Saturday, August 8, 2009

a perfect August day

Yesterday was just perfect! A day of shopping, taking pictures, and a wonderful lunch with good friends is always a good thing. Then a steak on the grill with a very well done potato and a salad completed the day.

I have mentioned Flowerbed Farm before and will probably mention it again but I always find a treat or two there. Yesterday I found a swan planter. It is Italian pottery and will be going to Florida in November. I will photograph her and put the picture in the sidebar. Deb's flowers are beautiful so I took some pictures of those as well.

Deb's shop is an inspiration for tablescaping.

Each time I go to her shop I see more wonderful things I must have. Many bloggers create wonderful tablescapes for Tablescape Thursdays. I'm not sure that I could do that every week but maybe just once. So I pick up little dessert dishes one week and vaseline water goblets another week and I need to make or find a tablecloth for my Sasha Brastoff dishes. So maybe soon I can participate.

And then I saw this Haviland soup tureen. Can you picture this with soup bowls with handles to match. Since I published yesterday I have been thinking about wild mushroom soup!

Beautiful dishes but no room in my closet.

We went to Bray's for lunch and I had their lobster stew. The picture does not do it justice. Each spoonful has chunks of lobster meat and is made to order for the customer. I probably would not make lobster stew but I will make Cream of Wild Mushroom Soup.

Ina Garten is a favorite of mine. I have never made anything from her cookbooks that has not been good or come out looking just like the picture. I will make this next week. I will also probably have lobster stew again next week.

Cream of Wild Mushroom Soup

5 ounces fresh shitake mushrooms
5 ounces fresh portabello mushrooms
5 ounces fresh cremini (or porcini) mushrooms
1 tablespoon good olive oil
1/4 pound (1 stick) plus 1 tablespoon butter, divided
1 cup chopped yellow onion
1 carrot, chopped
1 sprig fresh thyme plus 1 teaspoon minced thyme leaves, divided
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 cups chopped leeks, white and green parts (2 leeks)
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup dry white wine
1 cup half-and-half
1 cup heavy cream
½ cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley

Wipe mushrooms with a dry paper towel. Separate the stems. Trim to remove any bad spots. Chop the stems and slice the tops 1/4- inch. If the slices are too thick, cut them into bite-sized pieces. I like a few larger slices. Set aside.

For the stock: heat the oil and 1 tablespoon of the butter in a large pot. Add the chopped stems, the carrot, the onions, the sprig of thyme 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper. Cook over medium-low heat until vegetables are soft (10-15 minutes). Add 6 cups water, bring to a boil and simmer uncovered for 30 minutes. Strain, reserving the liquid. You should have about 4 ½ cups stock.

Meanwhile, in another large pot, heat the remaining butter and the leeks. Cover and cook over low heat for 15 - 20 minutes, until the leeks begin to brown. Add the sliced mushroom caps and cook for another 10 minutes until brown and tender. Add the white wine and stir another minute, scraping the bottom of the pot. Add the mushroom stock, minced thyme leaves, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon pepper. Reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Add the half-and-half, cream, parsley. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Heat through but do not boil. Serve hot. This serves 5 - 6.

1 comment:

Sunny said...

What a lovely blog you have, your chair picture is so inviting.
Sunny :)


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