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Quote of the Day: Robert Farrar Capon

October 29th, 2017

“The world does not need another cookbook, but it needs all the lovers–amateurs–it can get. It is a gorgeous old place, full of clownish graces and beautiful drolleries, and it has enough textures, tastes, and smells to keep us intrigued for more time than we have. Unfortunately, however, our response to its loveliness is not always delight: It is, far more often than it should be, boredom. And that is not only odd, it is tragic; for boredom is not neutral–it is the fertilizing principle for unloveliness.”

Robert Farrar Capon in The Supper of the Lamb





I’m very happy that winter is approaching. While I still enjoy cooking in the summer, my schedule makes it difficult to really immerse myself in cooking big meals, in trying new recipes, baking bread, etc. Summer is about quick cooking vegetables from the garden, winter is about spending hours in the kitchen, braised meats, long simmered soups…

Do you consider yourself an amateur cook? Do you enjoy the process of cooking?

Quote of the Day: Tamar Adler

October 15th, 2017

“I like asparagus charred on the grill until it is beginning to pucker; cooking greens are wonderful when allowed to get crisp and burned in places. The same is true of roasted fish and toast, both of which I find more delicious with bits of crips blackening on their edges.”

Tamar Adler in ‘An Everlasting Meal’


I always say that Mr Chiots likes his toast raw and he says I like mine burnt. In reality, I like mine with a bit of char, he likes is barely toasted. It’s personal preference of course, but I like a lot of toothsomeness to my toast and a bit of bitterness from some charred edges. He likes his barely past fresh bread. Naturally, I chuckled when I read this line the other night.

How do you like your toast?

A Book Recommendation

October 10th, 2017

“After several moments of quiet, Pino said, ‘You know, my young friend, I will be ninety years old next year, and life is still a constant surprise to me. We never know what will happen next, what we will see, and what important person will come into our life, or what important person we will lose. Life is change, constant change, and unless we are lucky enough to find comedy in it, change is nearly always a drama, if not a tragedy. But after everything, and even when the skies turn scarlet and threatening, I still believe that if we are lucky enough to be ablive, we must give thanks for the miracle of every moment of every day, no matter how flawed. And we must have faith in God, and in the universe, and in the better tomorrow, even if that faith is not always deserved.'”

-Pino Lella in Under the Scarlet Sky

I bought ‘Under the Scarlet Sky’ in April and just got around to reading it. It was riveting. We don’t hear a lot about Italy during WWII, a few bits and pieces about Communism and Mussolini. As with all wars, there are many facets and sometimes we forget that every single person involved has a story, it doesn’t matter which side they are on. This is a riveting book about about one man’s experience during in Italy during the war. When you read the book you’ll realize how much more impact his quote above has.

Have you read any good books lately that you want to recommend?

Friday Favorite: The English Garden

September 29th, 2017

Many years ago, I quit subscribing to gardening magazines. I was frustrated by all the ads and lack of good content. A few years ago, a friend recommended ‘The English Garden’ magazine. It was expensive, so I never subscribed. This summer I got a subscription as a birthday gift.



My first issue was fantastic, I read it cover to cover. It’s full of articles, real articles about beautiful gardens. The second issue is great as well, I’m super happy with this magazine. ‘Northern Gardener’ is another great publication, it’s published by the Minnesota State Horticultural Society. It’s full of great articles (some written by yours truly) and isn’t full of product placements and ads. If you’ve been missing quality gardening magazines, give one of these two options a try. They are also fantastic gift ideas for those green thumbs in your life.

What’s your favorite gardening publication?

Quote of the Day: Rosemary Verey

July 14th, 2017

“We must all examine our environment, always gaining inspiration from existing natural features; we will then enhance rather than overwhelm our surroundings.”

Rosemary Verey in Making of a Garden.

I’ve been considering this idea as I walk around my garden. Truth be told, this idea is much more important when you live on a large property and have sweeping views or lots of woodland. Our property has a few acres of cleared land, a lovely view to the coastal mountain range, and acres of woods.


It can be hard to decide what to plant to tame the areas around the house but not distract from the natural surroundings. The nice this is that I have lovely backdrops for the various gardens here at Chiot’s Run. Mature woodland edges are always lovely behind a garden, especially when they’re far enough away to not suck all the moisture and nutrients from your plants.

What things in your environment do you need to consider when planning/adapting your garden?

Reading & Watching
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About

This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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