Sunday, November 28, 2010

Thankful for 'Sprouts

At this time of year it is traditional to be thankful for all the good things in our lives.  For us folks at Hangman Hill Road this includes being thankful for one of the best vegetables of the season, brussels sprouts.  Try them roasted, or steamed - the nutty flavor of 'sprouts is just the best.

We have just harvested the specimens shown above from our garden, and this enables us to combine this blog posting with a seasonal 'face of produce'.  A similar face appeared in one of our January 2010 blogs, but we say you can't get too many brussels sprouts!

Happy Thanksgiving

Pici Party

During our stay in Tuscany we came to appreciate pici, a pasta that is best described as "fat spaghetti".  Pici is usually served with a rich meat sauce made with wild boar meat.   Last Saturday we tried our hand at making pici, quite literally since we don't have a pasta maker.  Making the dough was very easy; we just spread some flour on the counter,  mixed in eggs and olive oil and kneaded the mixture to a soft dough. Forming the pici into strands was more challenging.  It tasted great though, when with a Bison Red Sauce using garden tomato sauce from HHR gardens.

Now, we have an appreciation for both the old world methods for making pasta and modern pasta makers.

by Martha Stewart

5 lg Eggs

1/4 c Extra-virgin olive oil; plus

1 ts Extra-virgin olive oil

Coarse salt

1/4 c Coarsely-ground cornmeal

1/4 c Grated Pecorino-Romano
Place flour on a clean work surface, forming a well in the center. Add eggs to center of well; beat with a fork. Add 1/4 cup olive oil, 1/2 cup water, and coarse salt. Use your hands to slowly mix the flour into the liquid. When dough forms and comes together, lift it out of the remaining flour on the work surface using a bench scraper. Sift the flour on the work surface; set aside. Knead dough for 2 to 3 minutes, adding a little more flour if necessary to prevent sticking. Brush top of dough with remaining teaspoon olive oil to prevent skin from forming, and cover with an inverted bowl. Let rest for 30 minutes. Sprinkle two baking sheets or platters with cornmeal. Divide dough into eight pieces. Lightly flour a work surface with a little of the reserved flour, and roll out or pat one piece of dough into a rectangle about 1/4-inch thick. Cut dough crosswise into 1/2-inch-wide strips. Transfer dough to a clean surface and, using your hands, roll each strip into a strand of spaghetti. Place on prepared baking sheets or platters. Repeat with remaining dough. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, adding salt. Cook pasta until al dente, 4 to 5 minutes. Drain, and toss with 2 tablespoons cheese. 

Monday, November 8, 2010

Monday Morning Shocker

Pictures are worth a 1,000 words, possible more on a Monday morning in early November with a forecast for rain and temperatures in the 50's.  It was supposed to snow in Bozeman, MT today, according to Michael (Sheri's brother).  We thought we had a few more days of fall before it arrived here!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

CD of the Month: Eilen Jewell - Butcher Holler

Our current favorite CD is a tribute to Loretta Lynn by Eilen Jewell.  It's called "Butcher Holler" after the town in Kentucky where Lynnn was raised.  This YouTube video captures the spirit of it, but the CD is even better.

We hope to be going to see Eilen at our local venue, the Knickerbocker Cafe in Westerly, on Friday November 19th.  Join us there if you can!

Available at Amazon and other fine outlets......

Trip to Kalamazoo, MI

This week Bruno was in Kalamazoo, Michigan for a business trip.  The Pfizer site in Kalamazoo was formerly the Upjohn company and it has a very storied history (More details...).  It was good to be back in the mid-west and to enjoy some warm late-Autumn weather, and to learn about the work that is being conducted at this manufacturing site.