Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Autumn Bowls


When the leaves had started to fall and the days were shortening, my mother would take us out to the woods. We would gather twigs, and vibrant oak leaves, starry mosses, mushrooms, acorn pipes, and shiny chestnuts. We would lay them all gently in baskets we had brought, and when we had had enough we would go home.

There my mother would spread the garden table with newspapers, and she would allow us each to select a bowl from the cellar shelf. These we would fill with fresh smelling, moist earth from the garden. We would stamp it down with the palms of our hands and on top we would build our own autumn gardens. Where elves could live, and gnomes. And if we were in luck, spiders too.

When we had finished, the bowls would get pride of place in the windowsill and on the sideboard and on the coffee table. As I remember it, we all won prizes: most original, most beautiful, most varied.

But I don’t think any of us cared much for that. The bowl was the prize.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Appels, appels, appels

Van onze boom in Frankrijk kwamen tonnen appels, en zo kreeg ik de kans om alle recepten voor appeltaart te proberen, waarop ik mijn hand kon leggen.

Via C. kwam deze me onder de ogen. Beslist één van de lekkerste. En hij doet wat hij belooft: krokante korst, gaar deeg en rins-zoete appelen.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Green Cabbage Stew

This is a wonderful wintry dish:

Fry smoked bacon in its own lard, or in a little vegetable oil, until it has given off its own fat and it is crisp. Fry chopped onion in the fat until soft and brown, with curry powder to taste. Add a pressed clove of garlic and chopped (green) cabbage and stew until softening. Add peeled slices of apple of a tart-sweet variety. Cook until all ingredients are done. Season with salt and pepper.

The secret is the saltiness of the bacon combined with the sweetness of the apple. Raisins would do the same trick!

Delicious with potatoes boiled in the skin.