Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Slow Food Is A Lifestyle

One of the tenets of Slow Food is growing your own food. My husband hates to mow grass, says it's inedible [at least he won't eat it] and in the beginning there was a lot to mow.

Once the grass in the front yard was removed using a grub hoe we prepared some beds with walkways in which to plant herbs the first year.

The next year I had towers for my beans [planted to enrich the soil] within the beds and had built an espaliered apple tree fence to enclose one side of the garden and a Belgian fence with pears and a quince on the other.

During the summer when I am out weeding or sitting in the shade of that big old spruce, people often stop and ask about growing trees on wires or why I plant that flower with that vegetable or just feel inclined to sit and talk and drink iced tisanes. And believe it or not, I also have enough room under those spreading boughs to pile a cord or more of wood to use in my cook stove this winter so I can continue my slow food lifestyle with soup simmering on the back and homemade bread fresh from the oven.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

French Food Friday

Beginning Friday, May 1, 2015, join me for the premiere of French Food Friday. The goal is to eat, manger, and drink, boire, only French food, la nourriture--it even sounds healthier in French! Be it breakfast, le petit déjeuner lunch, le déjeuner, l'apéritif or supper, le souper, vive la difference!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Pecan Sticky Buns - Tuesdays With Dorie

My sticky buns rose too much for my pan [2 new 2" pans are on my batterie de cuisine list], but the color is great and the layers are flaky and tender. This «Tuesday With Dorie» we were making Nancy Silverton's brioche and pecan sticky buns from Baking With Julia.
Once the buns were flipped over and the caramel ran down over them, it proved not to be enough. Although the flavor was okay and the color was just right, the effort required to make this recipe of brioche did not produce a good enough result to warrant repeating it.

I was impressed with how painting the dough with egg wash helped to hold the nuts into the layers, but there was not enough cinnamon or sugar for flavor--and believe it or not, it could have used butter combined with the sugar/cinnamon. All that butter in the dough did not impart flavor [maybe salted butter would have worked better] and the dough itself seemed flat in taste. I have half a recipe of the brioche left in the freezer and I plan to make a savory product at week's end--maybe the savory filling will make up for the flat taste of the dough itself.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Provençal Olive Fougasse

Finally, a bread with lots and lots of crust! Recipe is from Dorie Greenspan's Around My French Table, p. 48, and is my first attempt at fougasse and French Fridays With Dorie. I did not use olives nor fresh rosemary, but the taste is still very good. Broken chunks would be wonderful spread with rillettes or paté and eaten with cornichons.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Stuffed Dates

Two very different tastes, two scrumptious flavors. On the left, orange flower water flavored almond paste stuffed date. On the right, grilled turkey bacon wrapped parmesan cheese stuffed date. Sweet and sweet-salty morsels of goodness for a treat or an addition to an appetizer tray. Serve with a glass of port or Vin de Noix.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Brie en Croute

Just a square of puff pastry surrounding a wheel of brie, brushed with egg wash and baked on white paper. Sublime with homemade chutney from the peaches in last summer's garden and spread on thin-rolled buttermilk biscuits/crackers …

Friday, December 21, 2007

Steamed Fig Pudding - SHF#38

Zorra hosts this month's Sugar High Friday, "The Proof Is In the Pudding."

When I was a child, the Jewel Tea man, a peddlar, used to come to my home. One of the items my mother purchased from him in winter was fig bars. This is a recipe from the back of those boxes--which were yellow with red letters, called

Fig Pudding Enchanted
1 pound fig bars
1 1/4 cups hot milk
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg, beaten,
3/4 cup flour
2 teaspoons double-acting baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup chopped nuts [I didn't use any today]

Put fig bars through food chopper, add hot milk, and mix well. Add sugar and beaten egg. Sift flour, baking powder and salt together. Add to fig mixture, followed by nuts. Mix ingredients well together. Fill greased molds 2/3 full, cover tightly, and steam for 2 1/2 hours. Serve hot with pudding sauce or cold with whipped cream. Serves 8.

You don't have a food chopper? Fear not--just chop the fig bars with a knife. Adding them to the hot milk will dissolve them very well.

I butter and sugar the mold--this keeps it from sticking--it also makes for a darker crust on the outside of the pudding.

Mom always served it with a tangy lemon sauce made from lemon juice, zest, corn starch and sugar.

See also my posts on baked mincemeat pudding and boiled pudding on my other blog, 18thC Cuisine
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