Return to the Midcoast of Maine

Most people go South for warmer weather during their Spring time get-away.  Not us, we go North–to Maine.  We brave the near negative temps for a  week to take in all that we miss… friends, food, fun, farm life and the making of fabulous memories in Vacationland.  Possibly we’ll have our own slice of Maine next year ;-)

sunset over new england

 

Maine

 

40 Paper Camden

 

Coastie friends

 

Willow Bake Shoppe

 

Don

 

Acadia National Park

ducks

 

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colored cottages

 

Belgian Horses

 

Belfast Maine waterfall

 

vinland portland maine

 

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50 acre Forever Farm  The Pear’s 50 acre Forever Farm

 Maine snowy road

 

Until then…

xoxo,

TTP

PS… special thanks to the Joyful Coasties, Burgess family, Momma Kitty and Oyster River farm peeps for making our Spring break memorable! We miss you all.

servez-vous to sweetness

The Chef happily slaved away in the kitchen today so that this neglected blog could get a fresh post of sweetness.  He pulled out his mother’s favorite recipes–a strawberry pretzel salad dessert and the ever-so-coveted brownie toffee bars.  They’re only seen at Christmas time around these parts.  Though I believe the Coasties he cooks for might see them at least monthly.  Can’t be for sure though.   The leftovers never seem to make their way home.  

Then out of the wild blue yonder he unexpectedly whips up an almond macaron batter!  Without hesitation I ran to the cupboard, shuffled around in the top cabinet behind what remains of my last few boxes of Twinings Thé Vanille to find my dear Ladurée Marie Antoinette tea.  He knew all along what he was going to make.  A pastel aqua blue cookie with a perfectly perfumed tea infused buttercream… my heart melted.  He seriously knows how to read my mind before I even know what I’m thinking.  

So without further ado… servez-vous to the sweetness of this Sunday.     

strawberry pretzel salad desset

brownie toffee bar

a break in between the trips to the overn...ginger beer, rum, meyer lemon

a break in between the trips to the oven…ginger beer, rum, meyer lemon

Laduree Marie Antoinette macaron

Laduree Marie Antoinette macarons

a very old table cloth of my great-grandmothers... servez-vous!

a very old table cloth that belonged to my great-grandmother who married a Frenchman

Interested in one of these recipes?  Send us a message, we’ll be happy to pass along.

xoxo,

TTP

the snow day that didn’t come

The forecast called for a “wintry mix” –possible snow and sleet today.  The schools closed, the Chef had a free day of liberty, the roads were sand/salted as were the stairs here at our humble abode, yet…all we’ve seen is drizzle, and small drops of rain posing as snow.  Made me think of these photos I took last weekend, when the forecast was a wee-bit more spot on.

ice on a fence

frozen berry

water drops

bokeh water drops

macro water drops

macro water drops

water dropletsStay warm dear friends…

Do you have to let it “lengua”?

“Do you have to, do you have to, do you have to let it lengua?” (Linger by the Cranberries)  You’ll understand at the end…

Langue de boeuf” is what the Chef cooked tonight…for the first time ever.  That would be beef tongue in English.  It sounds so more gourmet, and delicious when pronounced in French.  There’s an added finesse to it ;-)

The Chef adapted his version from the recipe “langue de boeuf sauce madère“– French Feasts: 299 Traditional Recipes for Family & Gatherings by Stéphane Reynaud.  You see, the Chef is all about cooking every single part of the animal that’s edible. His favorite dish when in France– tête de veauyou’ll have to look it up because I can’t describe it.  I’m an on-the-fence-vegan/vegetarian as of right now…it must be my new found passion of Orca welfare or just animal welfare in general.

My culinary choices don’t hinder the Chef though.  Rather, I urge him to explore his culinary aspirations.  It was either langue de boeuf or guacamole and birdseed crackers pour moi.  Also, I took comfort in knowing this langue came from a happy bovine which was raised humanely and organically not too many miles north of us.  Only sweet Texas grasses passed over it’s tongue. We’re also practicing our  “dinner menu” for the future BnB we’ll operate one day.  So here it is…you be the judge…on or off the menu?

Langue de boeuf avec sauce au vin blanc:  (beef tongue with white win sauce served over a creamy cauliflower purée)

Oyster River Winegrowers

 

langue de boeuf with white wine

langue de boeuf

 

langue de boeuf, creamy white wine sauce, capers, tarragon and sliced cornichons

table set for two

a table set for deux

langue de boeuf  with capers, tarragon and cornichons

So there you have it…langue de beouf!

Recipe:

organic beef tongue (rinsed well)

boiled for 3 hours in a vegetable stock (stock also included fresh rosemary, thyme, sage and celery)

white wine sauce:  

One tbsp. butter melted, one tbsp. finely chopped shallots- sweated in a sauce pan.  Add one tbsp. flour and cook for 3-5 min.  Deglaze the pan with a half cup of wine, scraping up the bits on the bottom.  Allow it to reduce by half, then add a ladle of cooking stock.  Pour in two tbsp. cream, and simmer until the sauce coats the back of a spoon, and season with salt/pepper.  Finish the sauce by adding thinly sliced cornichons and capers (as many as you like).  Cover the tongue slices with this sauce and sprinkle with fresh tarragon leaves.

cauliflower purée

Organic cauliflower florets (one head) cooked in salted water until very tender, then drained.  Bring back to stove, add two tbsp cream and blend with hand mixer or emulsifier mixer.

So do you understand? Lengua, linger..get it? This was the Chef’s corny idea.  Sorry :-)

The Best of 2013

Tomorrow marks the Pear’s 3rd blog birthday!  It’s incredible to think about the full circle we’ve made in those 3 years…Texas>France>Maine>Texas>???.  It’s even more amazing to think about all the friends and experiences we’ve made along that journey…and the ones that are awaiting to be made.

Here’s a look back at the priceless moments of 2013…

snow hearthad a love affair with snow

PicMonkey Collage4

braved a blizzard named Nemo

above the clouds

unexpected friendships in unexpected places…10,000 ft over New England

Don

fell for a Belgian named Don

sunlit tulips

discovered a new passion… and launched a new business: elissagabriellaphotography.com

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chased the French countryside in search of…

Home of the Chambord Liqueur Royale de France

chateaux

abandoned chateau france

market Collage

Chef at Niort market

local cuisine

Eleanor of Aquitaine

dead royals

cognac avec du Schweppes

cognac avec Schweppes

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a new place for the French Market Maven to call home

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created Chasing French History

Marie Antoinette's theater stage

chased Marie Antoinette with friend Madeleine 

farmhouse

played farm

She can't be disturbed.

Goat cheese and honey

made cheese

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red tulips

was awed by the beauty of spring time in Maine

yellow flower

peony

Oyster River Winery

roadtrip

road-tripped through Texas

Texas Longhorns

The Traveling Pear enjoying our weekend ritual.  Breakfast at Home Kitchen Cafe in Rockland.

The Traveling Pear enjoying our weekend ritual. Breakfast at Home Kitchen Cafe in Rockland.

made it to the pages of the Down East Magazine

Maine island

had a Maine island adventured with true Mainers

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Kitty Kat

was reunited with our Kitty

Kitty at the table

cowboy boots Austin

found our way back home to Texas

orca captivity

became an Orca advocate

And made it another year as a blog!

Thanks for traveling along with us.  We expect 2014 to be epic.  A trip back to Maine, California and Washington state (to chase down our adopted orca name Ocean Sun- yes, you read that correctly..we adopted an orca.) and then a month trek through Spain, France and Italy with the Dollbuckets.   Yeah, you don’t want to miss all that!  Keep the faith…and keep in touch.

xoxo,

TTP

Happy New Year!

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