Monday, November 27, 2006

Bread and Onions

Recently I have been attempting bread again, and I have a nice, bubbly starter going in a crock in the fridge. However, it seems that I do not have the best of luck with bread. True, I have a good bubbly starter, good flour to work from, using a scale to consistently measure, long rises, the steam method for baking, and using an instant-read thermometer. But no matter what, no matter how great it smells, how pretty it looks, it just...isn't bread. I'm hoping if I keep plugging away, eventually I master a decent bread, but until then, maybe I'll have to stick with other talents.

To that effect, I decided to make some pickled pearl onions today. I used a variety of onions grabbed from Trader Joe's, so they make a pretty contrast as you can see. Hopefully I can make myself wait at least a month or so before trying them so they'll develop more flavor. Also, I really want to try them served along some nice cheese and some homemade sausage.

Yup, I hope to try my hand at grinding and making my own sausage someday soon. I have asked Santa to bring me a food grinder attachment for my lovely KitchenAid, and I hope to enter the realm of charcuterie soon.

Of course, on a related note, this is due in part to a local fabulous restaurant called The Linkery which is not only dedicated to local producers and knowing where your food comes from, but they also make their own sausage in house! And wonderful sausage and food it is! In fact, to celebrate my new job, Kyle and I went to The Linkery about 10 days ago, and we had such a delicious meal. First, we started with a simple picnic plate with two links (Thai green curry chicken sausage and Romanian beef sausage), yummy cheese, and red wine onions. Kyle had a cask-conditioned Pizza Port Good Grief brown, and I had the San Pasqual Meritage, a local red wine, to drink.

We then had a mixed herb salad and the "grilled filet of wild kangaroo (Australia) with vegetable curry, multi-grain saffron pilaf, and organic kiwi". And I have to say, the kangaroo was cooked to perfection! Cooked like a medium rare filet mignon, it had a delicious pure beef taste with just a final hint that echoed vast spaces of land, sun, and wild grasses. Of course, the multi-grain pilaf and kiwi paired very well with it, two things I wouldn't have thought would work so well together. And to finish we had a Mexican Chocolate Mousse Cake which was beautifully light and fluffy in texture, but sinfully rich and spiced on the tongue. Obviously, we will be going back and enjoying many, many more meals there!

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