I find so often with the slow, intentional labors of love, the pieces start to fall into place and exceed even my obsessive planning. This gathering centered around a bird. Beyond the decision to confit a bird (a first for me), I felt a different sort of reverence for this bird. I didn't just pick up a plasticized cut of meat from the neon-lit cooler. Our friend waited in the cold (this is one part of hunting I do not understand), hunted this bird, plucked its painterly feathers and [mostly] cleaned it (Josh, you could have been a bit more thorough, but we'll allow it). We foraged winter branches, berries and greens from our dog's happy place, which became a centerpiece backdrop for the pheasant feathers. We set the table, dimmed the lights, and the dining room felt pleasantly small and cozy as it brimmed with friends new and old and laughter.
Every year, the Rustbelt Farmer's family throws a chili cook off for Mama Pattison's birthday. My award-winning chili entry is an in-depth recipe, to say the least, but go big or go home, right? Next year, I'm throwing two jars of salsa and a chicken in a crockpot and calling it done. So here you have it... quite possibly the only chili recipe you'll ever find on this blog. Where do you stand? Are you pro chili? Do you have any award-winning chili secrets?
The best part of investing the time and effort (which is really less than you think) in this Boeuf Bourguignon recipe is it keeps on feeding you. From our fancy New Year's Eve table, to watching Fargo on New Year's Day (it felt appropriately cold outside to revisit that classic film) and a few days after that, we had warm bowls of comforting stew to nourish us and torture the dog with its aroma (poor baby, but no wine broth for her).
After 75 years at your table, Dietz & Watson is inviting you to their table. They're partnering with the nation’s top culinary talent to create ten curated, local dining experiences across the country, and Pittsburgh is one of the stops! Chef Justin Severino will be serving up a meal much like this one, and you can join.
When we escaped to the cabin in the woods, my goal was to cook for the sake of cooking, to enjoy the process and to revel in slow meals. Since the cabin kitchen was on the smaller side, and since our plan was to sequester ourselves in coziness, I had to be more intentional, more prudent. Each ingredient needed to flow from one meal to the next. Tacos are a great decoy for leftovers.
Next up: Lunch from my Cabin Menu for Two. Little did I know how fitting this recipe would be for our stay at the Beaverdam Cabin. Founders James “Jimmie” Stoughton and his sister, Louise Maust, were known for their delectable chicken salad sandwiches and angel food cake.
In honor of Black History Month, this is my own humble nod of gratitude for the history the black community built and enriched. This is my own nod of gratitude toward the immigrants, who like my grandmother's family came to America and worked harder than anyone, planting their traditions into American soils. It's a nod to those who were here long before any of us, who valued the many resources this beautiful chunk of land had to offer.