Cool Stuff – Blog
“Sweet and Tangy Salad Dressing: The Feast”

Welcome to the final installment of my three part dinner series… After a full day of hunting on the ranch, and a full day of cooking by Paul, we finally got to eat the fruits of our labor.   The ranch has a very beautiful interior, with lovely wood paneling and a cozy lodge atmosphere. The fireplace was especially nice and there were many of them… one in almost every […]

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“Quail Marinade + Tenderloin Marinade: Hunting for the Salad Course”

Welcome to part two of my three part dinner series… After we brought  the hogs back to the ranch, Tim put them in a walk-in cooler. After debating, we decided to have the tenderloins for dinner rather than wait to let them age. So we brought them into the kitchen and got them ready for a marinade. My friend Paul, is quite the gourmand, and he was in charge of […]

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“Hog Hunting”

Welcome to my three part dinner series. In part one, we go on a hog hunt, very early… The owner of Hidden Valley Ranch, Tim Haley, and his foreman Craig, and I hopped into the jeep and drove through some very chilly winds… But the ranch was so beautiful as the sun came up that it was a lovely distraction from the cold. Pretty soon after we set out, we saw […]

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“Bringing Home the Bacon”

Today I am off to a place called Hidden Valley Ranch. I’m pretty sure it’s not the salad dressing place because I am going there to hunt wild pig, and that would be strange… This is my schedule for Saturday: Out of bed before sunrise, hunting at daybreak with the ranch owner and ranch foreman. Come back from the morning hunt for breakfast. Afternoon hunt for quail and wild pigeon […]

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“The Good, The Bad, The Ugly”

Today I conclude my recipe testing. At least the recipe testing for my book. It has been a long windy journey, full of twists and turns. Full of pretty, tasty things… Full of ugly, horrid things… Full of strange happenings… Full of outright kitchen drama… Nevertheless, I have survived, with only a shard of glass in my foot as a battle wound, and the near fatal loss of a pork loin. And I […]

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“Dinner at Grandma Pellegrini’s”

Grandma Frances Pellegrini invited me and my brother Gordon over for dinner recently. On the menu was chickpea and tomato soup among other things… She has a very special soup terrine that looks very lovely with soup in it. It dresses up even the simplest of soups. I have a feeling it has been in this house since her mother (my great-grandmother) lived here… but I’m not sure… I think […]

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“Pickled Peppers: My Strange French Peppers”

I can’t really tell you where they came from. All I’ll say is that I may or may not have smuggled them from Provence. I may or may not have loved them so much in the restaurant garden that I worked in, that I may or may not have dried the seeds on the windowsil of my rundown house and tucked them into my suitcase and brought them back to the […]

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“Carrot Soup & A 1.125 Pound Carrot”

I want to share with you the strange things that are coming out of my garden. This carrot for example, which looks like a chicken: Or this scale-tipping carrot…a 1.125 pounder. There was a 1.5 pounder even, but I ate it. I turned it into carrot soup. I never think of carrot soup except in the moment that I’m eating it. And in that moment I ask myself why I don’t think […]

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“Who Dunnit?”

Another milestone this week at Tulipwood! The gals are starting to lay eggs! Can you believe it? It feels like just a few months ago that I was posting pictures of these tiny little things, and they are now laying eggs? Well, at least one of them is…. and they are very tiny. Look at them compared to one of Lucy’s eggs: They are called pullet eggs, and are the first eggs that young hens lay… […]

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“Girl Hunters”

The coolest thing I’ve seen in recent months… … is a father teaching his daughter how to properly clean a bird for dinner. Wanting her to understand what it is to be a meat eater and how to be a fair and honest meat eater at that. Hunting is not about male bonding in the woods anymore… it’s about understanding how to participate in nature, how to hunt for food, take only […]

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