30 November 2013

With that lamb...

In France, with gigot d'agneau you serve beans. Usually they are the little pale green flageolet beans, which are the beans inside haricots verts when you let the haricots verts grow big. That's what we had with our gigot, along with some haricots verts mixed in for appearance. I didn't take pictures of those, but you can see them in the background on the last photo I posted yesterday.

As a first course, Walt made a salad that he's been making once or twice a year for a while now. It's a radis noir, a black or Spanish radish, peeled and sliced super thin on a kitchen mandolin. And it's the cheese called Mimolette, also sliced thin and arranged on top of the radish slices. The herb is tarragon (estragon) this time; sometimes it's chervil (cerfeuil). The dressing is just a little white wine vinegar and EVOO. I couldn't resist that abbreviation, which I think is funny. I guess you can figure out what it means.

We had a light cheese course after the lamb. We had a Tomme de Domessin — Domessin is a village in the Savoie region, in the Alps. And we had a Maroilles, which is a cheese from the north of France that people find especially stinky. I like it. The Maroilles (pronounced [mahr-WAHL]) is the orangey soft cheese on the right in the photo above.

For dessert, we had Walt's version of U.S. pumpkin pie. He makes it with his own buttery crust, of course, and a filling of pureed or at least mashed pumpkin or squash pulp, flavored slightly with the typical anglo-saxon spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, cloves, cardamom) but in very small quantities so that the spices aren't overpowering. He also reduces the amount of sugar. This year, we had a bumper crop of winter squashes in the garden, so he used the flesh of half a spaghetti squash and that of half a butternut squash. It makes a nice tart (we call it a pie in America, but it doesn't have a top crust like apple pies and others do).


  1. EVOO... not Popeye's wife then!!

    I wonder if the salad would work with Mooli Radish...
    most of ours are the same size as a Black Spaniard...
    and cross section is the same...
    just need the mimmo...
    and I was looking at some in the supermarché yesterday...
    but it wasn't the sliceable...
    it was the "hard as rock" grating kind!!
    But we've got some Salers in t'frigo!!

  2. Tim, I have no idea what Mooli Radish is. The Mimolette we used was semi-dry and sliced just fine, but still had the good flavor.

  3. Mooli radish (Urdu name) is the long fat white radish also czlled Daikon in Japanese. They can weigh up to a kilo and are only slightly peppery. They are easy to grow and we use them a lot in casseroles, slaws etc. We'll definitely try Walt's dish with them! P.

  4. Bonjour, Ken. Est-ce qu'il faut garder le Maroilles au frigo? Sur ta photo, on dirait que le fromage a déjà commencé à couler. Quelques heures à température ambiante et je suppose que vous l'auriez mangé à la cuillère.

  5. Pauline, daikon would be good too, I think, but we make a different kind of salad with that, grated, with a sweeter but also vinegary dressing.

    Dean, moi je mets le Maroilles au réfrigérateur parce que je le garde un certain temps et je ne veux pas qu'il coule outre-mesure. Si je le consommais plus rapidement, ce ne serait pas nécessaire. J'imagine que tu peux en trouver à Seattle.

  6. Oh my. My, my, my. What a post! My mom is here, and we both had a great time looking at your posts yesterday and today (and discussing the label with "M. Charles" on it!). Gorgeous offerings!

  7. Judy, Mr Bro-a-d'urst is just too weird in France. Hello to your mom. Hope you all are having a nice weekend.

  8. that pie! that cheese! a merry time for all i'm sure. lovely! :-)

  9. I don't know if you've ever seen the Rachel Ray show, but she uses the phrase EVOO constantly.


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