Thursday, August 23, 2007

Call me Cheesy...

The chicken browned quite nicely and the shallots gave off their comforting smell as I prepared to pour in the chicken broth and white wine. Mmmm…this dish—braised chicken and red potatoes in a tarragon broth—had all the comforting smells of chicken soup with an added whiff of something more exotic. Of course, the exoticism could have been due to the tarragon or the fact that the white wine I had on hand to cook with was Carlo Rossi Chablis….

Since this is a first entry, I guess I should hold off on the food and talk about myself for a moment. I’m a (very) recent graduate from a women’s college and I’m living in Philadelphia for the time being as I work, muddle around the world, and decided what to do with myself. And I love food…talking about food, eating food, making food, looking at food, dreaming…you get the picture, right?

Now I’m not an expert chef, nor have I been cooking avidly for very long—only about a year. But I like to experiment and play with recipes, even if they do go badly sometimes (there’s a curry turkey dish that I made on accident that was special indeed…). And combined with my fellow cheeseordeath writer’s love of food (and our mutual passion for cheese), we decided it would be fun to give ourselves a forum by which we communicate our food joys and sorrows with the larger world. So here it is. Welcome to I’ll call myself Cheesy (it works, really it does).

So, the braised chicken dish actually turned out really well. It was like a mix between a stew and a soup—without being either in reality. It was aromatic and hot and comforting, really just like a slightly more sophisticated version of your grandma’s chicken soup (in fact, I made it for a friend—let’s call him the Critic—who said it reminded him of something homey and family-oriented but he couldn’t put his finger on it). It wasn’t too salty, and the chicken and potatoes were nice and tender. The broth, however, was the real kicker. It was SO GOOD. It was robustly delicate (if such a thing can happen) and full of flavor.

I liked this dish so much that I’m going to experiment with it. I think that beef, beef broth, and red wine would make a different, yet just as yummy, variation on the recipe. I’m looking forward to it. I’ll post the recipe later, if wanted. Make sure to serve with a nice piece of crusty bread!

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