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 room! There are few things better than a good fire on a cool evening.
Paul put out a spread of cheeses and pear and chutney and added some wild boar salami that I brought from my favorite charcuterie maker in New York… (you can see a video of him on the homepage…)
Then he got to work in the kitchen. We had so many courses for the three of us that Tim decided to invite the neighboring ranch over for dinner… so that added three more to the mix.
Paul served the pasta course first, fresh cut pasta coated in a spectacular tomato sauce that made the house smell edible.
Then rabbit which he braised in Belgian beer over several hours then added a healthy dose of sour cream and wild mushrooms.
Tim’s kitchen is a luxury to cook in. There is miles of wooden counterspace and a very convenient pot rack dangling with useful things.
We took our marinating quail and marinating tenderloins from the day’s hunt, out of the fridge while Tim fired up the grill.
We butterflied the quail so they would cook more evenly on the grill… and the tenderloin we grilled slowly with its smokey spices.
Paul made these lovely salads with hard boiled egg on them and a sweet dressing. The quail was the finishing touch to each salad.
And this cake! Oh my goodness, this cake. It was a maple sugar cake and the outside had a carmelized crust while the inside was custardy… almost like the inside of a pecan tart.
By the time we got to the cake I was on the verge of a food coma. The kind of thing where it tastes so good you want to keep eating even though it hurts. I eventually carried myself to bed to get in a few hours of sleep before another 5:30am wake-up call for the second day’s hunt.
The food tastes so much better when you put in the hard work to find your own ingredients… now excuse me while I go take a nap.
“Sweet and Tangy Salad Dressing”
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon honey or jam
- 1 garlic clove
- 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
- ¼ cup water
- 2/3 cup good olive oil
- ½ teaspoon sea salt and pepper to taste
In a blender, combine the mustard, honey, garlic, vinegar, and water. As you blend, add the oil in a thin steady stream, incorporating the oil thoroughly as you go. An emulsified (homogenous) mixture will develop. Season with salt and pepper. Cover for a few hours to let the flavors meld.