Sunday, March 27, 2011

Living in New England

Spring 2011

 Back home, the weather was always pretty clear cut. Cold from October to April, winter coats, boots, scarfs and mittens. Now, since my moved to the area of New England (8 years ago!) I've been in a great state of confusion as to how to dress. The only reason I even own a winter coat now is to visit Montréal (That's where I bought it 4 years ago actually). I'm still a teenager at heart and you can usually spot me wearing a sweater in the middle of December. Here in Rhodes Island the weather never gets *that* bad. A mere 5 inches of snow and the state declares emergency, schools are closed and people are warned to stay home for their own safety.... WHAT!? This gets me chuckling but none the less. Now we're in spring and I still don't know how to dress. The sun is shinning, sky is blue and I'm freezing! The car said it was -2C outside this morning (28F) but from the inside it could be 30C (86F) and you'd never know.

Diamond Hill Park 2011

Ah well! Time to cook more lovely warm meals and stews. Around St-Patricks day, New England has this wonderful thing called a *Boiled dinner*. Boiled beef brisket and cabbages, the whole thing scared me quite a bit for the first year but this year I decided to take the bull by the horns and I bought two briskets to experiment with. So sue me, they were on sa-aale.
Diamond Hill Park 2011
My first experiment was inspired from Eat a duck I must whom takes a different approach to the tradition meal and yet manages to strike a home-run. The brisket is boiled 3 hours in Guinness beer and instead of boiled cabbage he makes little pan fried Brussels sprouts. I followed the instructions to the letter and ended up with a absolutely FABULOUS meal. I had never been a fan of Brussels sprouts but this meal really did it for me. I would advice anyone to try it.

The corned beef is a excessively salty piece of meat but once a year, it can't hurt, rite?

Two days later I made the second one, to my lovely husband's request. This time I made it in the crock-pot covered in simple Stubbs bbq sauce. I like the sauce for it's sweetness, the three pounds brisket cooked for about 8 hours on low setting and served with a nice slice of skillet corned bread from The Pioneer Woman. 
Happy and full belly, hubby has been begging me to make more corned beef since. But as some of you might know I've had a bout of food poisoning/kicking my own ass so I've been trying to cook light and easy since my Birthday.

Have a bird
Stay tuned for my Rachel Ray experiment, I love her magazine as much as I hate watching her show, she drives me berserk but the mags has his own merits. On the menu, cauliflower fritata.

See you spoon ( HAR HAR)


  1. These photos are so beautiful!! BTW you write very well!

  2. Just wanted to let you I left a response to you comment and if you would like feel free to email me If you make them again I hope they work out. I hate when recipes don't work out, don't you?

    New England is beautiful as your pictures show. It is a bit cold for me, although I am just south of you in PA and spring comes maybe a day earlier! Nice post.