A Couple of Tarts

We should look for someone to eat and drink with before looking for something to eat and drink, for dining alone is leading the life of a lion or wolf. ~ Epicurus

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Northern Exploring


This past week I escaped the heat and humidity of NYC and took a road trip north with RFC. We went up into Vermont, towards Burlington. Our first stop was in Putney, Vermont, to have lunch at Curtis's Barbecue (Route 5, exit 4 off I-91). We found this place courtesy of Jane and Michael Stern's recently revised book, Road Food. RFC opted for the pork sandwich, while I went for the small order of ribs. Both were right off the barbecue, which was manned by Curtis himself. I am usually not one to order ribs because I am almost always disappointed with the amount of meat. Curtis's ribs had a thick slab of meat that practically fell off the bone. Yum! They were literally finger-licking good.

After our pit stop in Putney, we were off to Underhill State Park, where we spent a couple of nights camping. Unfortunately, it rained most of the time, but it was still beautiful and incredibly green. We got to experience an all-night thunder and lightening storm from the comfort of RFC's little tent, which really came through by keeping us dry despite the torrential downpour. I tried my hand at campsite cooking for the first time in probably ten years. One night we had the standard mac and cheese, but the second night experimented with couscous and canned chicken. We threw in some canned carrots and beans, curry powder and dried garlic and onion, and voila!: a tasty, filling dish that we devoured after our mountain hike.

Next, we treated ourselves to a night at a B&B in Burlington. A trip to Magic Hat Brewery was in order, being that their Number 9 is one of RFC's favorites. You can get unlimited shots of whatever beers they have on tap, which included a couple that aren't available in NYC yet. For dinner, we had tasty pizza at American Flatbread-Burlington Hearth. They serve a thin crust rendition with a variety of toppings to choose from, many of which use local ingredients. The next day we took advantage of the beautiful weather, rented bikes, and explored the amazing bike path that runs alongside Lake Champlain. We may not haved spotted Champ, the lake monster, but we did have gorgeous views.

RFC and I went back into New York, to Troy, to visit his friend K. I hadn't been to this part of the state and was charmed by the architecture of the town. There were houses akin to what you find in parts of Brooklyn Heights and Park Slope. K. was a lovely host and took us to the weekly farmer's market where we sampled fresh baked pastries and Indian food made right at one of the tables. K. also showed us her plot at the community garden and we harvested potatoes, onions, corn and parsley which later became the makings for a late afternoon barbecue. I have always thought there is nothing like the taste of tomatoes and strawberries fresh from the garden. Now I have to add to that list potatoes practically right out of the ground. To cook them, K. simply sliced them, added a few slices of onion, and sprinkled it all with rosemary and olive oil. This was wrapped up in a tin foil packet and placed on the grill for about 30 minutes. You can't go wrong with this combination. (Thanks K. for all your hospitality!)

Our road trip ended with one last stint of camping at Lake George. We joined a few of RFC's buddies, one of which took on most of the cooking duties. We were car camping here, so meals were much more elaborate. Bacon, eggs and potatoes came off the campfire grill one morning and fluffy, perfectly browned french toast the next. I got to try my first garbage plate late one night made from the breakfast leftovers, plus a can of chili, some sausages and a few handfuls of tortilla chips. It was probably best I couldn't really see what it looked like with the light of the campfire, but I can honestly say it was delicious, and that's not just because I had had a few beers.
K.

1 Comments:

Blogger ruby said...

Sounds fun. Sometimes I camp out underneath the TV in my house.

Ruby

10:17 AM  

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