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This is not a blog which expresses instant opinions on current events. It rather uses incidents, books (old and new), links and papers as jumping-off points for some reflections about our social endeavours.
So old posts are as good as new! And lots of useful links!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Harvest treasures

A day for sensations in the comfort of our cosy stone and wood house in the autumnal mountains – hunkered with a good book in a wicker chair in front of a wood fire in the brick stove; eating local vegetables magically concocted in soups and stews. Pity I can’t quite extend to the Tuscan way of treating beans – left overnight softly bubbling in an old Chianti bottle in the embers of the fire! But I'm just waiting to get hold of a pumpkin to make a soup with a drop of ginger!
And the mixture of grated red beetroot, chopped celery, apple, garlic, pumpkin oil, honey and apple vinegar and touch of lemon offers not only a tasty salad but is so beneficial to organs such as the prostate.

I used to swear by Shopska salad but it has paled by comparison with my current offering - which adds old crumbled toast, an egg, pumpkin oil and generous lashings of Telemen cheese to the usual mix of red onion, tomato, lettuce and garlic.
This encouraged me to look again at one of my favourite celebrations of the older (and better) ways of eating – Beaneaters and Bread Soup which focuses on various individuals in the Tuscan countryside who still stick with the simple and traditional methods – here’s one recipe for bread and beansoup, The bread in the picture, by the way, is the superb large potato one which lasts more than a week! If I can't have the Bulgarian black rye, I'll take this Romanian (actually Hungarian county!) white!   

By coincidence, one of my favourite bloggers’ most recent offering gives marvellous old illuminated treatments of harvest time which includes a medieval document called Tacuinum Sanitatis
And, while we’re celebrating the old ways, let’s raise a glass - or three- (of Murfatlar Feteasca white and Bulgarian red) to the superb photography of Robert Doisneau which usually lie on my desk and some of whose work can be seen here
The last website - online browsing - is a nice find which gives us glimpses of old photographs  and paintings from around the world

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