This is one of his laying hens. People sometimes tell Brett the chicken is tough. Brett says, cook the chicken longer. By that he does not mean an hour or two. He means three or four hours.
This particular chicken, cooked with red wine, bacon, garlic and beef broth, braised four hours in the pot. Still, it was on the chewy side. But oh, the flavor. Dark and gamey, that's how I like it.
I had also been watching carefully the progress of the turnips in my garden. I had a hard time getting the turnips to germinate this summer. Rutabagas, too. Was it too hot? Did I not water the seeds enough? I don't know the answer. I planted seeds twice and still did not get a full crop. But the turnips that did finally take hold are beauties. I can see their white flesh rising out of the ground all the way from the front stoop.
The two I pulled yesterday were baseball size, perfectly round with rich soil clinging to the roots. These are not the turnips I would normally plant for greens. But I tasted the leaves anyway and they were delicious--sweet. I decided to include them in a braise with the other greens from our weekly package.
So there you have our totally local meal for the week: coq au vin, turnips mashed with blue cheese and braised greens seasoned with apple cider. Homely, yes, but very satisfying. Just the thing for a winter's night.
The turnips came out so well--sweet, with just a hint of horseradish--that I am convinced to plant more and pay better attention to them in the coming year.