ad hoc at home

And….we’re back!

We have now survived both a hurricane and a freak blizzard at the lake, and it’s only been 3 (relatively mild) months.  Winter should be interesting.

Despite our loss of power and homelessness this week, J still managed to cook quite a lot at his aunt and uncle’s apartment.  First, he made a delicious mushroom tart (not pictured because with my cell phone camera it just looked like a large not-so-appealing hamantashen).  On our last night there, as a thank you,  he finally tackled two recipes from Ad Hoc at Home by Thomas Keller: Sauteed Tarragon Chicken, and Roman Beans with Shallots and Butter.

I actually found the recipe for the chicken online here:

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/28/dining/281krex.html

As it turns out, the beans he bought were entirely different from what the recipe called for.  The recipe specified Italian flat beans (what the heck are those?).  We later discovered they look like this:

No matter.  It was awesome and definitely a repeat dish.  We had leftovers the next night once we had finally gotten back  up here (yay!), accompanied by red wine and a roaring fire.  It’s so nice to be home.

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corn and potato chowder, and snow

While I trekked into the Bronx last Saturday for work, Jordan planned a feast back at home.  Rain turned to sleet and that soon turned to snow, and before we knew it we were in the midst of a freak (October!)  snowstorm.   By the time I was back at the lake, the roads were a mess and it felt like January.  It was quite a sight – orange and yellow leaves covered in white.  My favorite part of living up here is that the backdrop makes everything extra beautiful.

brrrrrrrrrrr

J couldn’t have picked a better day for corn and potato chowder with crumbled bacon on top.  He combined two different recipes from a Hudson Valley cookbook I got him to whip up this treat.

Dinner that night was  sauteed kale over pumpkin polenta (recipe from the same Hudson Valley cookbook) but I couldn’t get a decent photo because our power was out by then (the polenta was already made, and our gas burners still worked, so the kale was sauteed by candlelight).   We spent the night in front of a raging fire, listening to tree limbs snapping outside as the foliage buckled under the weight of heavy, wet snow.   On Sunday,  after using leftover snow to flush the toilets and to water our plants, we packed up the car with all our food and drove into Manhattan to stay with family for a few days until our water and heat returned.

first post

Jordan says I need a hobby.  So this is it (for now), and it’s gonna be largely about him.

Over the years, I’ve watched him become a truly talented cook.  In the beginning, he worked his magic in a dark and dingy apartment shared with two roommates.  Then there was our first shared apartment, a small step up, with an tiny old school 1970’s (yellow) kitchen.  Now, he has a spacious, light-filled, and newly updated space, situated on a lake in the woods.  We’ve come a long way.

I’m predicting that this new setting will inspire more elaborate meals (it already has) and more dinner parties  (it already has).    I’m also predicting that it will inspire me to better document everything – something I have been doing very inadequately thus far.

one of my favorite Jordan-made desserts of all time - "frustingolo" (chocolate fig cake)

the lake. *sigh*