Saturday, March 24, 2012

Bonomelli Camomilla

I have a habit of waking at 4am. I end up buying too many books on Amazon, or plotting 5 year plan.
I came upon this tea, I think it was the vintage style packaging that got me, at the Italian market.
The tea bags are packed with delicate camomile flowers.
Beautiful dreams,
endless sleep.
Hypnos in a box.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Carbonnade De Boeuf 'A La Flamande

It was a perfect chilly day for cooking. I made my rounds to the butcher and the wine shop, I bought herbs for my Bouquet Garni, and put on my Nina Simone records. I opened the bottle of Bourgogne, poured a lovely glass for myself and began to prepare this regional recipe from Champagne, France.

Carbonnade De Boeuf 'A  La Flamande
1/4 cup oil
2 Tbsp butter
2 lb beef chuck eye roast ( ask butcher cut 1/4 in thick in 2 slices) cut again in half for four pieces.
1 large thinly sliced onion
5 Tbsp flour
1 pint Chimay beer
1 1/2 cup broth
salt and pepper
pinch of grated nutmeg
bouquet garni ( look up my post on this)
2-3 crusty rolls and 1-2 Tbsp mustard

Set the oven at 400. heat the oil with the butter in a frying pan, add the beef slices and brown them well over high heat; if necessary, brown in batches.
 Heat the remaining oil in a flameproof casserole and add onions and cook over low fire, stirring often until soft.
  Raise heat and brown onions slightly; the stir in flour. Bake in the oven, stirring often, for 10 min to brown flour. Stir in the beer, broth, salt, pepper, nutmeg and bouquet garni, add the meat and bring to a boil on top of stove, skimming occasionally. Return to the oven and simmer uncovered for just under 2 hours or until the meat is very tender.
   For croûtes:   cut rolls in thick slices and and set on baking sheet and bake until crisp and brown. Spread a thick layer of mustard and put aside.

  When the beef is cooked, discard the bouquet garni and taste the sauce for seasoning. Arrange the croutes on top of the beef and baste them lightly with sauce. Grill/broil for 5 min until the top is browned. Serve in the casserole.