Tag: bird

The photo of the year: the bird that resists the storm – Italian Cuisine

The photo of the year: the bird that resists the storm

It is the image that won the National Geographic photo contest in the animal world category: David Francescangeli took it in his home garden, in Terni

When the wind began to blow hard on the snow in the garden in the Martani mountains, in Cesi, province of Terni, a small common verdone, a passerine bird of the family of finches, has pointed the legs and he resisted, proud and stiff, to the storm. David Francescangeli, amateur photographer, owner of the house overlooking the snow-covered garden, rushed downstairs to immortalize the scene so solemn. He never imagined that his photo would win the photo contest of the National Geographic Italy in the animal world category.

Instead, the image, taken in Terni, was chosen by the magazine for its intensity and drama, and because it is perfect metaphor of the resistance of the environment to international policies that do not respect it enough. «The photo conveys the extreme force of nature and the bird's struggle for survival in extreme conditions. Against the wind with half-closed eyes that is planted there on the ground not to be taken away. Anyone of us, facing nature, its strength and its beauty, is a small being. We can only do everything to respect it and not be overwhelmed .

In his garden, Francescangeli has a bird feeder. "That February morning I could not go to work because of the wind and snow. It was about 8 o'clock and in front of the house I saw some little birds looking for shelter, the tits on the trees and the fringillidae on the ground, unable to fly. I lay on the ground in the snow hiding behind the backpack, I made the telephoto lens go sideways and I framed the green, he explained in the text that he sent to the magazine along with the photo.

An image that National Geographic has chosen for several reasons: why «inspires tenderness, but at the same time perfectly synthesizes the great resilience that characterizes the animals, even the smallest .

A Thanksgiving Side Note

Thanksgiving is almost here, and we’ll assume you already have a great turkey and gravy recipe, so today we are focusing on the side dishes (btw, if you are still sans bird recipe, don’t panic, and just check out our critically acclaimed, two-part video series, How to Make Turkey and Gravy).

Everyone knows, it’s not a great turkey that makes the meal, it’s what you pair it with. What good is a beautiful bird sitting next to a bunch of so-so sides? With that in mind, here’s a little collection of thanksgiving appropriate dishes from days gone by. Don’t let the poor producton value on the older videos fool you, these are some great sides, and would make a lovely addition to your holiday spread. Enjoy!

Creamed Spinach

Creamy Corn Custard

Pecan and Apricot Sourdough Bread Stuffing

Green Bean and Blue Cheese Gratin

Lime and Chipotle Glazed Sweet Potatoes

Celery Root and Potato Puree

Cold Broccoli Salad

Cheesy Broccoli Gratin

Butter Roasted Cauliflower

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Salt-Roasted Chicken – Tastes Like Chicken

There’s no mystery why “Chicken” is one of the most popular
recipe searches ever. Everyone loves chicken, but it’s easy to get tired of, so we’re always on the lookout for new things to try. 

The problem is we get so tied up in adding things, that we
forget how amazing roast chicken can be when we take things away…like
everything, except a very generous dusting of kosher salt. 

When you prep a
chicken like this, and roast it in a very hot oven, the bird has no choice but
to cook and crisp up in its own juices, which results in very moist, flavorful
meat. Thomas Keller, who helped popularize this minimalist method,
argues that cooking the thighs/legs as quickly as possible in a very hot oven
prevents the breasts from drying out, and I tend to agree. 

Of course, no matter
how juicy and chickeny your chicken tastes, it can only get better garnished
with a little spoonful of thyme butter sauce. I wanted to remind everyone how simple it is to make these
quick, butter-based pan sauces. If you know how to make one, you know how to
make a thousand. 

The important thing to remember is that any time there’s a pan
sitting around crusted with caramelized meat drippings, you’re always only
three minutes away from a world-class sauce. I hope you give this a try soon.

Ingredients for four portions:
1 big chicken, about 3 1/2 to 4 pounds
lots of kosher salt (coat the entire surface of the bird,
inside and out, with the salt, being extra generous on the breasts)
– Roast at 450 F. for 50-60 minutes
For the sauce:
1 tbsp thyme leaves
1 lemon, juiced
1/4 cup chicken broth (plus all extra juices from rested
chicken plate)
2 tbsp cold butter cut in 4 pieces
salt and pepper to taste
cayenne, to taste
(Note: I’m totally guessing at measurements here, since you
kind of just splash stuff in. Use the force.)

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