Saturday, November 10, 2012

Good Morning

Some mornings I get up quite early.
Long before most humans want to be disturbed or enter into conversations.
In warmer seasons I slide into comfy old clothes and  head outdoors to the garden or to a beach or just for a good heart thumping walk.  Not so this morning.  It is currently 33 degrees.  Actually a few degrees warmer than it was when I unfurled myself from a down comforter. 

This morning  I did not even fetch the paper. Not just because I am on vacation from all news sources but because I am not attracted by frozen air or crunchy grass or icy brick walkways. I was however once again hopeful I could make that elusive perfect cup of tea. Brewed to the correct flavor depth with "just so"  amounts of cream and sugar. Served in a pre-warmed, comfortable to the hand and lips, mug. 

When I am on sabbatical from news of every sort, I do not read papers or turn on a radio or television. I have a very entertaining library of books on architecture, design, art . This morning  however, what captured my interest was  Bluegrass Winners,  a cookbook by the Garden Club of Lexington Kentucky. Have you seen this cookbook? It is organized by horse farm. We are talking 'bout some of America's most prestigious Thoroughbred  farms. The cookbook has photos from the farms,  a menu from a social event at the farm and a one page story about the farm itself. I find it entertaining. Also comforting. This was a present from Mermaid and we mothers love it when our children choose well.

There are a couple of things I  find unusual  about this book. One is they have simple, hearty, farm menus. This makes sense as horse farming is hard, hard labor. Second ,there are a lot of recipes with turkey, asparagus or tomatoes because all are plentiful. Not surprising for a community known for its "Hot Brown" signature sandwich. This is a very hearty, open faced, turkey sandwich.

 But, at some of our most prestigious gillion dollar racing homesteads I expected a bit more posh to the menus.   For instance, on page 29 is a menu for Brunch at Claiborne Farm. This is  Secretariats home ...  .the grandest of the grand!

Hominy Ring with Turkey Hash
Smoked Sausage
Grilled Tomatoes
Apple Fritters
Hot Biscuits with Preserves

Have you ever eaten hominy? I have. It is not my favorite substance. It has a bland taste and a peculiar texture which disturbs the tongue. Reading the menu I thought, " they must do something spectacular with hominy if they serve it for brunch at Claiborne!" So I looked up the recipe: 1cup milk, 2 tbs butter, 2 cups cold, boiled hominy drained, 2 eggs beaten, 1tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper.  Heat milk and butter, add hominy and mix until smooth. Stir in eggs and seasonings, pour into a buttered 1 quart ring mold, bake at 350 until firm to the touch and brown on top. About 30-40 minutes.  

Reading this recipe I was less eager to experience brunch at Claiborne. The top two items were the only prepared foods, everything else is sort of in the heat and eat category.  The hominy ring  recipe reads as bland, if not blah.  So I thought the hominy ring must be the "go with" for some fabulously savory turkey hash.  It would be fair to say these recipes are not as exciting as their horses. The turkey hash recipe is basic. Even ordinary: saute celery, onions, bell peppers in butter, add chopped cooked turkey, turkey gravy, parsley , salt and pepper.

Not to worry. 
I just turned a few pages and found myself at the  Hardboot Farm Tennis Party where they were serving: 

 After Tennis
Shrimp and Cheddar Pie
Strawberries White House

                                        Actually, if this is the view, I do not care what they serve.


Rebecca said...

sounds like you are having a great time and come to think of it i've never had brunch before not technically i've eat breakfast for lunch but not sure that's the same

moi said...

Ah, you need to taste posole, then. Hominy, pork, spices, red chile. The stew that keeps New Mexicans humming.

fishy said...

My recommendation would be to take your love and treat yourselves to Brunch someplace wonderful! Often the menu is a combination of the best breakfast and luncheon foods or wonderful, creative combinations of the two. Then there are delightful brunchy beverages like Mimosas or Bellinis too.

I have seen some interesting recipes for posole. Since hominy takes on the flavors of surrounding ingredients I am sure this is a richly flavored, rib sticking stew.

Did you not think the hominy ring sounded blah?

Anonymous said...


I don't know why the flirty girls didn't win! That was a great turn of phrase.

Come play Haiku Monday this week at