October 13, 2011

Warm Dishes for Cool Weather

When temperatures start to drop, it is the perfect time to prepare hearty dishes like the French family classic, pot-au-feu.   

400 grams top rib of beef
400 grams top leg of beef or a lean part of the shoulder
1 bone with marrow
4 carrots
4 turnips
1 leek
1 celery stalk
1 onion
1 bouquet garni (parsley, thyme and bayleaf)
Salt and pepper

Tell your butcher you need the meat and a large marrow bone to prepare a pot-au-feu.

Place the meat in a large pot.  Add 2 liters of cold water.  Bring the water to a boil.  Let it boil for 15 minutes.  Skim the water regularly and remove the brown foam released by the meat until the brown foam is gone.  The goal is to produce a clear broth.

Wash, peel and chop all the vegetables. 

Add the bouquet garni, fresh garlic, chopped vegetables, and marrow bone to the pot.  You can stick the cloves in the onion so they are easier to remove at the end of cooking.

Bring the pot back to a boil and then turn the heat down to simmer on low heat for about 1 hour and 30 minutes.

The pot-au-feu can be served two ways.  First, serve the clear broth as a soup with toasted bread.  Next, serve the meat and vegetables along with mustard, cornichons (pickles), and rock salt.  Spread the bone marrow on toast and season with salt and pepper.  Be sure to prepare enough meat in your pot-au-feu so you can also serve the meat cold in a salad or prepare meatballs the next day.

Join the WICE cooking group, led by our gracious (and easy-to-follow) instructor Françoise Meunier, on Wednesday, October 19 to make a delicious Chicken a la Normande (with farm-raised chicken) and, of course, a classic apple tart to finish the Normandy autumn meal in perfect style. For more information click here.

The class learns ... and then eats!