Well, 2015 has been quite a year. While I may not have been doing much writing, I have done a good bit of wandering. Travel has included a couple trips to Washington, D.C., a couple to Pittsburgh, a couple to Allegan, one to Cleveland, one to San Francisco and what has become the annual road trip to Myrtle Beach with stops in Cincinnati, Asheville, and Knoxville. Throw in a day-long visit to Charleston and I feel like I did my share of travel.
In the middle of the year of wandering, my family moved to a new (to us) house that we are settling into still.
Amid the chaos of moving and travel, I was also able to participate in some pretty amazing culinary activities. I worked with a good friend in the catering of the most interesting wedding reception I have ever seen. It included the roasting of a pig, complete with a “Pig Parade” from the cocktail party to the reception venue. What ultimately made it the most interesting reception was the bridal party’s performing as a band to entertain the attendees after dinner.
I joined a group of online friends from The Salt Cured Pig at a Cajun Boucherie. That is a whole day event that includes the dispatching, butchering and cooking of a pig. We cooked and ate two types of boudin (blanc and noir), head cheese, cracklins, and backbone stew. We also sampled the charcuterie that many of the attendees had prepared and brought to share.
Another event that The Salt Cured Pig hosted was a Charcuterie Jam. This offered me the opportunity to literally rub elbows with one of my culinary heroes, Kate Hill. Kate brought together Dominque Chapolard, a French butcher whose family works with Kate in her cooking school in Camont, France, and Jeffrey Weiss, a chef and butcher trained in the Spanish style, to demonstrate the differences in preparation style of charcuterie from those two countries.
While I have been cooking throughout the year, I haven’t been writing about it very much. As I look forward to 2016, I hope to do more of that. While I know this isn’t the first time I’ve had a similar hiatus, I am looking to write and post more frequently and not look back on the failure to do so in the past.
Here’s to a happy and healthy 2016!!