted from natural and sustainable materials instead, and redesigned in a more beautiful and functional way. I believe every home can become more ecologically conscious through making better and smarter purchases from ethically minded businesses.
My favourite Kinfolk and Co pieces right now are the fermentation pot, I love having a constant flow of freshly made, organic sauerkraut and kimchi in the fridge. I am also loving our mug range, as the weather cools I am reaching out for a comforting mug of Mayde herbal tea every morning. We are also in a beautiful ritual of lighting dinner candles each night for dinner, the children especially love this nightly practice. We also have a daily ritual of lighting incense in the morning and burning essential oil at night. I find creating simple daily practices like this gives the whole family so much peace, calmness and joy after a long day together.
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