Better than last weekend!
I passed this sporting goods establishment on hwy 121 in Sonoma Valley on my last trip into wine country. You can imagine my disappointment at it being ‘close.’
Edit in: I particularly like the subtle details in this photo: the wicker trunk, the pitch fork holding up the sign post and the blender bottom. Do you think maybe it’s the bottom half of a bass-o-matic? I’m thinkin’ that Jake deserves an honorary southern passport with official good-ole-boy status.
Actually, the only thing southern about this risotto was the cook and the Arkansas grown arborial rice. If you read the cookbooks and listen to the Italians, you would think they were the only rice growers in the world, but I’m tellin’ y’all that the Arkansas arborial is the real thing. If you’ve never cooked a risotto, try this:
½ cup onion (minced)
2 cloves garlic (minced)
1 to 1.5 cup shiitake mushroom sliced about ¼ “
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1.5 cups short grain risotto rice, unwashed (I used Arborial grown in Arkansas)
1 cup dry white wine (warm)
4 cups chicken stock (heated)
2 tablespoons butter
1/3 to 1/2 cup good parmesan reggiano
Warm the chicken stock in a sauce pan. Gently saute the onion and garlic with EVO in a sauté pan that has a lid (for later). After a couple of minutes, add the mushrooms and cook until they have soaked up some EVO but are still firm. Remove the aromatics and mushrooms and set aside, leaving as much oil and good stuff in the pan as possible. Turning the heat down to medium for the remainder of the dish, add the rice and stir until well coated. Don’t brown the rice but cook until well coated with oil and starting to clear (6 to 8 minutes)…stirring often.
De-glaze the pan by pouring warm (NOT COLD) white wine into the pan and reducing until almost all the liquid is gone, stirring often. Repeat this step 4 more times (1 cup at a time) using the warmed chicken stock, each time reducing until almost gone and stirring often. With the last cup of stock add mushrooms and aromatics back to the pan. After reducing the last cup of stock, the rice should be done or at least al dente (almost done but still firm to the tooth). Add butter and parmesan to help the starch along with a creamy finish. Taste and season if needed, but usually the stock, cheese and butter have added all the salt needed. If al dente, remove from heat and cover until ready to serve and it will finish in the pan, otherwise serve it up in a simple, flat bowl. Remember the final texture should be creamy and a little moist but still firm, not flowing on the plate. Enjoy!
This beautiful little church, Canton Bend UMC is in northern Wilcox County, Alabama between Katherine and Camden on Hwy 28 just off the Alabama River.
I wanted some images from inside the church but it was locked up tight. Using the angled viewscreen on the camera, I held it high and placed the lens directly against the wavy panes in the old leaded windows, depending solely on the camera’s autofocus and autoexposure settings. The following images are the result and an excellent example, albeit unintentional, of internal reflection. With the camera lens tight against the glass, the recorded peripheral reflections are from the internal reflection of the glass pane. The angle of incidence of the peripheral images (grass, sky, trees, edges of the camera, etc.) is still great enough that they travel through the front surface of the pane but are reflected off the posterior interface of the pane back into the camera lens. It made for some interesting images and at at least one self-portrait of my forehead.