A Brief History of My Bench Top


Crazy days.  Kids on vacation.  Cows moving and shaking and calving.  Next batch of chickens looking good.  TAXES! So here is my bench.  From left to right:

  • glass of cheap ass white wine … from a box … but it’s French!
  • pancake bowl for morning pancakes … then afternoon pancakes
  • crazy panda mug, a gift to Daddy, from Lucy
  • cool pepper grinder recommended from my friend Erin as the best way to grind your pepper
  • pyrex jug for morning egg scramble, I don’t eat pancakes, but i make them with love
  • hanging fancy pan waiting for this evening’s hot chocolate
  • jar of duck fat
  • large cheap ass pan given to me by some whacky Aussie.  It serves as the pan to heat cow formula for “milk dud” our bottle calf.
  • tongs resting on top of the lid to shitty pan used to cook our test pork
  • Ikea towel resting on super expensive copper pan ( number blah when we bought expensive copper pans for each year we continued to stay married ) …. ( now we save money with a giggle and a hug and continue to stay married )
  • super expensive pot made leftover surprise with pork I carved off … like in the movie Alive … though with pig … not human ass…
  • our stand-in coffee pot because our loving espresso machine has had another fight with our water.  f-you calcaire!!
  • red pot heating milk for lesser coffee regime

One Ton Tomato


Total flop of a tomato harvest.  Too hot.  I managed to harvest two small tomatoes of which I fried up for Brent. It went with his “potato, leek, garlic, egg and shit” breakfast.  I halved them.  Too small to slice.

Meanwhile, friends had no problem with their tomatoes.  In one day, I received a ton of tomatoes from three friends.  Today, I processed them.

These are for the pot.


These are for happy misses chickens.  They love tomato skin!


So now, let me ruin a classic Cuban song for you.  You’ll never sing it the same way again.

Hot Bowl Of Food: Cowboy Casserole


Resident teen and ex-British Public School Girl was given Brent’s favorite cookbook of the year, “School Dinners.”

She picked Cowboy Casserole.  Dominated by baked beans, this sausage-y, potato, tomato, onion sludge faired well in the Curtis household.


Seeing as the Hot Bowl of Food was edible, the head chef has authorised future trials with teen cook and School Dinners book.



Check Out This Book


He says.  Well, okay.  I’m always up for a culinary challenge.  Let me randomly pick a recipe.


Okay, one can of Le Spam.  This could take some time.  … thankfully.  Perhaps a duck confit substitution?  or another random recipe selection.

Working Out The Egg Cup


I think it’s less than 46mm.  Any biggger, a bit tricky.  Any smaller, cute, but no cigar.


Also, big arse lettuce from my personal Lettuce Queen connection.  This beauty is bigger than Minty’s head and has two hearts.  Oh, I loves me some lettuce hearts.  Oh,  I feel a Kylie song coming on …

Pickled Peppers


I’m not a pickling person. I don’t have a pickled past. I love pickles, yet I have never pickled. My husband loves pickled herring. If I have no pickled herring or cornichons or capers, my fridge feels unbalanced. In September, when life ( or Robert ) gives you a lovely bag of peppers, make pickles! … or so I’m told.


I grew up near the penultimate exit off I-5 before you drive into Mexico. Pickled jalapeño compliments most Mexican food, so I was keen. I followed the recipe exactly and I suppose I wait.


Lucy packed the peppers with dill, pepper corns, garlic, onions, carrots, peppers and tried to make them look perty. I filled them with hot, bubbling vinegar mix and sealed them tight. I know I’ve not met prize winning pickledom, but I have high hopes that these beauties will taste nice next to some ground beef, cream and some Substance P.

Duck Box!


Four duck carcasses in all their hearty, meaty, manchon-y, foie gras-y glory were ready to be cut into place for now and future meals for the family. The foie was done. Whew, that was easy. That came de-foied and ready for action. The four duck carcasses awaited my attention. Olivia and Carlos of La Ferme de Roussa and duck chopper upper extraodinaire, taught me ( and others ) how to cut up your duck. Yet when faced, quite literally, with the four carcasses, I forgot the lesson. I knew the pieces to render, but how I got there took four tries. By the sixth breast, I think my magret might look like a magret. Even though I stumbled my way through, the taste of the duck was not compromised.

The confit has been bubbling away after an overnight salting. Otto is drooling. He’s a confit man. Tosca has been her natural family supportive self making sure that things in the kitchen are ticking and dropping off the counter away nicely. She also helped tremendously with the duck head removal. They say, you can cook darn near everything from a duck carcass, though a dog will rumor otherwise.


While Z and I were away delivering meat in Bordeaux, the kids started to rhyme. It all started with Brent ending a sentence involving “calm day” and Otto responding with “Comté.” Anybody want a peanut? It was on. Tonight, a few syllables short of a parenting opportunity, Lucy spat out this lovely: “I’d love to eat duck, but FIRE TRUCK!” Thank you, Michael, for being a potty-mouth thesaurus.