Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Pawpaw Pondering

It has been a while and there’s been much cooking without much photographing, as I’m relearning the pleasures of eating hot food fresh off the stove/out of the oven.

There’s been a Bouchon brandade wrapped up in some smuggled/imported piquillo peppers.  Pawpaw ice cream.  A southern breakfast feast with fresh, thin picnic chops, ¼" bone in chops (Millgate is selling whole and half pigs--I got half of one), biscuits (thanks Pete) and jam, redeye and sawmill gravies, fried green tomatoes with sriracha remulade, and some eggs.  And a ridiculously simple and satisfying dinner of roasted/braised chicken in vermouth with quartered carrots and baby turnips.  The next night it was sake braised pork cheeks over polenta with the braising liquid and vegetables.  Add to that, just this past Saturday the backyard looked like an urban version of The Killing Fields as we thinned out the CSA's flock..

We’ve been curing a bit too.  Bertolli’s tesa, a standard guanciale recipe (See Batali and Allen for nearly identical recipes), bacon (Ruhlman via NYT).  Also some headcheese/souse/brawn/whatever seasoned like Bertolli's coppa di testa.  Leftover red wine vinegar and cabbage are fermenting.  Naturally fermented hard cider in the basement is on it’s way too (fingers crossed).  It's been busy.

It’s hard to motivate to post recipes that are already posted about so well (or even not so well) all around the web.  For example, NPR can handle the pawpaw posts better than I can.  And there are some great photographers (although how people find the time to take day-it pics and still afford the food is a trick I’d like to know; and lightboxes just are not going to happen here), and plenty of beautiful writers.  

The point here has never really been about saying “look at how cool this is!” or "where can this blog go?" or "here's the new hot thing."  It’s more about the tons of great food around here (and elsewhere), how we’re eating it at home, and most importantly where it’s available in and around Cleveland.  I still think there are tons of people in Northeast Ohio that don't realize how good we have it in terms of availability of ingredients.

So it may continue to be slow around here.  Hard to say.  While there’s no doubt that the summer in NEO is hard to beat in terms of fresh, healthful food, winter tends to be my time for hunkering down and giving more thought to meals, maybe precisely because there’s not so much fresh stuff around, and that's what usually leads to posts.  In the meantime, the archives run deep.


Anonymous said...

you gotta keep going: give the people what they want!

Diane said...

A family that cooks together has a lot of fun.

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