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As the smell of Thanksgiving feasting fills the kitchen, we reflect what we are we are thankful for; our health, each other, our families, and our wonderful guests and patrons. Tomorrow there are two entertainment venues to enjoy : our friend Dave from Tender Land Home is sponsoring a screening of “Babe” at the Shandaken Theatrical Society in Phoenicia, Friday the 26th at 7PM or join baritone Kerry Henderson and pianist Babette Heirholzer for an evening celebrating the English art song. The program includes George Butterworth’s haunting song cycle, “A Shropshire Lad” , New Zealand composer Douglas Lilburn’s “Sings Harry” and Ralph Vaughan William’s ever popular “The Vagabond”. Friday, 26th November, 7:30PM,St Gregory’s Church, 2578 Route 212, Woodstock, NY. Small donations appreciated for both.
We have been cooking and then cooking some more. Our new menu is loaded with comfort foods. Braising, stewing, brining, marinating, sauteeing, roasting, smoking, baking- melding layers of flavors to satisfy, even in the coldest of winter. Beginning tomorrow, along with traditional Thanksgiving fare, this menu is not to be missed. Come feast all winter long.
The 11th annual Woodstock Film festival held in a variety of venues is September 29th through October 3rd.
The Leaping Trout Project showing is being hosted by the Arts Upstairs (60 Main Street, Phoenicia), from Sept 18 to October 11. The show will mark the first time the entire 27-piece Leaping Trout collection will be on public display in one place at one time. An opening night gallery party kicks off the art happening Saturday, Sept 18, 6-10PM. Bring a friend!
But don’t forget, you can have one of these leaping beauties by being the successful bidder in the on-line auction and live auction, to be held at the Arts Upstairs gallery on Sunday, October 10, 5pm. Own a piece of local Catskills art and benefit Trout Unlimited. too!
My mother brought the seeds back from the garden of her cousin because they were the best tomatoes, huge, the size of a softball, deep red, juicy and delicious. She has grown them for years and faithfully saved the seeds unlike me, who flits from variety to variety. This year, though, I saved seeds from what we call the French tomato for planting next year. In researching how to, I found that tomato seeds are viable for ten years if stored in a cool, dry place.
Choose a ripe, heirloom tomato, the best one.
Cut it across the equator, squeeze the seeds, pulp, and juice out into a small cup and cover with water. After about three days, a white, orange, greenish mold will form on the surface. This means that the gelatinous coating on the seeds has dissolved. Scrape off and discard the mold and any seeds that are floating. You want the seeds sitting at the bottom of the cup. Refill the cup with water, and carefully pour off any remaining pulp, repeat until the water is clear.
Spread the rinsed seeds onto a paper plate or paper towel lined plate that will wick the water away from the seeds so they dry fast and won’t get moldy. Once dry, put them in a labeled envelope, baggie, or other container and store in a cool, dry place.
On our plates this week we have sweet yellow and red corn, rattlesnake pole beans, ratatouille, and broccoli rabe harvested or made from harvest of the garden. Talk about fresh. We love this. For specials, we’ll take the never ending cherry tomatoes mix with sautéed garlic, rosemary, black olives, and capers over pan-fried fresh local trout drizzled with balsamic vinegar reduction and crispy pancetta. We will also make a crust of black pepper, parsley, crushed fennel seed, and mustard seed on baked halibut over pernod cream with brunoise of onion, carrot and fennel.
Phoenicia artist Anique Taylor has a showing August 20th – September 19, 2010 at the Monmouth Museum on the Brookdale Community College Campus in Lincroft, NJ. If you are nearby, you could chat with her at the artist’s gallery talk on Wednesday, September 15, 2010 7:00-8:00pm or you could see her work at her studio in Phoenicia or at the gallery Art Upstairs on Main Street. Tell her we say Hello! More info? Call (732) 747-2266
We thought it would be nice to be able to relax in the morning with a hot drink, warm scones and a piece of fruit. In our rooms there is a mini refrigerator, coffee maker, a microwave and waffle robes to do just that. The scones are buttery biscuits with dried apricot, golden raisin, and ginger or chocolate chip, chocolate, cinnamon, and pecan or dried cherries, currants and oats.
Each year we await the katydid chorus-thinking this will be the year that we’ll notice the first chirp they make. It never happens. Suddenly one night we hear them in full concert and wonder how many nights they’ve been singing. We do recall they typically arrive around the first of August but we noticed them two weeks ago. Everything seems to be off kilter this summer. The magnolia tree kept putting forth blooms all spring and into mid-summer as did the wisteria. I have never had tomatoes from our garden in early July but for this summer. Growing up in Colorado, I had not seen a firefly, or heard a katydid. The night time cacophony is truly amazing as is the wonder of fireflies. One night after visiting Peter’s folks in Saugerties, we stopped to watch a field of tall grasses lit with thousands of fireflies. It was a feast for the eyes.