Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Sinkless Kitchen

I've moved into my new house and am faced with the overwhelming task of unpacking everything
and finding places for it all.  Didn't I just do this a year ago?  Yes.  But this time it's for real - I own the place.  The house that I lived in all of last year, my first year in Hudson, was a rental.  After about a month and a half I realized that although the house was roomy and in a nice neighborhood, I felt that the landlady was watching my every move and I kind of gave up on decorating desires (holes in the walls, moving furniture on her precious floor, etc.).  Not to mention cooking.  While  I did make some delectable dishes on the the $300. Sears range (which I shared with you on occasion) - it was an unsatisfying experience in many ways.   Baking was just about out of the question - cakes got tough on the outside and remained gooey and almost raw on the inside.  Forget about my favorite  pizza.  It was never right

I bought a beautiful Electrolux Professional series range for the new house.  It's a sturdy workhorse that resembles its more well-known colleagues; the Wolf and the Viking - and costs just a tad under those celebrity cookers.  My reasoning for choosing the Electrolux over the others was because I had lived with a Viking for years in the City - and while it was beloved - it cost a small fortune to repair (same reason I gave up my Volvo once I moved upstate and I was doing more than just recreational driving) - the Electrolux is more main stream and easier to repair.  At least I think so.

My kitchen is painted Majorelle blue - the color made famous by Yves Saint Laurent in the gardens that he rescued and restored on his Marrakech property.  My contractors called the color "blurple" - which what it is - a deep cobalt lightened with undertones of purple.   The range is installed  (the inside of the oven is also blue, like speckled- blue camping tinware) - as is the refrigerator (in the pantry - which used to be a tiny bedroom off the kitchen).  The uninstalled dishwasher is there - but the sink is not.  It's due to arrive any second.  So my cooking attempts have been very limited - Oh, did I say that I don't have any work surfaces to speak of.  Yet.   It's not ideal to use the bathroom sink and bathtub as water and dishwashing sources.  So, I've stayed very simple.  Oatmeal.  Salads.  Pasta.  You know.

In a week or two this blog should start communicating the results of cooking experiments in the new kitchen.   Did I mention that the kitchen faces southwest giving me a lovely view of the Catskill Mountains - and now, with the leaves missing from the trees, a sliver of the Hudson River.

I have spent an inordinate amount of time at the new Bonfiglio & Bread (still no website - you can "like" them on Facebook, however) here in Hudson on upper Warren Street feeding my carbohydrate addiction.   And everyday there are new choices.  Last week I had lunch with friends and chose Bonfiglio's panade.   Panade is most often asscociated with onion soup but really it's a savory bread pudding and the ideal dish to make with leftover bread and other things that are hanging around the kitchen. 

To inspire you - here's what Rachel, of Bonfiglio did for the panade (at least I deduced) that I ate:
.  Soaked some of the bakery's leftover bread, sliced, (but cubed bread is good in a preparation like this too) in their leftover butternut squash soup.  Baked the mixure with grated cheese  - maybe cheddar - in a round pan.
.   Served a VERY generous wedge of the butternut squash panade on a bed of sauteed kale (also leftover) with a chopped fresh parsley and red onion salad.
.   You can't ask for more goodness.


r.i.p. Allegra's cousins, and new friend; Dewey, Hercules, and Roxanne

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