February 8, 2010

Warm Bones

It’s been quite cold these last few days. In fact, it’s been damn cold.

And I’ll be honest; these past few weekends have presented a challenge of inspiration. Having already raced through my go-to winter comforts- Nonna Soup, Nonna Chile, Nonna Sauce – I’ve been low on ideas. It is not a good sign when you’ve exhausted your stew and soup collection by the end of January. You would think that a girl from New England should know better.

This has resulted in lower than usual levels of production but even so, last weekend butter was made, these buttermilk biscuits were baked and a beautifully fat chicken was roasted.

With weather like this, Nonna’s recommendation is Cognac. “It warms your bones”. Nonna will tell you that there is never a bad time to drink cognac, but generally, there are two really good times to add some honey, a slice a lemon, a cinnamon stick and some sizzling water to this amber liquid to create a hot toddy: when you’re sick, or when it’s really, really cold.

I can tell you from experience, there’s nothing better than following this advice on a chilly Sunday afternoon with a good book, a warm blanket and couple of buttermilk biscuits. And don’t forget to roast a chicken; it really does make all the difference.