This is a very pleasant & simple dish. I called it Forestière because my grandfather used to call anything garnished with mushroom Forestière —meaning of the forest. Though the porcinis mushrooms are not wild & neither were all the mushrooms my grandpa used!
Pan fry the cod (4/5 mns each side) with a dollop of clarified butter. Reheat the small new potatoes cut half length – they are already boiled – in the pan with the fish, add a little fat if needed. The fresh green beans had also been parboiled and will be added to the sautéed small porcini mushrooms. I sautéed the porcini with olive oil until crispy & towards the end added the persillade —chopped parsley & garlic.
Once you have removed the fish & potatoes from the pan melt a dollop of unsalted clarified butter in the same pan, with low heat under the pan to keep the butter from browning, add the juice of one freshly squeezed lemon, salt & pepper to taste; use this mixture to coat you fish once on the plate. Voilà! Satisfying, quick & healthy.
Last Tuesday we set out to surprise Douglas Rothschild while he was on his epic walk from Troy (N.Y) to Ithaca (N.Y). I will tell you more about this event in a later post, but Matvei Yankelevich had found the perfect spot for Pierre and I to perform our surprise intervention and then have a picnic aperitif. The secret rendez-vous was fixed by Anna Moschovakis who was with Douglas filming & recording the walk for a documentary film project. The spot was in the Hoxie Gorge, just south of Cortland, N.Y. There was a place to hide, and then a place to relax next to a meandering stream where we sipped a beautiful blueberry wine just purchased up the road at Cherry Knoll Farm by Douglas & Anna. Usually I don’t like these wines, but this one was particularly good. Matvei had also spotted chanterelles and I had the honor of picking & keeping them! What a beautiful omelet we had for breakfast the next morning at the lovely home of poet Lori Anderson-Moseman & Tom Moseman in Ithaca, where poet friend Matthew Klane was also visiting.
The recipe is simple:
I never wash chanterelles, but simply remove the dirt/sand with a soft brush or a soft, slightly damp cloth.
Cut them into two or four pieces depending on size.
With a fork beat the eggs vigorously (2 per person).
add salt + pepper to taste
Heat olive oil with a dollop of butter in a pan, add the your chanterelles and cook over medium heat until soft, then add some garlic and parsley, toss for a few minutes and remove from the pan.
Wipe the pan clean and and return it to the stove with more olive oil and another dollop of butter. When it is really hot pour the egg batter into the pan. Begin to stir the eggs while letting them coagulate some and mixing it in with the more liquid part. When semi soft add the Chanterelles, & mix them in. If you have a very good pan and le tour de main —that is, the knack for it — loosen the edges by shaking the pan and make the omelet curl on itself, slide it off at an angle onto a warm plate, let it settle for 30 seconds to a minute, and fold it. If you need a little help use a spatula & fold over and slide it on a plate.
Also, before eating mushrooms you have gathered yourself make sure they are edible! You can find some info here. Once a friend told me that it is a good idea to save a little piece of the mushroom in case there is a problem. We had been totally reassured by Matvei who is a connoisseur, as I am more familiar with the Pyrenean ones I wanted to make sure we were not dealing with false chanterelles. Anyhow, we ate them and we are here to tell the tale. We had our omelet for breakfast, but it can make a great lunch and can be accompanied by my simple salad (video here) and a little glass of light red wine!
Faro, farro, emmer, triticum dicocum or simply put: wheat! Supposedly one of the first wheat domesticated in the Near East. No time to get into its history but it makes a nice crunchy salad. I soaked it for a few hours, cooks it in water, drained it when soft, and added the above ingredients. The ingredients were chosen by default, that is what was available in my fridge. You can get as creative as you want and add things like: nuts, raisins, onions, radishes, peppers, shrimp, chicken, duck — o, yes, duck would be excellent! Just try it.
This is a great dish to take along at pot luck and picnics because it doesn’t get soggy. Bon Appetit! I’ll be back sooner that later with more! I have been busy. Merci to stick around.
I don’t eat much pasta but before a gig I like to have an early dinner that will give enough energy to be able to sing three hours later and pasta & lox is perfect for me.
So on Monday before going to our gig at The Local 269 with Pierre Joris & Michael Bisio — snippet of concert here— I made us a salmon, scallion & fusili express dish. My friend Dawn Clements —who is opening another drawing extraordinaire at The Boiler today— had given me a delicious piece of lox from the Acme Smoked Fish store in Brooklyn. It took me 14 minutes to make the dish including cooking the pasta:
Cook pasta al dente.
Cut pieces of lox.
In a pan bring one cup of heavy cream to a boil and add scallions cut at a bias for one minute. Combine it all.
Add a little salt, a lot of fresh ground pepper & shavings of Parmesan cheese….
Voilà c’est tout!
Beside the drawing concert series there is another series in constant progress and below are 2 pieces Also in serious progress the Augustus Saint Gaudens script with new discoveries on Bernard Saint Gaudens his father, and a dead line coming up very soon for the script.
I am now in my birthland to gather more info on Augustus Saint-Gaudens (1848-1907) whose father, Bernard Saint-Gaudens, was born in the village of Aspet in 1816. I will not go into details about it now, but briefly want to share yesterday’s photographs, impressions & menu.
I left Luchon —family hometown where I am based— around 9:30am, a lovely & very unusual cloud was ornamenting the mountain. It looked like a natural pre-Xmas decoration or rather like a true pagan one! I drove away from the high peaks towards the luscious Pyreneans piedmont. The cloudy skies cleared and revealed an intense deep blue that I have only seen here. I drove what I think is the exact same road Augustus Saint-Gaudens traveled in December 1897 to journey from his father’s birth village, Aspet, to Salies-du-Salat where the dad grew up from age 6 till around 16. The distance between the villages is about 20 kilometers. Except for the asphalted road, the landscape remains identical to the one Augustus admired over 100 years ago. There were no other cars than mine for several miles, no modern constructions, the few farm houses looked over 100 years old and the stunning panorama of the high peaks in the background was certainly unchanged!
I arrived in Salies-du-Salat around 10:30 am. A phone call to an elder resident pointed me to Bernard Saint–Gaudens’ family house. Despite some remodeling, the shape of the house/street remains pretty much the same as they do on the picture Augustus Saint-Gaudens took in December 1897. In the background, and from far, the 11th century tower and the 14th century church ruins are also the same, except for the tree in front of the tower.
Seeing Bernard’s house in the sharp winter colors & the crisp, clear Pyrenean air left me exalted. I got back on the road to meet a long time friend for lunch at Auberge Beaurivage, an excellent Basque restaurant that I was very much looking forward to try —the chef is a true Basque man — as we are only 2 hours away from the Basque country. As time was limited we had the menu du jour, though chef Philippe Picabea offers a selection of original creations as well as traditional Basque dishes that people drive many miles for.
I had a very fresh, perfectly dressed & copious “salade composées” that included green beans, cucumbers, hard boiled eggs, greens, plenty of onions & tomatoes. As an entrée my friend and her son had filet mignon with a Roquefort sauce. I had a pan-fried lemon sole with a moist and tasty potato & artichoke gratin. For dessert came a large rectangular plate that contained an espresso coffee surrounded by 4 mini desserts: a small cup of light rice pudding, a mini chocolate crème brûlée, a slice of cherry gateau basque, and a tiny cannellé. Price of the menu is €18. Totally worth it and compared to what I had so far on this trip this is rather cheap and one of my best meal. We had no wine as we both had to work in the afternoon. Voilà! Off again to the town of Saint-Gaudens for more work.