Monday, April 1, 2013

MARCH 2013

A cave in Monthelie

It is the end of March and Easter week-end. Here in France, Easter Monday is also a holiday. So it is a 3 day weekend. The symbol for Easter is a bell, or cloche in french. And there is chocolate in the stores, no different than the US- except I did not find chocolate malt eggs, oh well, did not need those.

 March is some what of a mundane month. As this winter has still continued with cold and rain.
Had a couple meetings with my Flora and Fauna group. First one was indoors.  We worked on mushroom identification. Fascinating, right. I enjoy it.
The month ended fairly well. Went out for a walk with my Flora and Fauna group. We climbed to the  plateau of the Combe Lavaux....puff, puff!! I am really out of shape after a lazy winter! But we all made it. There are definitely signs of spring. I love walking around in the woods. I have provided a couple of photos of Mother Nature.

Pierce Niege
Pezize (mushroom)
Tremella (mushroom)

Easter Sunday we went to Auxey-Duressses to meet up with a friend and go wine tasting in the village 2km away. Tom had worked with Keith on the bicycle tours and has now bought an old mill house in Auxey. Lots of work to be done on the house and on the grounds...and he is progressing. We arrived after lunch and joined those that were walking to Monthelie. The day was not too bad, about 7 degrees Celsius (you do the math) -but the sun was shining. We tasted some very nice wines, both red and white. But in reality you can only taste so many wines before your palate gives out! So Cecile, one Tom's friends, and I headed for the church to listen to some music. Performing was a group from Dijon that sings middle age music A Capella  I had heard them before and always enjoy their concerts. When the guys were done tasting, they knew where to find us.
Monthelie from afar

Church tower..Clunisien church of the XII century

We were walking up...they offered rides too,
but  this one was going the wrong way

Bit of tasting

Chateau of Monthelie- XVI century

2 chevaux- our wine is in there
Hope they go back to Tom's

Stone church tower in Auxey

Guys chopping in Tom's garden

Recipe of the Month

Keith thought I should add one of his favorite dishes. I am not sure how easy it is to get rabbit in the US, but it is easy to find fresh rabbit in all the stores here. If you can not find it or are against eating rabbit, you probably could use chicken legs. Never have tried that though.

(For two)
  • 2 rabbit legs
  • 2 cups of white wine
  • 1 onion
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 garlic smashed
  • 1 cube of chicken broth
  • 2 TBS Dijon mustard ( regular or with grains)
  • Garni bouquet (thyme,rosemary,bay leaf)
  • Cream or Creme Fraiche (optional)
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  1. Saute the onions until translucent (in olive oil)
  2. Add rabbit legs and brown lightly
  3. Add garlic and mix with onions
  4. Add mustard
  5. Add bouillon cube
  6. Add wine and then water to cover the rabbit
  7. Add herbs
  8. Peel and cut carrot in 3-4 pieces and add
  9. Salt and pepper
  10. Heat up everything (slight boil) and then put it into the over at about 200 degrees for 2 hours
  11. Remove from oven, add cream and stir.
  12. With oven OFF, put the rabbit on a plate and put in the oven to keep warm
  13. Reduce the sauce on the stove top until it thicken slightly...Check seasoning
  14. Remove rabbit from the oven and cover with sauce....mmmm

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