I don't have much of a sweet tooth.
So when it comes to discovering various recipes and homemade food stuffs on Pinterest, I tend to gravitate more towards the artisan breads and vegetable soups, than I do the “best cookie recipes ever” or “that certain double chocolate coconut cake that tastes just like the one at that famous restaurant.” (Though, I admit, I am a devotee to this particular Snicker doodle cake with brown sugar butter cream icing. Best. Cake. Ever. Recipe here).
When I stumbled upon this savory recipe for Daube Provençale (French Beef Stew with Red Wine), I immediately wanted it. Desperately so. The photographs were stunning. The dish looked delicious. And as soon I learned that husband wasn't going to be home till late last night, I undertook the task of crafting this warm winter meal that takes over three hours to simmer and stew on the stove.
For my own part, meal preparation has shifted now that the sun is completely set and the air outside is dark and cold when I leave my office after five. Watching my breath cloud the night air as I walk home, I pull up the collar of my favorite black and white houndstooth pea-coat to ward off the November chill.
The thing about cooking in a dark kitchen in November when food photography relies so heavily on natural light, is that the pictures you take hardly seem worth sharing.
But despite the fact that husband wasn't home until eight, despite the fact the pictures are dark and nothing compared to the original photos, this particular Daube Provençale was a delightful success. Simple flavours and rich red wine.
I'll take the tangy aroma of fresh thyme and reduced cabernet sauvignon over sugar cookies or vanilla cake any day. Hands down.