Thursday, February 24, 2011

Hearty Food, Me Hearty

This is a painting. If I could paint, this is the one I'd do.
That vegetal cumulus cloud back there, and the planks of cured meat in front. Color, contrast, composition. Lighting — pale, wintry light on the day before it might (but probably won't) snow here in suburban tract-home (mid-century! that counts for cool) Marin County. Pure art.
Yet it was lunch, and we ate it.
My friend Zoomie confessed to embracing winter and not fighting it. "It just wears you out and it doesn't change the weather one iota." Agreed.
So for the past few days we have been embracing warm comfort food. Simple stuff; nourishing. Fun. Fun is always good with food, even if it's just fun soup or fun bowls.
Man, it sounds like I am really trying to amp up the noble, humble loveliness of the food here.
It was just mashed potatoes and bacon!
But the mashed potatoes were actually champ, filled with sauteed scallions, spring onions and leeks. Goat butter. Buttermilk. You cannot eat a better plate of mashed potatoes.
And the pretty rashers were from Niman Ranch (sustainable, humane, tasty, yadda).
I loved this meal. I'd have it again in a Dublin minute, but we've got other comforty, warm, braisy plans for tomorrow, the coldest (predicted) day of the year.


namastenancy said...

Gorgeous photo and delicious sounding food. I embraced winter with my "almost" curry; in fact, I don't mind winter food because I love slow-cooked dishes.

Unto every season, said the psalmist and I totally agree. When it's threatening snow, champ and curry and other hearty foods.When the temperatures rises, it's time for avocados and shrimp and lighter fare.

Denise | Chez Danisse said...

Ron Swanson would love this image. I'd like to eat it, the actual mashed potatoes and bacon that is, not the image. I'm about to start preparing dinner. I'll roast some cauliflower. Anchovy breadcrumbs will be involved later. Arugula at some point...then a lemon.

Ms Brown Mouse said...

A perfect meal, just perfect. Made up of two of the best things to eat in the world, bacon (natch) and smashed veg with dairy :)
And pretty, that green is lovely.

Kailyn said...

I must admit that I have been addicted to Niman Ranch's applewood bacon for a few years. Any plate or dish with that bacon is indeed a work of art.

knancy said...

If your "braisy plans" go awry, perhaps you could use these same ingredients for a heart and tummy warming creamy soup. Creamy bacon and potato leek soup on a cold and wintry day sounds good to me!

Zoomie said...

Now I want this. But my house guest won't eat pork! Delayed gratification makes me whiny.

cookiecrumb said...

Nancy: Hi, thank you! I loved the look of your curry... only now to find out you hijacked the photo. :D
Amazingly, it's sunny out, and braised lamb shank (though it will happen) is far from my mind.

Denise: OK, you have got to send me your address. Yum. (I'll bring lemons.)

Mouse: Innit?? And, yes, the wonderful winter light that gave me such a pretty photo is now my friend.

Kailyn: Yeah, amidst all the talk of the perfect bacon here, there, way over there... it's so easy to just fall for this very good, available product. :)

Knancy: Yes! We thought of exactly that soup, but this time, I wanted the bacon crisp, not wet. But, what a great idea.

Zoomie: I would never have thought of you as whiny. (Then again, there are a few more delicious details I'm gradually learning about you.)

Heather said...

I love champ! It's a thing I make! I like adding a bit of buttermilk to mine, too. As soon as I finish wading through the vat of chicken and dumplings I've just made (comfort food, indeed), I should whip up a batch of this, here.

cookiecrumb said...

Heather: I drink a glass of buttermilk every morning. I still can't get enough.
You are the champ, my friend.

undercover caterer said...

I love champ! It is the best mashed potato thing around.

cookiecrumb said...

UC Caterer: It's so good, why don't we eat it more often? And bonehead simple to make.