November 2019 Te Contractor’s Advantage
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Warming Up With Delicious Food
As the cooler weather sets in, I can’t think of a better time than cooking a warm, hearty meal. One of my hobbies is to cook elaborate dishes (and then eat them!) — my current “white whale” is cassoulet. A cassoulet is a slow-cooked meat and bean dish with many rich flavors. The traditional French dish can take many hours spread across a few days to complete, and it is one I intend to master. You start by making duck confit: duck cooked in its own fat (don’t tell my doctor). Then you prepare boudin sausages and a ragù sauce. The ragù sauce is a blend of tomatoes and either beef or pork. Boudin sausages are a type of sausage often found in French and European cooking. Once everything is prepped, the cassoulet goes in the oven for several hours. As it cooks, a crust forms over the top. After a while, you push the crust into the dish and continue baking. Here’s the recipe I plan to use: BonAppetit. com/recipe/classic-cassoulet . It’s time-consuming and can often be complex, but I love cooking dishes that have a complexity to them. French cooking is not necessarily difficult, but it does require patience and attention to detail. In many ways, I use cooking as a form of meditation. You’re focused on what you are doing, trying to put everything together just right. The cassoulet has so many different pieces that ultimately come together in the final dish, and when it does come together, there is something extraordinary about it.
need to come together on a case. It’s a lot of hard work, but when everything finally merges, you know your work is going to have a positive impact on your client’s life or business. That said, the biggest difference between cooking and litigation is that the opposing counsel isn’t yelling at you from across the kitchen (please note that I am refraining here from any marital humor). When it comes to Thanksgiving, we don’t stray too far from the traditional. While we won’t be hosting and making dinner this year, in the past, we’ve had a spread of turkey, gravy, potatoes, and the works. What I really find interesting about Thanksgiving dinner is that a lot of people don’t make their own gravy. They opt for store-bought or skip the gravy altogether! A lot of people tend to be intimidated by gravy, as strange as that sounds. But when you cook a turkey for Thanksgiving, you’re typically left with a lot of turkey stock that drips into
the pan. This is perfect for making flavorful gravy. All you really need are equal parts butter and flour to make a roux in a pan, and then you add the stock and a bouquet garni of herbs (a bundle of herbs with bay leaf, thyme, parsley, and others you like). It’s just a matter of bringing those ingredients together and not overcooking it. Of course, every family has their own methods and traditions. No matter what you serve this Thanksgiving, I hope you have a wonderful holiday with plenty of food, family, and friends around the table!
It almost works like litigation. There are so many component pieces that
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