Tag: French fingerlings

dinner, April 13, 2010

Little more than a week after I had come upon Strauss Brothers veal chops, which we had enjoyed in this meal, I discovered that the same excellent producers also supplied tasty young lamb.   I included four of their small rib chops in this dinner.

  • lamb chops, pan-grilled and finished with oil, thyme and a sprinkle of lemon, from Strauss Brothers, purchased at Garden of Eden;  accompanied by some kale from Bodhitree Farm at the Union Square Greenmarket, sauteed in a bit of oil which had first warmed two lightly-bruised whole garlic cloves;  and French Fingerlings from Norwich Meadows Farms, oven-roasted with rosemary leaves
  • shelled almonds
  • wine:  a medium French red, from Roussillon,  Le Vignes de Bila-Haut, Côtes du Roussillon Villages 2008, M. Chapoutier, from K & D wines

dinner, April 3, 2010

I generally avoid preparing or eating veal (for the expense;  the problematic ethics attached to most of its sources; and the fact that, unless sympathetically prepared, it can end up tasting pretty bland).  It’s probably been years since I’ve had it in my kitchen, but with the memory of one particular recipe I’d not been able to dispose of, I was tempted to give it a try when I came across an attractive package at Garden of Eden.

It enclosed two small veal loin chops described as “natural, untethered, no growth hormones or artificial ingredients”, and identified as the product of a family firm in southern Wisconsin, Strauss Brothers.  The price per pound was modest, especially considering the almost fabled luxury of the product.  Moreover, the chops themselves were smallish, and that makes sense to us.

Free-range veal?  I spent a lot of time on the dairy farms of our Wisconsin relatives when I was young, where I wondered where and why each cute newborn spotted calf disappeared before we could become very attached to them, so naturally I was intrigued, even if I knew the Strauss Brothers’ critters hadn’t really spent much time on those advertised ranges.

I didn’t go with the recipe I had in mind when I bought the chops, but rather one which absolutely could not be more simple and easy, and which would surely convince any skeptic of the potential robustness of veal.

  • Taralli Pugliesi (Finocchio) from Puglia Sapori purchased at Garden of Eden
  • drink:  Ricard and water
  • Veal Loin Chops with Balsamico, or two seasoned chops browned 3-4 minutes each side (once the pan and a bit of oil coating it has gotten very hot), over medium-high heat, the chops removed and allowed to rest five minutes, then each drizzled with a teaspoon of good Balsamic vinegar; accompanied by French Fingerlings (Solanum tuberosum) oven-roasted with rosemary; and small varicolored oven-roasted carrots, both vegetables from Norwich Meadows Farms in Norwich, New York, purchased at the Union Square Greenmarket
  • cheese and pears:  two Basques, Garroxta and Istarra, served with rosemary bread from Bobolink Dairy at the Union Square Greenmarket; Bosc Pears from Migliorelli Farm, also in the Greenmarket
  • wine:  Austrian, Blauer Zweigelt 2007 Weingut Anita und Hand Nitthaus, Burgenland, from Appellation Wines

dinner, December 25, 2009


I had originally intended to finish with a quince purée the small rack of venison I had gotten from Ottomanelli this week, but I had been misinformed about the availability of quince this late in December.   Learning the truth only the day before yesterday I quickly decided to use pears, one of the alternatives suggested by the recipe (in “D’Artagnan’s Glorious Game Cookbook“).

I had begun marinating the meat the day before that, in olive oil and crushed black pepper, along with Greenmarket rosemary, sage, and bay leaves (yes, I bought a bay branch at the greenmarket!).

Yesterday, just before searing the rack and putting it in the oven for 20 minutes, I made the sauce, chopping up firm Bartlett and Bouree Bosc pears and cooking them until tender with carmelized sugar and a combination of good Spanish red wine vinegar and stock which had been greatly reduced.  The pear sauce was then puréed and kept warm.  When the ribs were finished I separated them and served each portion on top of a helping of the purée, with a good portion of concentrated sauce infused with demi-glace spooned onto the meat itself and flowing onto the fruit.

The potatoes and the kale were both brought home from the Greenmarket in recent days.  I found the kale in fact in the farmer’s by-then-almost-emptied wooden box, still frosted with the snow, now slightly crispy, from last week’s storm.

We had been listening to Bach’s Christmas Oratorio for much of the afternoon, but, not wanting to carry the traditional  holiday playlist too far, just as we sat down to dinner we started listening to Bernstein’s “Candide“.

So for now, in this small place, in this best of all possible, possible, possible worlds: 

  • smoked eel from the Greenmarket (Blue Moon Fish, Mattituck, Long Island) served on a plate with lemon wedges and a salad of arugula, endive, chopped Sicilian capers, chopped shallots, horseradish, crème fraiche, lemon and olive oil; accompanied by slices of Kara’s flax bread from Garden of Eden
  • rack of California venison on pear purée, sauced with a sweet and sour demi-glace-infused concentrate; accompanied by rosemary-roasted French Fingerling potatoes;  and Winterbor kale (“really juicy after frosts”) from Keith’s Farm in Westtown, New York
  • thin slice of pound cake with a scoop of Ronnybrook vanilla ice cream, sprinkled with chopped candied grapefruit from Garden of Eden
  • wines:  wine:  Ferrari-Carano Fumé Blanc 2008 with the first course, and Ridge York Creek California Zinfandel 2008, and Bogle Vinyards Old Vine Zinfandel 2007, both from Phillipe Wine


Both yesterday’s lunch and this morning’s breakfast continued the holiday, or at least, winter, theme.   In the afternoon on December 25 I roasted some locally-grown Greenmarket chestnuts in a perforated pan on the top of our 1931 Magic Chef. This morning I spread some truly fantastic pumpkin preserves from Marlow & Daughters on some more of the flax bread, buttered this time.