Saturday, November 15, 2008

New on the Square - Kookaburra's

Monroe's Downtown Square welcomed a new business last month. Kookaburra's joined the line up on the north side.

Located between Town and Country Styles and Merle Norman, Kookaburra's features culinary goods from stoneware to spices, from Le Creuset to Bob's Red Mill.

Pull the wooden spoon door handle and walk in. You will be greeted by Laura, a cheery woman in a retro apron. She may be packing up spices on the large center island or cooking up something tasty on the stove in the middle of the store. She will encourage you to try some of the samples distributed around the store. Take her suggestion! She encouraged me to try the Hot Pepper Jelly, and it is fantastic. Laura suggested using it as a dip for egg rolls, which would be perfect, but is not something I ever would have thought of.

Walk around and browse her selection of culinary tools and treats. She carries Le Creuset pots, stoneware and silicone goods. The demi-teapots are adorable, and like all Le Creuset, our grandchildren will probably be using them long after we are gone. There is also a large selection of Stonewall Kitchen mixes, jams, stoneware and utensils. The toaster tongs have been a huge hit in our family.

As you walk toward the back of the store, you will find a collection of dried spices and other culinary basics. There are bags of spices and a handy collection of tinned spices. All are high quality, aromatic spices. It was great to be able to pick up a packet of cayenne pepper, paprika and bay leaves without having to run all the way to the grocery store. Laura mentioned plans to add other high end tidbits like vanilla beans and espresso powder, neither of which can be found anywhere in Monroe, forcing serious cooks to shop out of town before Kookaburra's.

There is a large collection of Bob's Red Mill stone milled flours and gluten-free mixes as well as children's cooking items such as aprons and cookie kits. Fido will appreciate the handcrafted gourmet dog treats. Just be sure to warn the kids that the cute little hamburgers and faux royal icing topped cookies are for the dog or they will surely want to nibble.

Kookaburra's is open daily, and on Wednesdays, they are open until 7 pm. Stop in today or tomorrow (November 15 and 16) for their Open House celebration. Laura will surely be cooking up something on the store's stove, and it is guaranteed to be tasty. Pick up an entry form for Kookaburra's Cookie Contest while you are there. The contest will be on December 6, but entry forms are due by November 29. There is a $2 entry fee, and the winner will receive a Kookabura's gift card.

On second thought, don't pick up that entry form. I am entering and I want that gift card!

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