Monday, January 31, 2011

Enjoy in wool socks ...

Disclosure: I have somehow managed to sprain my neck (am convinced it has something to do with inhuman cold) and am writing slightly … medicated. Off we go!


Inhuman cold ... deceptively pretty ... and cold ... mostly cold ...inhuman ...

For the last two weeks dear readers, I have been existing in an icebox (in two provinces!). No, no … an icebox would be balmy ... I have been existing in a piercing, biting, nose sticking together, eyes barely blinking cold that the glaciers would be jealous of. I mean, temperatures have reached minus forty. Minus forty. Plus … windchill. I shudder …

I ask you, how is any rational person supposed to participate in anything other than burying themselves under a huge duvet, steaming mug of spiked tea in hand, peeking out of said duvet and staring at the frostbitten windows, suspicious of a cold relentless draft you know is coming from somewhere and cursing the frost god’s.

No? Just me? Maybe …

All this to say dear readers, for the last two weeks, my culinary adventures have consisted of hibernating in our home in Montreal with a short hiatus of hibernating at Germain in Toronto sprinkled with a brief stint discussing a Philippine delicacy of field rats (big ones, which have to be hunted, skinned and deep fried and served piping hot with a spicy sauce …) with Ariel, who works at Germain and sent me home with two of his mothers recipes (not for field rats) which I will make once I thaw.

This brings us (somehow) to what I love to make the most, on the coldest of days. To what I equate to a big, warm and comforting hug.

Broths, dear readers. Many, many broths …

Chicken broths. Veal broths. Chicken and veal broths. 

Not quite chicken but was the only fowl flouncing around...in the heat...back when there was some...


Veal ... thank you dear ...

What I wanted to share with you today is venison broth but plans were foiled when I called my butcher and he did not have any. “Call me on Monday” he rasps with heavily accented voice over the din in his shop. Given said circumstance, I share with you today a beautiful chicken and veal broth recipe. A simple, soothing afternoon kitchen adventure, in thick wool socks. Temperature outside: minus 30.


Because of the nature of broth and the few ingredients involved you must purchase the best ingredients possible to experience the broth bliss that has rendered mankind warm and cosy in many kitchens. The most well fed and cared for chicken and veal. The ripest tomatoes, the most sweet and fragrant carrots and aromatic celery stalks (yes that’s right, fragrant and aromatic). Carrots and celery are commonly peddled for their crunch but dear readers, next time you buy a bunch of fresh beautiful carrots and leafy dirty celery, I invite you to stick your nose right in there and inhale … trust me …(and don’t worry about any strange glances you may get … speaking from experience here …). The rest is simple …


Time to dish.

Chicken and veal broth

Here is what you need ...

  • Chicken necks, backs, a foot or two …
  • Veal bones (some with marrow)
  • Ripe tomato
  • Fragrant and aromatic (and dirty) carrots and celery
  • Sprig of parsley
  • Sea salt
  • Whole peppercorns

Here is what to do ...

In a big, heavy pot add all the above mentioned ingredients and bring to a slight boil. Slight because the ingredients are delicate and you do not want a rolling boil to start breaking them apart and clouding your broth. Which brings us to the next point. Do not stir. Not even once. Resist the temptation and you will be rewarded with beauty. Once slight boil has been achieved, reduce the heat so your both comes to a simmer and then watch it lovingly and gingerly skim off any foam that accumulates. Once that is done dear readers, leave it alone for a few hours and then enjoy the bounty of your "labor".

Serve yourself a warm bowl of broth with a little meat from the chicken and some fresh parsley and dig out that veal marrow to serve on a small piece of crusty bread.

Enjoy in wool socks.


6 comments:

  1. Sounds exquisite. Simplicity is beauty...

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  2. So sorry about your neck...and you don't sound too drugged.

    I guess I have been indoors so much with my stint of bad health I have not noticed the cold so much. But your exquisite broth looks amazing.

    Love how your recipes so far are the basics to excellent cuisine and all made with loving hands and fine (dirty) ingredients!

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  3. Frank: Thank you! I could not agree more. I picked up the venison bones this afternoon and have another pot simmering on the stove ...

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  4. Evelyne: Thanks! It does seem to be the theme doesn't it :)A bientot!

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  5. Venison broth was beautiful. After broth was ready, I took the meat out, quickly made a barbecue sauce with lots of Mount Gay rum, slathered it on the meat and bones and roasted for ten minutes in a 475 degree oven...supper was yummy ...

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