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bleudauvergne

eG Foodblog: bleudauvergne

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Lucy, you make things looks so effortless! Thank you for blogging. I was really fascinated by your account and photos of wild and farmed rabbit - where else could one learn such secrets!


Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

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Thanks to everyone for your kind comments. :blush:

This morning, brisk and clear, was perfect for the errands I had to run. Before leaving for the market, I happened across the thread in which a member asks how to prepare J Robuchon's recipe for mashed potatoes, which in turn gets me lost in a dreamy swoon all though Jack's Potato Primer. So finally getting my butt out of the house I’m still thinking about potatoes. All my life I’ve been a potato blind. I knew there were some that made good potato salad, and some that were better for puree, and which kind to choose when I make the tartiflette, but I never seem to remember which kind is which, when I see a potato in the bin I am simply clueless. And there are plenty to choose from.

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This is the one that is recommended for Robuchon's famous purée de pommes de terre.

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It's really easy to see how someone like me can mix this up with new potatoes, because they're little just like them... I asked the vendor a few questions and she was surprised I didn’t know everything about potatoes. Educate me, I pleaded. Are they always that small? Well, this is the ratte, they look like that because that’s the race. OK.

I'm actually at the market to ask the vollailler what the word is. She's got a line of customers, and I'm not going to get into a long conversation with her, but she said she'd check and see what she could get for me for the feast.

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We had narrowed it down to a goose or a turkey when we last spoke this weekend. I was thinking I might be more likely to get a goose in a large size, thinking they are grown large pretty much all year - and she said she'd check to see if she could get a big Goose. I wanted her to get the goose mainly because I knew that she would prepare it herself, and she wouldn't mangle the bird. This morning she'd done her checking, and she seemed concerned about being able to feed my group with a goose, she says they don't have nearly as much meat as the turkeys. She expressed this concern again. She said the largest she could get is about 4 kilos, and she didn't think that would be enough for 10 people. A turkey of the same size is going to have significantly more meat, she said. She showed me another turkey that she had ready for another order for today, and I saw that it was in pretty good shape although it did have that huge signature gash along the side of the opening where you stuff it at the bottom. What do they do to cause this GASH and why can't they just cleanly remove the innards without completely destroying it? Oh well. I orderd the turkey. Images of the crepin crown of thorns comes to mind again. Look, if anyone has experience with Geese, and can recommend one anyway, I might go back and change my order.

This woman has a heart of gold.

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Moving on down the line, I see an enormous brioche. I am thinking I would kill for a bagel at the moment. Bagel. A real bagel. This idea has gotton into my head, not a bagel from the only bagel shop in Lyon, a place that imports them frozen from the Netherlands and then lets them sit in the window all day long in the sun drying out and looking stale. A bagel. :blush: These kinds of thoughts haunt me from time to time. I could be perfectly content with a slice of brioche. But no. Nothing but a bagel will do.

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I saw a guy who sells pumpkins and squash and now that the season is in full swing he's been preparing nice jars of velouté. This attracts me because the pies have not been decided, and since he prepared this just a few days ago, it's bound to be good, and it will save us some work. I asked if he adds anything - he said that since the pumpkin has a hint of a chestnut flavor, he adds only a little but of chestnut to the puree. Otherwise it's pure pumpkin. I get one.

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I ask the guy selling the endives if keeps them in the dark. He explains that during the summer they're in the ground. And then when it's time, they take the roots and pack them with some dirt in crates and put them in a dark basement. Then one month later, voila, here are the endives. I didn't buy any, but I do plan to get some of these and see how they taste.

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Desperate for a bagel, I figure I've got one down and one to go if I get some cream cheese.

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I hustle back to the boulanger and ask if they have any dough, any kind will do. I am dead set on a bagel for lunch. While she's in the back getting some, I see a couple of interesting looking tartes. Seeing these reminds me why these people do such good business.

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Now, down to the business of patching together some semblance of a bagel. :smile:

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Good Morning!

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Stunning pictures, as usual, Lucy! May I ask where you got the bowl that your coffee is in? I noticed these bowls from your last blog ~ they're beautiful.

Hilary

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I'm so glad to see expat's making Thanksgiving.  My first year here, I didnt bother with Thanksgiving and I found that I really missed it.  So, this will be my 3rd time hosting a dinner for my Canadian inlaw's and friends.  I know of no better way to introduce them to the ubiquitous green bean casserole( actually, I decided to not make it this year and instead I am making the entire meal from Cooking Light).

Lucy, do you get fresh cranberries in France? 

I actually made some cranberry,cherry walnut conserve and I am surprised how easy it is.  I cant believe I've never bothered making cranberry sauce before.

Randi, I've found that experiencing Thanksgiving away from home makes me think really hard about it. Not just the meal, but what it means. People ask me, what is Thanksgiving? Is the well thought out answer I give always exactly what I feel it to be in my heart? Is it the comfort of home? Those dishes mama makes every year, and only at Thanksgiving? Is it about giving Thanks for what we have? Community? Family? All of those things? Is it about stuffing? I find that every year my thoughts about Thanksgiving are different. Every year I learn something new about myself. This will be my 10th Thanksgiving abroad in my adult life.

Cranberries. Now you've touched on a difficult theme. Five years ago I found nothing. I was asking my mother to bring cans. (My mother used to do something with cranberries and orange peels in the blender - hmm, won't be reliving that again) Then discovered that a frozen foods purveyor, Picard, sometimes stocked them frozen. They didn't do the trick. I now hear through the grapevine that they can be had at the Ikea food shop. I considered going to Ikea for the sole reason of obtaining cranberries. Imagine. Drive one hour. Spend 45 minutes circulating in the parking lot. Maneuver through the maze. Find cranberries. :laugh: I should make some real sauce - can you post your recipe?

Hilary, thanks for the compliment on the bowls. I got them at the annual ceramics fair that takes place every September in Lyon. This fair dates back to medieval times when the king declared that the artisans could sell their goods at this particular fair once a year without having to pay tax. The tradition has been upheld and the fair is enormous. There are lots of pretty things to see and buy at that time.

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A goose won't feed 10 people. 2 might. "Silly bird, too much for one and not enough for two". 4-6 people tops, and lots of goode fat.

As I'm sure you know, the key step in bagel making is to dip into for a minute or so into boiling alkaline water befoe baking. If you haven't got edible lye, or chinese Alkali water, use a couple of tbs of baking soda. The alkali givs the shine.


Edited by jackal10 (log)

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Desperate Expats Guide : Bagels.

1) Get some levain bread dough from the baker. Don't be picky.

2) Form a bagel shape from the dough. Don't worry, it doesn't have to look pretty. You're not going to be selling this. It be ugly and that is AOK. Let the bagel shape rise for about 15 minutes.

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3) Give your bagel shaped dough a bath in salted boiling water to give it a life.

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4) Voila, your bagel shaped dough has taken a new path in life. It is now a freshly newborn bagel, so ugly, only a mother could love it.

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I love you, my precious!

5) Bake for 15 minutes in a hot oven. Pull out the fresh hot bagel and let it cool until easily handled. Slice in half and grill until toasted. Serve with cream cheese.

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It came very close. (well, not really. :angry: ) Lunch: 'A bagel'.

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:biggrin::biggrin:

Interesting that this longing arose two days before Thanksgiving!

You know, during a long stint of living in Italy, I started out renting a room in an apartment owned by the widow of one of Mussolini's generals. That's right.

Moreover, la Signora's Beloved had been captured by the British who, she fiercely hissed, treated him miserably. She was left back home, fending for her family with only one egg to feed the lot for the week.

"Solamente un'uovo! UN'uovo!"

Can you see her frail finger pointing and shaking between her face and mine?

One day we were standing in the kitchen. Her son and his girlfriend had come to visit, bringing groceries. I noticed the silver package of Philadelphia cream cheese and was amused that in this country of excellent cheeses, including some rather nice, fresh, creamy mild ones, that one more U.S. corporation had managed to nudge its way into the European marketplace and remarked upon its presence.

"What, it's American?," la Generalissima exclaimed with surprise, "It's not Italian?"

"Yes, it's American," I started to explain. "We use it on..." and then searching for a way to explain what a toasted bagel is, "un tipo di pane Hebraic..."

From behind his mother's head, Luciano was gesturing frantically, eyebrows arching nearly to the top of his skull, mouth open in alarm.

He didn't want me to say the word "Jewish."

Translations: 1) Only one egg. ONE egg! 2) a type of bread that's Jewi....


Edited by Pontormo (log)

"Viciousness in the kitchen.

The potatoes hiss." --Sylvia Plath

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Lucy,

Lovely lovely cooking and pictures.

Makes me long for the time I was living abroad.

Even with the cravings for random "American" food, I never enjoyed life, walking through the markets, or cooking more.

Thank you. Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving, even with your turkey with the gash, or the small goose.

Pof.

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Bagels, huh? You know, I just realized that I've only lived on the East Coast of the USA for my entire life, I've always had access to good bagels. How quickly and economically can we ship them to France, I wonder? I mean, you've been so good to all of us...... and a bagel, it's a pity to do without.


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Thanks for the offer Rebecca! Oh, I've done this long without them, I'll keep enjoying the real thing when I go home to visit. It was very nice to think of me, though.

This afternoon I took some time to finish up a work related project and also put the terrine together. The terrine was lots of fun and didn't take a whole lot of time, but I got worried twice. One was when I realized we didn't have any Cognac. I did a Lucy and just used Armagnac. The next was when I began to have second thoughts about the dried mirabelles I'd picked out, and just went ahead full steam ahead anyway. So it's in the oven now and I'm not sure what's going to become of it. I figure if I weigh it down with enough weight and for a long enough time it'll be fine. I was worried about the mirabelles because they seemed a bit stiff. I hope the cooking juices will soften them up.

A word about they day we celebrate Thanksgiving. Since we have relatives coming, and Thursday is not a holday here, we have always had the family meal on Saturday. This gives everyone a chance to travel and get here in time for dinner.

So this Thursday I'll have a little celebration here between Loic and I but nothing too special. :blush: Tonight we're having steak. In France the steaks are cut a bit diferent from the ones you normally find back home. Tonight we will be eating a cut called the Aloyau, which is the muscle in the back.

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Lucy - you're such a great, natural cook, that it's a real pleasure to follow your adventures. How goes the bresse chicken quest?


"Gimme a pig's foot, and a bottle of beer..." Bessie Smith

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Lucy, I would definitely stick with the turkey. Goose is good, but you will need 2-3 of them to feed 10 people.

Your bagel looks good, but I would kill to have the pear cake or chocolate brioche.

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Here is the recipe I made. CL calls it a cranberry chutney. Here is my adaption of the recipe.

1 cup sugar

1 cup water

1/2 cup port or other sweet red wine

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1/2 cup dried tart cherries

1 (12-ounce) package fresh cranberries

2/3 cup chopped walnuts, toasted

1/2 teaspoon grated orange rind

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

Orange rind strips (optional)

Combine the first 4 ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Add the cherries and simmer for 1 min. Add cranberries and simmer until they pop( about 10 min). Remove from heat, stir in the walnuts and orange peel and extract.

I made this yesterday and has a nice flavor.

Lucy, I hope you can find some fresh cranberries.

Enjoy.

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FYI: At this very moment on National Public Radio, the chef Peggy Knickerbocker is being interviewed on "The World" about celebrating Thanksgiving in Paris.

She says that the turkeys available to her in Paris tend to be tough and scrawny, "a bit too free-range...and not raised for plump breast meat or thighs."

So she likes taking advantage of all the great game birds available at this time of year, including pheasant which she serves with cornbread!!!


"Viciousness in the kitchen.

The potatoes hiss." --Sylvia Plath

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Hi Moby - I have a mission tomorrow evening to get the old bresse hen from the producers' market. I have been worried a bit lately hoping they have one since they only come in once a week. I need one for the consomme de Poulard de Bresse that I will serve (again) this year as a first course. I should call them just to make sure I get one. If not I may have to go to their farm of Thursday. :smile: If I do get a hen, I might venture to make my own ravioli this time to control what goes into them this time. Moby, do you have any ideas? Your class on pasta got me started. I wrote in my notes that the consomme is perfect plain, but this was a reaction to the truffle raviolis that I put into the soup - which had very strong cheeses and was competing with the soup. I think maybe something more complimentary would be nice. Just one or two ravioli per bowl of soup. Something like crawfish maybe... Can provide any ideas?

Link to Moby's Stuffed Pasta Class in the eGCI :blush: !!

The terrine:

That's the duxelles just getting started and beginning to reduce the rabbits' stock. While this was going on I finished hand mincing all of the meats (to make sure they all were cut up to different sizes) and putting the forcemeat together.

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The two rabbits yielded 2 wine bottles full of nice flavorful rabbit stock. I reduced one to mix into a panade for the terrine:

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(and saved the rest for something else).

Making the Panade:

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All of the elements of the forcemeat: The wild and farmed rabbit, the panade, the duxelles, the pistachios, which have been parboiled and peeled, a little bit of cured ham, some poitrine demi-sel, lean veal, 2 eggs, Armagnac, fresh thyme, some herbes de provence (my supply from Brigitte, my mother-in-law who lives down south), a large pinch of nutmeg, pepper, a little of my creole spice mix, salt, and pepper.

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I gave this a good mix with my hands and got ready to put it all together.

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The mustard here is a dijon which is marketed by amora as a 'demi-fort'. I like it because you never can overdose on this stuff. I am sensitive to dijon mustard overdoses. So I used the 'demi-fort' this time to make sure I didn't overdo it.

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I rolled that up and placed it in the terrine which I had halfway filled with the forcemeat. I decided at the last minute to reinforce the flattened haunches with a slice of ham because it seemed fragile.

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Ready for the oven.

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FYI: At this very moment on National Public Radio, the chef Peggy Knickerbocker is being interviewed on "The World" about celebrating Thanksgiving in Paris.

She says that the turkeys available to her in Paris tend to be tough and scrawny, "a bit too free-range...and not raised for plump breast meat or thighs."

So she likes taking advantage of all the great game birds available at this time of year, including pheasant which she serves with cornbread!!!

I would think that pintade goes much better with cornbread! :cool: She must have a good recipe! We're going to definitely make the most of what we have come to be thankful for here. :smile:

Pontormo, I took lots of pictures of the diferent game birds at the market today and I'll put them up for you tomorrow morning if you're interested. :smile:

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Lucy, I'm not sure whether Ikea would have cranberries or not, but if they don't, they probably will have cloudberries in some form. Cloudberries are great and something like cranberries. And there's always lingonberry jam, which is also terrific and something like cranberry sauce. Actually, I like lingonberry jam better, but if it just has to be American, I suppose only cranberries will do.

Given my having missed decent bread and American-style cake when I was in Malaysia for two years, I can somewhat relate to your cravings for things American, but boy oh boy, if I could have those tartes rhubarbe... [slobbering emoticon]


Michael aka "Pan

 

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Dinner:

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Michael, your thought of the lingonberry is genious. I'll check out availability. I don't see it in my normal routes but maybe I can find it at one of the import shops. Excellent idea, thank you. And Randi! Thank you so much for the recipe!

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Yes, Lucy, I would be interested :biggrin:

I LOVE European markets :wub: and have never traveled to your hometown, so, please do not feel constrained by an avian theme. People, produce, whatever you see that strikes you, please.


"Viciousness in the kitchen.

The potatoes hiss." --Sylvia Plath

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I recently saw a recipe for roasted shallot cranberry sauce that sounded awesome. Basically roast whole shallots and stir into your cranberry sauce. Basic sauce made by putting whole berries in a saucepot, add a bit of water and some sugar, simmer till the berries burst. Mix in roasted shallots, adjust seasoning and chill.

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Pontormo, I took lots of pictures of the diferent game birds at the market today and I'll put them up for you tomorrow morning if you're interested.  :smile:

Yes, yes, yes, please! I know I'm not Pontormo, but I say do it! :wink: Gorgeous terrine-making photos, Lucy.


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What a pleasant surprise on my return home - a new blog from Lucy. I'm concerned about catching up on all of my work now.... must keep checking eGullet.... :wink:

Bagels, huh? You know, I just realized that I've only lived on the East Coast of the USA for my entire life, I've always had access to good bagels. How quickly and economically can we ship them to France, I wonder? I mean, you've been so good to all of us...... and a bagel, it's a pity to do without.

I grabbed a bagel from H&H Bagels last week and noticed that the bag (and website) claims that they ship worldwide....


Edited by Pam R (log)

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