What are you going to do today?

Beautiful labels :heart_eyes:

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Just checked in to fly to Chicago with Lady Brentw1 tomorrow.

Off for thanksgiving with our son and our US family and also getting to meet the prospective daughter in laws family :heart:

I don’t quite know how but I’ve managed to pack 9 bottles!

I’ll unpack and post the picture when we get there and report in!


Stage one of making the Christmas cake. Boiling up and simmering the fruit with sugar, butter and citrus zest and juice. It’s already beginning to smell like Christmas!


A drizzly dour day today so we went to Tarbes to see the matinee showing of the newly released film La Passion de Dodin Bouffant, inspired by the 1924 eponymous novel by Marcel Rouff. I think, in turn it was inspired by the life and times of Escoffier, and that the modern slang for “grub” in French is “bouffe”.

Anyway, set in 1885 France, vaguely in the Loire Valley, it stars the real-life couple Juliette Binoche and Benoit Magimel as they create a succession of sumptuous classical French feasts convincingly in a contemporary kitchen. There is also plenty of references to wine - Clos Vougeot, Krug etc. A side pastime will be to decide if the bottles look authentic or not !!

Anyway - it’s a glorious visual 140 minute spectacle, the simple plot means that you don’t really need to follow all the French dialogue, and done so very very convincingly. There’s even a skills test for prospective cook recruits as in Masterchef !!

I don’t know if there’s an English release, but it has a title and it won best Director at Cannes this year. The Pot-au-Feu - Wikipedia

One head-scratch for me though was no mention of phylloxera, which hit Burgundy around 1878, only 8 years before the putative film setting, so the diners would have been supping well-matured pinot from a diminishing supply.

But - quand meme - an utterly compelling and fabulous watch and ideal for gourmets and wine aficionados alike


Magimel sounds like an incredible kitchen gadget that would have helped Escoffier to do something pointless, such as spiralise vegetables :grinning:.

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Recovering from flu I have spent the afternoon bathed in these new Polish composer to me, Friedman and Michalowski and their charming , spirited, rustic on occasions, Mazurki. Ludmil Angelo’s bring an authentic touch to them throughout and the recording is finely balanced. As a life time lover of the genre( Chopin’s remains unsurpassed) these are a very welcome addition to the library and I shall be digging out the music where possible for more hands on study.

…picked up from BBC3’s Record Review a couple of weeks ago. Available on BBC Sounds still.


Rounded off the day with a snap of the sunset from the house balcony. Have great weekend everyone.
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Sorted out the wine fridge - no forgotten treasures but plenty now ready to drink at the front for easy access.

Hot smoked some trout for pâté.

Off to see Jools Holland and band in concert, with a bottle of Beaujolais Nouveau at Côte first.


:joy: covered “bouffe”/ grub in conversational French today!

Attended a tasting at Majestic last night, because…why not.

19 wines on offer, including 5 of Majestic’s Chosen or Toast & Honey ranges. Well organised, if a little crowded.

A couple of comedy moments involving a small group of hoorays, downing Olarra Reserva Rioja. Apparently, it’s easy for Spain to produce good wine, because they only produce one wine :man_facepalming:

Highlights of the small selection on offer for me were the Auntsfield Single Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2022
Classic NZ SB

And the Gonzalez-Byass Alfonso Oloroso sherry

Plus the Hidalgo Pastrana Manzanilla, but that’s already a favourite.

Cheers :wine_glass:


If anyone is tempted by this, you should resist.


Haven’t had the SB, but have had a few vintages of their Pinot Noir and always enjoyed it. Don’t think I’ve ever seen the Pinot at Majestic. I think they are a pretty decent producer at the price point.


Afternoon all,

Just the one cake baked this morning for tomorrow’s walk.

It’s a Calabrian Torta di Noci (walnut tart).

Simple recipe. 340g walnuts. 4 large eggs. 200g sugar. I used some lemon zest mixed with finely chopped candied lemon. Added some limoncello (why not!). No butter needed as walnuts rendered oil.


Sounds lovely - is it ground walnuts, or chopped?


Ground in a food processor.

Mix of fine and small rubble (maybe 2 mm across).

So I’d assume the rubble add a little texture and bite?

Will find out tomorrow.

Not a cake eater personally and not a nut fan…

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I’ve seen chestnut flour being used recently in programmes etc

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Prompted by @Graham74 making mince pies last weekend, I made a batch of mincemeat. This should last me this year and next.

Blimey. But you make all these absolutely mouthwatering cakes :exploding_head:



Lovely looking homemade mincemeat. Bravo mon ami.

I will freely admit to it being a little bit bizarre.

However. I think essentially, at heart, I’m a “feeder”.

I love to cook. Especially for friends and folks.

I made a porcini risotto today with medium rare venison steak.

Half to a walking buddy who needs building up and half for me.



Morning all,

One of the Monday Walkers has a house in Brittany. There’s a fig tree in the garden.

He very kindly brought me a bag of figs. Some had gone over but I managed to rescue 850g of them.

So if someone gives you figs then make fig jam!

Chopped added juice and pips of two lemons with the four halves. Added 400g of sugar and a decent splash of cooking port. Mixed.

I will leave them in the fridge today and tonight to macerate.



Cutting and burning willow today with YWT, the fire was crying out for some sausages, and perhaps a beaujolais.