Sunday, January 29, 2012

JANUARY 2012

Evening sun Brochon
HAPPY NEW YEAR

Although my greeting is a bit late, here a Happy New Year can be sent out until the end of February. So let's go with the french tradition.

For my January weather report. As for winter it has been mild, but rainy and/or foggy. We have had sun here in Gevrey only a couple of days. Dreary, damp and cold can be tiring!
But the other side of this, mother nature is really confused. At the round-about the spring bulbs have all poked through and are about 5 inches tall!
And I have added a couple of photos from my yard, and this is January, supposedly winter! We have had a few nights below freezing, thus some frost. But this next week they promise winter will be here. Nights below freezing( oh no!) and maybe below freezing all day on Thursday(yikes). Get out the winter gear. Maybe it will be over after this week, one can hope.

Rose photo Jan 14
Same rose photo Jan 18..a little frost
Jan 29, dandy lion! ! ! Backyard
Even weeds are pretty when frosted
 Both of my clubs celebrated the Epiphany. It is celebrated here with a Galette des Rois. Ah the Galette des Rois. Flakey pastry with almond paste filling. Good baker, good galette. And with a feve ( feve is a type of bean, but now it is a fancy little token).

This last month I was privileged with tasting a gevrey wine at least 115 yrs old, at least. All it states on the
bottle is marriage of M and M 1896 ( names hard to read). So was it 2 years old at the wedding feast or more?
It had been opened two weeks before, so it had deteriorated some; but after the acid taste...there it was, long lasting in the mouth - was the taste of Chambertin! Absolutely AMAZING. What an experience!!!!!!!! And below is a photo.
Only living here does one get an experience like this ( or if you have millions and can buy anything you want).
Very old wine
I took some photos one sunny day walking around Brochon. Sometimes the light in the evening here in the winter months is absolutely gorgeous (opening photo). It takes on an intense golden tone. Love it. These others however were taken in the other direction, and did not get the setting sun's gold tones.
Château Stephen Liégeard -1895

Eglise Saint- Symphorien XI century


Great example of a Burgundian roof- Brochon

Time of year that the vines are cut back and the cut branches are burned. Note the burning barrels. The work in the vines never ends. If all the cutting is done and the serments are all burned, then some vignerons are able to get some time off in February. What hard work, but the results-ahhh! Last summer I bought a bottle of wine from this vineyard back of our house. Have to try some day. The vineyard is Craite Paille, but the name (lieu dit-place called) is not used on the wine labels.
Working on the vines behind out house

Vines in Brochon

On Friday we went to Beaune for lunch. We took the train so we both could have wine with lunch. It is only a 20 minute train ride to Beaune. We ate lunch at the Caveau des Arches. What a wonderful lunch. The food was perfect (I have scallops with risotto for my main plate...it was heavenly-and sinful at the same time-so rich). A nice white wine from St Aubin, and it was a perfect meal (Keith had fish). Needed to walk a little after a lunch like that!! We had time before the next train back to Gevrey, so we walked around Beaune a little. And the sun was out now and then!
This week-end is the Saint-Vincent celebration ( patron saint of the vines). This year it is in Beaune, Nuits-Saint-Georges and Dijon. It is spread between the 3 villes to celebrate (and enlist more signatures) for the "Climats de Bourgogne" ... 50,000 signatures needed to apply for UNESCO( if you know french and want to apply to here: http://www.climats-bourgogne.com/fr/#/RejoindreLeComite). I should go and take some photos, but on Friday, Beaune had not done any fancy decorating for the event. A few signs up pointing the directions for wine tastings, somewhat surprising. I had thought they would have some decorations around the city.  But tourists will come and the tourists will drink.
Old Lavoir ( place to wash cloths)- on the right-Note that it is covered. 


Another Burgundian roof - Beaune

one of the towers in the ramparts of Beaune
This Sunday here in Gevrey is also the day that Saint-Vincent is celebrated. At 11am there was the mass. We went up to the church just after 11:30 so I could take photos of the statue of Saint-Vincent and the parade. The crowd started to gather (all those who did not go to mass) and wait for everyone to leave church. The noon bells rang and my feet were frozen. Finally they emerged from the church carrying Saint-Vincent. There was a small parade in a grand circle ( more or less around the block). Then all into cars to be continued in Brochon. The vigneron who keeps Saint-Vincent for the year invites everyone for a glass to celebrate ( a kir). So we followed and had our glass of Kir and sang the ban bourgognon. Below are a few photos.
Outside the Church with the statue

Gevrey's Saint-Vincent

Vigneron decorated _ outside his cave

OK I am going to try to load a short video of the parade just outside the cave of the vigneron in Brochon, with the band playing.  Tell me if it does not open well. This is the first time I have tried this. It is short, a small taste of life in a small village. For those who have been here, it is next or behind the SuperU (grocer).
video

                 

RECIPE OF THE MONTH

Chicken Soup

France is a nation of soups.  It is a cold day here in Gevrey and I was outside taking photos of the Saint-Vincent festivities. So I thought hot soup sounded like a good idea for tonight. Chicken soup is anything you want it to be...and can be used to to get rid of some leftovers. 
This is my version of chicken soup with left over Roasted Chicken. 



INGREDIENTS

Left over chicken -from Roasted Chicken



1-2 carrots cut in small circles or half 
circles (spoon size morsels)
1 branch of celery chopped
1 large onion chopped
1 Tablespoon olive oil
12 green beans cut into 1/2 inch pieces
2 tomato cubed (or a can of diced tomatoes)
3 medium potatoes cubed
1 Tablespoon parsley chopped fine
2 sprigs Thyme
1 bay leaf
2 chicken bouillon cubes**
1 small branch celery chopped into small pieces
6 cups water

Salt and pepper to taste


* You can add other vegetables also, be creative. Add some peas, or zucchini, or yellow summer squash. Or add rice instead of potatoes or use pasta noodles. Also  use what herbs or flavorings you like. Try something...today I added a tsp of cumin.

** Taste, depends on the broth you recoup from cooking the chicken
PREPARATION

1. Clean chicken and cut into petite morsels. Place in a bowl.

2. In large stove top pot, saute the onion and celery in olive oil

3. Add the drippings from the left over chicken**

4. Add 6 cups of water and chicken broth cubes.

5. Bring to a boil. Add thyme and bay leaf

6. Add cut chicken and cook over medium heat for 30 minutes.

7. Add all the vegetables and simmer another 30 minutes. This should reduce the liquid by about one third.

8. Taste and add salt and pepper to taste [this will depend on the saltiness of the bouillon cubes ]
















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