Archive for September, 2015


Sunday Drive

The weather isn’t really cold yet.

Apple picking IMHO is better done in sweater weather, but, if the orchids call, fresh pressed cider to confirm the beginning of fall is flowing.

A Rhode trip to the northern part of the state. The foliage is just barely starting to turn not ready for the hard core leaf peepers yet.

If the orchid also has bakery treats, then all the better for the family sweet tooth(s).

Not only do you have your choice of apples, but your choice of the many orchids that have apples/fruits available.

IMG_8798Apple strudels and other pastries.

I had a taste of the apple strudel, very flaky.

IMG_8817one gallon and 1/2 gallon of cider.

one gallon to ferment, the other to drink.

The best apple cider taste, full body and mouth feel, deep red brown color.

As the saying goes, once you taste this cider you’ll have a standard to judge all other ciders.

IMG_8805One of the many other orchids along the way.







IMG_8809Back in the city, a stop a Del’s..


IMG_8814The Mrs. , official pastry taster …

IMG_8816Cider and apple stash..

Rhode Island Greening, Macintosh, Opalescent .

Some “B” grade apples were available, others are full size and top grade.

Pick your own also available.


Brunch plate 

Coffee… Then I may accomplish some duties, take a bath or what ever..breakfast may get pushed into a later hour…

Not the greatest of pictures,

Toast, egg, chives, green pepper, pork rilletts, grapefruit.

Pork Rillettes





Salad supper


In an effort to get more greens into my diet……

after a day of driveway mechanics…

Bertucci’s Cobb Salad

Thanks to Renee 🔧🍴👍


Morning plate

Gnocchi , poached egg, fried ground linguica.

My gnocchi leftover dough is a little to soft, should have added a bit more flour, none the less, an alternative to toast and the linguica rounds out the flavor of the dish.


Coffee, 8 o’clock whole bean , a mix of Colombian and arabica coffee, Columbian Peaks. 


september garden update

IMG_8737 IMG_8740IMG_8717IMG_8735IMG_8732

The hydroponic system with bubbler, the containers I fashioned with net pots, no blubber, have done pretty well. The main advantage is no weeding (as with containerized soil based) and  the fact that they receive nutrients 24/7. Only topping off of the bubbler system is necessary on a daily basis. Weekly, drain and refill with fresh nutrient solution. Cost  involved  startup is of purchase nutrients, learning and  developing a nutrient mix for each stage of growth, measurement and adjustment of PH of water, PH paper test strips. The manufacturer of the nutrients usually supplies and charts and info of the use and blend of fertilizers for your hydroponic system.

The tomato plant in the blubber system was the tallest I ever grew and the longest producing, still flowering to date. A sheltered system would extent the growing season. The containerized plantings , using a nutrient mix geared to soil based plants are still flowering and producing peppers and hot peppers and the healthiest plants I’ve had since learning about nutrient/fertilizer application. chives and Basil have steady growth with little maintenance with the Kratky non bubbler, non recriculation system. More to follow….


Green pepper and onion pizza

With the temperatures starting to cool off , running the oven is more bearable.

Green peppers from the garden along with onion,basil, garlic, salt and pepper and a bit of Parmesan.

Dough is a Hodgson  Mill wheat  flour poolish with added white flour.





If you often prepare boiled white rice, this is a version that give the rice a powerful taste and lends itself to many variations and additions. A simple technique to master, just requires time. Can be done with regular rice, but the aborio rice gives it a signature creaminess.


Risotto, a method of cooking rice, usually with Arborio rice. Makes a creamy, rich rice dish and be be a main or a side dish. Many variations exist but basic ingredients are , Arborio rice, stock, butter and onion.

From the label on the container of rice:

(a skillet or fry pan works best giving some room to stir the rice.)

Saute 1/2 cup diced onion in 2 tablespoons olive and 2 tablespoons butter for about 3 minutes. Chicken fat works too.

Add 1 cup uncooked rice to the pan and stir for about 2 minutes, I usually turn up the heat a bit to brown some of the rice.

Have a source of heated broth (3 cups) or stock, usually chicken stock.  I used a small amount of gelled chicken stock along with vegetable broth.

Add 1 cup stock and stir…… stir……. stir  till most of the liquid is absorbed, then add another cup of stock and repeat, this isn’t a quick cooking rice recipe patience rewards with a tasty rice finish. I keep the rice at a medium boil throughout.

Now add the third cup of stock, yes, continue stirring but now taste every so often, this will gauge  your preference for the texture of the finished rice, creamy and soft or creamy with a aldente texture. You can also adjust the flavor with salt and pepper.

Some recipe call for flame out and the addition of grated Parmesan cheese. Be aware that some cheeses tend to be on the salty side so you my want to hold off on the salt and pepper till completed.

IMG_8667onion (and garlic) saute

IMG_8669chicken drippings and fat from  previous cooked chicken.

Use a bit of the fat for sauteing onions for a strong flavor and some drippings along with the stock.


IMG_8674hot vegetable stock ready

IMG_8672Add the stock cup by cup and stir…

IMG_8675you can finish the rice with a cheese addition



Corn salsa and red beans

one good thing about salsa is that it can be any combination of diced whatever you around , mine tends to always have some hot pepper in it either dried or fresh.

Corn from the cob, now seasonal , and onion and garlic and sautĂ©ed in  olive oil and butter starts the mix. A side of red beans , toast and fruit.



Pork Rillettes

A basic pork slow cooked recipe , adapted from Good Housekeeping Illustarted Cookbook. I did this in a slow cooker crock pot with a pork roast bone in , added seasonings and a small amount of water.

Salt and pepper,  hot pepper etc. for seasonings.

Let cook for several hours, till meat can be pulled from the bone. 

At the end of cooking remove cover and let most of the liquid evaporate.

Pack in a container and refrigerate with some of the juices

Similar to pulled pork with the consistency of a spread.

The pork, without cutting it from the bone, cut so the seasonings penetrate the meat.

You could let the meat stand for a few hours but I cooked it right away.

In the crock pot…

Some of the seasonings utilized.

Using the pork rillette , can be used as a spread on a cracker, toast, crusty bread, or…….

I keep several small portions of corn dough in the fridge, when you need corn chips, roll one or two out and cook in or on and cast iron pan or griddle.

Layer the chip with a overripe chopped tomatoe, spoon on some of the pork, top with a fresh diced salsa. Supper’s done !


Broiled chicken thighs with Brussels sprouts and potatoe

In a cast iron skillet ,2 chicken thighs, lightly butter under the skin, salt and pepper. Broil.

When done on one side, about 10 minutes or so depending on the heat of your broiler, pour off some of the grease , turn chicken , add fingerling potatoes , baby Brussels  sprouts.

Reduce heat on broiler if necessary. Remove the potatoe and sprouts when browned  and finish in microwave if necessary. Finish  broiling thighs till done,  about 10 minutes.

In skillet , now stove top , at medium heat, add congealed chicken stock from previous batch of roasted chicken if available,  along with red wine, Melomel  or Pyment.

Reduce , add butter , baste the thighs, return the taters and sprouts to the skillet , baste all , plate.

WOW I made this without onions !

serves 2 or 4 depending on appetite….image…..


September 2015

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