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Roasted Chestnuts

December 17th, 2018

Many years ago we harvested chestnuts from the family property and roasted them in the oven, they were good, but it was sooooo long ago. When I saw them at the local co-op, I decided to get a few for us to try again. I roasted them in the oven last night and they were delicious!

Now I need to read up on whether we can grow chestnuts here in Maine, if so, I’ll be planting a couple of trees, not only for us but for wildlife as well.

Have you ever had roasted chestnuts? What did you think?

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?

Friday Favorite: Vegetable Soup

August 28th, 2015

Since the garden is bursting with fresh vegetables, I’ve been making pots of vegetable soup. The soup gets ladled into wide mouth pint mason jars and tucked away in the freezer, ready for quick meals come cold weather. We eat some in the summer too, last night I made a pot of minestrone and we will be enjoying that this weekend. It was filled with: potatoes, cabbage, zucchini, tomatoes, onions, garlic, celery, green beans, and herbs from the garden.
curried broccoli soup
I make soup with whatever vegetables are ready to harvest, curried broccoli, tomato, vegetable, etc. It’s nice to know that there are instant meals ready for fall days when I’d rather spend every drop of sunlight working in the garden. I also love using up all those bits of vegetable peels to make vegetable stock for all these soups. I feel like I’m making the most of the bounty of summer.

What’s your favorite kind of soup?

Quote of the Day: Tamar Adler

July 19th, 2015

“But there is dignity in allowing oneself to keep clear about what is good, and it is what I think of when I hear the term “good taste.” Whether things were ever simpler than they are now, or better if they were, we can’t know. We do know that people have always found ways to eat and live well, whether on boiling water or bread or beans, and that some of our best eating hasn’t been our most foreign or expensive or elaborate, but quite plain and quite familiar. And knowing that is probably the best way to cook, and certainly the best way to live.”

Tamar Adler from An Everlasting Meal: Cooking with Economy and Grace

Recently, we started having Friday night dinners at our home. We have an open invitation to the first 6 people that RSVP. They bring sides and wine, we provide the main dish. Mostly, I make simple food: meatballs, meatloaf, carnitas, etc. It’s a way for us to see the people we’d love to visit with and empty our freezer of all of our home raised pork. The food is simple and delicious, the conversation is better than the food.

meatballs
It’s all about people and relationships, we feel that happens best over a delicious meal, especially over a simple meal. There’s no much fretting on my part, nothing that takes a long time to cook or takes prep while everyone else is eating.  It’s perfect, we’ve been enjoying the evenings and so have the people in attendance.

What’s your favorite simple meal to prepare? 

Quote of the Day: Julia Child

March 1st, 2015

“Cooking is just as creative and imaginative an activity as drawing, or wood carving, or music.”

Julie Child

food 1 (1)
The other day I was eating breakfast and trying to decide what to make for dinner. I’m definitely not one of those come up with a menu at the beginning of the week and stick to it type of cooks. Cooking is one of my creative outlets.
food 1
food 3
I like to keep a well stocked pantry and buy what’s on sale and what looks fresh and delicious when I’m at the farmers market or the local co-op. Then I plan my meals depending on what I have in the fridge, what needs eaten up, what is in season, or what I feel like eating.

food 2 (1)
food 2
food 3 (1)
Most of my meals are quick to make and very simple, though I do like to spend all day in the kitchen if I get the opportunity. As with many people, there are a few things that we really enjoy and they grace our plates more often than other things: omelets, fajitas, stir-fry, soup, seafood, steak marsala, salad, and curry, along with a few other favorites.
food 4 (1)
food 4
There’s not much I enjoy more than coming up with something delicious after a quick look in the fridge/freezer/pantry. I am always trying to expand my horizons and learn to new foods/techniques along with coming up with new ideas for our favorite meals. This month I’m planning on trying to make sushi and spring rolls, we shall see how they turn out and if they end up on our favorites rotation.

Are you keen on learning to cook anything new? What are some of your favorite go-to meals?

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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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