Battle bloody sleeve

Bloody sleeveYesterday I had the opportunity to spend a little time in the kitchen of Daniel Boulud's eponymous New York restaurant, Daniel. I got to make chicken wings with the man himself for a video a friend is producing. Stupidly, I chose not to wear whites, and thought street clothes would make the bit more "authentic" for the home cook. So I was standing there in a gray cashmere sweater and jeans (I did wear my clogs at least) with an apron tied around my waist. Daniel was demonstrating how to prep the wings, which involved sectioning the wing into three parts. WHACK! He came down hard with his chef's knife on the joint, and blood went flying. Flying right onto the sleeve of my sweater! Daniel was very gracious and tried to wipe it off with a dish towel, but that only smeared it around. We had a good laugh about it and my sweater is now at the cleaners. But I've learned my lesson (a lesson, incidentally, I'd already learned but chose to ignore) and next time, I'll be wearing whites. And standing clear of Daniel Boulud when he's wielding his knife and whacking at wings.

Making apple butter

I made Erin's apple butter before I went to Maine, but only had a chance to test my work the other night. (Inspired by a dish at Boston's Locke-Ober restaurant, I roasted and mashed a winter squash, then mixed it with some apple butter. They also add Calvados.) Mmm, this apple butter is delicious! I followed Erin's recipe closely, except when she called for a "fine mesh strainer." At first I tried my chinois, but that was actually too fine, and only the faintest apple juice emerged. I resorted to my less fine mesh strainer and that did the trick. I used a blend of locally-grown Jonamac and Empire apples, and I like to think that added depth to my butter. I can't wait try some of this on a sandwich. Great recipe, thanks Erin!

There's something that I call…

There's something that I call 'chicken guilt,' which is something that has chefs in restaurants making the chicken dish one of the best dishes on the menu because they feel guilty selling a chicken for $28. I've never heard of 'chicken guilt' before, but I love it! Of course, I never order chicken when I'm out because I think, "How good can that chicken be, even if it's $28?"

You are not one to…

You are not one to sit on the cider-lines, you like to be where the action is. According to New York's Apple Country website, that's true about me because "the apple you love best says something about your personality." My love for McIntosh also means "You like to shake things up. You like people and you always enjoy a good party." I think I'd believe this more if they didn't use so many terrible apple puns. "Cider-lines"? Guh.