At the supermarket, a package of industrially produced food caught my eye : ravioli with Gorgonzola and walnuts. Hmm, my hand almost reached out but my head said “I could make that”. So all I bought was some Gorgonzola.
I reflected for a while about what kind of sauce would best accompany this dish. Not tomato, not just butter. I decided to use Waldorf salad as my inspiration and cooked some apples down to applesauce, then added some celery, a small shallot, salt and the seeds from one pod of cardamom. I did not let the celery cook too long as I wanted a crunchy element.
I shelled and finely chopped ½ cup walnuts which came to about 50 grams and blended them with the 150g package of Gorgonzola.
My usual pasta, one egg per person, as much flour as it will take.
I had extra filling which I put aside for another day.
At the last minute, I added two large dollops of crème fraîche and some pepper to the sauce.
So many gray skies
Make me blue
But as it’s a holiday
What can I do?
I’ll make a cake, I decided. We had a very nice crop of walnuts this year. There was a cake we used to eat sometimes a long time ago, between 35 and 40 years ago. I feel like I have escaped from a history book with all these preposterous numbers of years.
On the way between where we lived and where my parents-in-law lived, one could find at one of the rest areas this delicious confection consisting mostly of nuts with a bit of pastry to cover and caramel to hold together. Walnuts in French are called “noix de Grenoble” and this cake could be found when passing close to that area. My mother-in-law was fond of walnuts and so am I.
I did a google for “gâteaux aux noix”. Just looking at the images was quite cheering. The one that corresponded to my search is actually from Switzerland.
It takes a lot of nuts—300 grams, about 2 cups. I’m glad there were two of us to shell them.
Up until about age 23, I thought gravy came in an envelope or maybe in a soup can. I have cooked and baked a lot since then but I am not very experienced with caramel. I carefully followed the directions and exercised patience—it turned out good.
This is supposed to make 12 servings, each one over 500 calories. Oh boy.
The recipe is here:
Today was definitely a nutfall day. After a bit of rain followed by breezy sun, they seemed to be everywhere. If I don’t pick them up right away, something else carries them off. Sometimes I find nut tree seedlings in strange places. Sometimes we run over a few with a car, a bit oversized for a nutcracker. If they aren’t too dirty, I eat those ones anyway. It’s a pleasure to go scuffing around under the tree, trying to spy the oval brown fruits.
My husband says when you are looking for a bakery, you don’t notice the post office. I watched a video about mushroom hunting. They said at first one doesn’t see them. One must adjust and put on their mushroom eyes. I tell myself “put your nut eyes on”. Not to be confused with googly eyes.
It can also be the case in our relationships with others that we see what we are looking for. If we look for peace, virtue, fraternity, it is much easier to find those qualities.
“On every occasion you shall keep your sense and moderation, you shall take time to make decisions, for I alone am outside time, My Strength alone unbends short; you shall derive your strength from your patience and from the advice you will take; you shall get some rest, for tiredness deprives man of his mind; you shall not have corporeal eyes which judge and covet, you shall have the eyes of the prophet who saw My Justice, who trembled in the face of My Light, and who cried over the clots of My Wounds.”
The Revelation of Arès 35/7-9