Finally we were able to pick a handful of figs from our little trees/saplings. They aren’t perfect, but they taste luscious with a few slices of prosciutto. It’s an elegant way to end the week. Have a lovely couple of days off, dear friends.
It looked cloudy and cold through the window when we had a minute to glance outside. So we made kabocha squash and scallion pancakes dressed with butter and maple syrup, and rashers of crisp local hickory-smoked bacon for lunch today. Believe it or not, these hotcakes are light as feathers, but full of rich fall flavors. When we took an after-lunch-walk (instead of a nap), turns out it is a positively balmy 75 degrees!
Well, as is always the case, you can look at things two ways…we had a hankering for a lovely block of KeriGold Irish butter that was in our fridge or, we bought the last twelve ears of corn of the season at our local farm stand and we’re rolling them on a block of KeriGold. Along with glasses of cold beer it seems like a great lunch and now we are smiling big corny smiles. We’re running out for toothpicks.
The garden is still pumping it out. This morning we picked long swollen string beans and fat soft tomatoes. We cooked the vegetables separately in heavy pots until the tomatoes melted into their flavorful juices and the spoon tender beans burst opened to reveal their lavender jewels. We ladled everything into soup plates then added a drizzle of good olive oil, some minced shallots, and a sprinkle of Maldon salt—a damn fine lunch.
Day five of “One Bird Feeds Two Women for Five Days”. So we threw the old bird into a pot with lots of sliced fresh ginger, some celery hearts, kaffir lime leaves, an onion, a few black peppercorns, and about 6 cups of water. It gently bubbled away on the back of the stove for a couple of hours. The resulting broth was the chicken’s swan song and what a beautiful aria it was. We strained it and added shiitake mushroom caps, silky tofu, fresh greens, rice noodles, cilantro, and a good squeeze of lime—are you thinking Stone Soup? Have a lovely weekend, dear friends.
Day four of “One Bird Feeds Two Women for Five Days”. We’re down to one chicken breast to split between us. Pas de problem. We sliced the breast into four paillards, dusted them in flour, then pan-fried them in butter and olive oil. We served them with a lemony caper pan-sauce and a warm chanterelle, lemon, and parsley salad. One breast could’ve served four, but we were feeling somewhat gluttonous today. Pardon our piggishness.
Day three of “One Bird Feeds Two Women for Five Days”. The woods have been too dry to gather chanterelles, but yesterday we were blessed with a good soaking rain. This morning dawned clear and beautiful, so we headed into the woods and managed to find a handful of golden chanterelles. We tossed them into the pot with our two chicken thighs, along with some peeled summer tomatoes, and thyme snipped from the balcony. When the chicken was fork-tender, we napped the braised thighs with heavy cream—chicken cacciatore (for those mushrooms we “caught”).