Sunday, November 30, 2008

What I've Been Cooking

We're still getting used to me leaving at 6am and not returning until 7pm on a good night, and I'm not even an actual principal yet. To manage this new life together, busier than last winter in Paris, we have divided eating into parts: 2 meals a week that I cook, the one that Liam cooks, and a weekly date to Franny's to keep us inspired.

After days of apple pie with cheddar cheese for breakfast, we're back in Brooklyn and ready to

Recent favorites for me have been Lemony Chickpea Stirfry and the more wintery Kale and Mushrooms with Creamy Polenta.

I am planning my holiday baking with the nouveau classics: pepita brittle, chocolate caramels with fleur de sel, and spoon cookies stuffed into tiny boxes for co-workers and friends (these long hours bring us closer).

Next week we'll have a few friends over for a Mexican-themed brunch spanning the country with a chilaquiles verde, huevos rancheros, and some milk-fudge candies I just read about from Puebla.

Trying to keep it real this winter, or at least not as far from our previous lives as it feels.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Pumpkin Fondue

After busy weeks of work, a new job, a new life and a funeral, it seemed time for some comfort food.

I read a description in Gourmet of Pumpkin Fondue and then tossed the magazine.

There I was at the Grand Army Plaza Farmer's Market re-thinking the plan - which is how we ended up with two decorative pumpkins rather than a sugar (what I wanted) or a 7lb one (called for in the recipe).

I picked up gruyere and raclette (there's something about emmental I just don't like), a baguette and some cream. Like Riechl, I found myself wondering how all of these delicious ingredients would go together.

Liam asked, "why are we putting it in a pumpkin?"

They were so cute - even when one look at their yellow flesh confirmed my suspicion that these weren't the best eating pumpkins. I toasted the baguette and defrosted vegetable stock. I grated in some nutmeg and then the cheese in a pile bigger than the two pumpkins, and then I stuffed them.

They emerged from the oven burnished and oozing. While the flesh didn't allow me to scoop it out into a bowl of melting comfort, we dipped our bread pieces into the shell and scooped until we could scoop no more.

Who needs a Raclette when you have an American pumpkin?