Monday, August 31, 2009

why i love the cod cont'd...

1. a 200 lb tuna caught by b. in the morning, then served sashimi style and also barbyqued steak style by dinner time. with plenty left over.
2. hootenannies.
3. chloe playing ukulele and singing cat stevens.
4. portuguese style chowder. (aka, butter and fish, including cod and pollock, which b. also caught)
5. a somewhat dramatic, but not threatening hurricane.
6. several found 1960's "pic" mosquito repellent coils.
7. newly discovered kettle pond.
8. another hobo dinner. just as good as last year.
9. new rafts that are kind of like a lazy boy. but in water. thanks stop n shop.
10. charisse. unbelievably great sausage.
11. an unruly, but totally entertaining squirrel.
12. cast iron skillets and pancakes. who knew?
13. beans is a water dog apparently.
14. the crazy, spooky, ghost-infested cottage that i will be seeing again next year. hopefully...

Saturday, August 29, 2009

why i love the cod cont'd.

pick a coffee cup:

pick a book:

water the flowers:

pick a chair

head to the beach:

do some shellin' at low tide:

build a beach fire:

and the end:

Thursday, August 27, 2009

closing time

while this has been the summer of cheever, it has also been the summer of biographies and memoirs. this was a gift from my dear v.
i've always enjoyed queenan's essays for their brutal and somewhat unreliable prose. but after finishing this book, i may not read anything by him again without a healthy dose of cynicism. while the writers of memoirs re: cruel and alcoholic parents have been part of my personal pantheon for years, i just can't admit queenan into this lauded circle. he writes much like a petulant child, angry at some points then whimsical at others. his vitriol for his parents (and deservedly so for his father) seems to wax nostalgic when it suits him. it also reads like several essays grouped together; he repeats stories, anecdotes and moments, sometimes living differently in another chapter.
his anger is palpable. and rightfully so. but i guess after reading this book, i was left thinking, why did you write this?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

the cod

packing my i come!

the perfect steak

via Brooklyn Based. i've always had an issue with meats. cooking them, i mean. i do have my grandmother's awesome cast iron skillet and sometimes my steaks are perfection, other times it's like i've cooked my shoe. i thought these were some handy and straightforward tips from brooklyn's most famous butcher, tom mylan. i totally agree about the fat. i would put butter on butter:

Butcher Tom Mylan completed his long tenure at Marlow & Daughters/Sons/Diner this Saturday. He’s on to the next episode, but thanks to our special access (Tom and our Senior Editor, Annaliese Griffin, will marry this fall!), you’ll find his meat wisdom here at Brooklyn Based in our occasional new series, Ask the Butcher. Email us with questions for future columns.

Dear Tom,
I love steak, but I never seem to cook it as competently as they do in a restaurant. My current method involves searing it on both sides and then putting it in the oven for about five minutes. The problem is in the searing. I can never get it crispy (is that even the right word?) on the outside, while keeping it nice and bloody in the middle. I can’t even get the crispy outside when I cook it that way thoroughly. Can you please describe the right way to cook a nice piece of steak rare? Also, what cut should I be buying?–Judy M.

Judy, it’s complicated. Variables like: how thick your steak is, what kind of pan you use and even how good (or bad) your stove are end up huge factors in cooking a delicious steak at home. That said, I’ll make as simple as possible for you:

Step one: Buy good meat. Pay a little more and get properly raised and well hung (dry aged) beef from mature animals (over 25 months old). The cut is not as important as the quality of the meat but you can tailor the cut to your desires. If you like more fat, buy a rib steak. If you like a lean and beefy cut, get a flat iron. Feeding a lot of people? Get a porterhouse.

Step two: Treat it right. When you get your steak home take it out of the package and let it be free. Salt and pepper it liberally and let it sit out for an hour or so before you think of cooking it. This will insure that the steak is warm and thus will cook evenly and not be overdone one the outside while staying cold in the middle. Last thing is to pat the steak with a paper towel to remove the moisture. A wet steak steams instead of fries when you put it in a pan. The number one key to a good crust on the outside is a dry steak.

Step three: Cooking, well done. Before you start, get your skillet very hot to help set up the beginnings of a sear. Cast iron works best for cheapest. Skip the raised grill pans unless it really important to you to get grill lines on your steaks, otherwise you’re just missing out on flavorful crust. Right before you throw your steak in the pan, toss in a few tablespoons each of butter and olive oil. This is a key to a pan steak on a New York City apartment oven: you don’t fry a steak you frrrry a steak. Using lots of cooking fat is key to that great crispy outside but without it seeming dry and weird. Fat tastes good. Use lots of fat. Lastly, you can skip the oven finish unless the steak is thicker than, say, 1 1/4 inches. Test for doneness by feel (Google it) or by sticking the steak with a paring knife and holding it to your bottom lip. If the knife is lukewarm pull the steak and let it rest for 5-10 minutes. The result (with a bit of practice) will be a perfectly cooked medium rare steak.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

i think this is kind of cool...

i wish every town did this.
hat tip: wc. otherwise known as godihateyourband and rrthur?