Then Reduce, About Four Hours


I’m making brown beef stock. If there is ever a recipe that suits me, it’s the one that let’s stuff sit in a pot for four hours. These instructions suit me well. I have stuff to do, children mind, cows to support. The let-it-bubble recipes are completely in line with my life ( if this is not your life, I highly recommend living your life as though it were ). So we make brown beef stock for future winter soups and lovely sauces supporting yummy meat. As a beef farmer, these are the tasks you must face. What do you do with beef bones after all the meaty bits went to beef curry?

In this beef brun:

Roasted beef bones and bits
Tom purée
Red wine

Inspired by Saveur Cooks, Authentic French.

Lunch: Ham and Cheese


It’s what I was in the mood for. An all-day drive to Barcelone and back made for a lazy next day. Assembling sand-weech was about all I had in me.

In this sandwich:

Cheap supermarket baguette
Ham ( sans cuenne )

These are the wind power things outside of Narbonne. The sunset last night made them look perty.


What Do You Do With Three Small Potatoes?


Duck confit in the oven, I wonder if these three potatoes will come together. I support the terrine of people who believe that you can gratin ( say that ” grah – ten ” ) darn near anything.

But three, small potatoes? Not likely. But wait, I have mushrooms. I have aromatics. Let’s see what forty minutes covered in thick cream snuggled in an average oven does.


Also added was half of a small onion. The other half would have joined the dish were it not for some butter fingers that failed to catch the little guy after it was halved. Wipe well your fingers after buttering your crock.

In this gratin:

Three small potatoes
Six everyday mushrooms
Two small cloves of garlic
Half a small onion sautéd in duck fat
Some celery also sautéd in duck fat
Pinch of fresh thyme
Heavy creme

Butter a small terrine, add the goods and cover in creme. Bake for thirty or forty minutes in a 150C oven.

Have a glass if wine. Chat with your husband or cat or friends. Check. When it’s smoodgie and submits to a poke with a fork … Pull it out and dig in.

Three potatoes were well received. A few more weeks now for the new ones to harvest.

Late Lunch: Veal and Swelled Rice


Lunch, at last, arrives at 4:15pm. This may be the best cracker I ever ate. It’s been a busy day on the farm. I will spare you the details. A small veal hanger steak was on offer. I served with some risotto. I’m not a big rice eater, but when life gives you short pearly rice, make risotto. As you introduce the stock to the rock hard rice, you think and drink and ponder. Risotto is a grumpy Italian farmer’s wife invention. A result so yummy, they are encouraged to glue to the stove, holding a no-chase-chase-the-toddler free card. Meanwhile, tired Italian dads run around getting junior off the hay bales, out of the tractor and away from the bulls and lake.

Lunch finished at 4:30. Inhaled by me all by myself without any thought of where junior might be. No time for any food fluffing. This is my lunch, four hours late, by the dishes I didn’t do.

In the ris:

  • buttah
  • onions
  • celery
  • chook stock
  • Zach saffron
  • Comte
  • Parsley

The veal was amazing. I’m very proud to have been part of raising that flavor. On the veal-to-beef flavor spectrum, it was a seven. Closer in beefy flavor with all the tenderness of veal. I hope we can replicate this.


  • salt
  • pep
  • butter
  • fried in lard

I’m Stuffing These Babies


They spoke to me at the marche. I thought they needed to be stuffed. Stuffed with

Ground pork
Zuch innards
A dash of chook stock
Some white wine

And baked in a typical oven with a little zucchini hat.

Stuffed zucchini, it’s what’s for dinner.

Chocolate Sauce


One time, after lunch, we needed some dessert. Sometimes, you need dessert and you didn’t plan for this need ahead of time. It was then we realized that you melt chocolate in a pan and dip darn near anything in it. Voila! Dessert. Not just any chocolate will do the job. “Chocolat Dessert” is what the marches in France call it ( duh, I should have figured this out long ago ). In America, I think it’s called baker’s chocolate. Or you can use semi-sweet chocolate chips. I always have melting chocolate on hand because it lasts in the pantry and has the added bonus of dessert potential at any moment. With the shops closed through the two hour lunch and finish the day at seven, you need to plan sweet cravings ahead of time.


Usually we do a slow melt with a spot of cream and a dash of salt. Tonight, I added two new friends

Sweetened condensed milk
Vanilla extract

Then, magic happened.
I didn’t take notes on the ratio, but I think this chocolate sauce is something you feel. You can serve it over a cottage cake ( not very sweet, heavy on the butter )

Or if cake isn’t your thing, spoon it.


Or if you’re six, eat what’s on your plate and save some for later.