Betau Valley

Betau Valley

Thursday, 29 March 2018

Our 16th Anniversary Do...

We recently feted our 16th anniversary at home so we kept it intimate with a few friends...



Most of the ingredients were actually my "resident" fridge keepings so the preparations wasn't that complicated...

 First starter: Oyster with sauce mignonette, served with dark bread and unsalted butter much like how I used to have them in France.

For the Sauce mignonette:
red wine vinegar
finely chopped shallots
freshly ground pepper
lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
salt
a teaspoon of honey (optional)

Put everything in a mixing bowl and let it sit for a day or 2 in the fridge and you will have yourself a very satisfying oyster condiment.

 Foie gras with ripe mango chutney. I mix freshly chopped ripe mango with ginger and apricot jam, some lemon juice and seasoning.

 Warm French bean salad with Chorizo sausage and quail eggs.

 Slow-braised pork belly in white wine and herbes, served on a bed of smooth potato purée.

 A simple salad with cheese: le Russot

Perennial favourite: tiramisu. The tiramisu is actually a pudding and if you ever bought one in cake or layered cake form, you are not getting the real deal.

Sunday, 31 December 2017

Our annual pre-Christmas dinner with friends...

A forthnight ago, a few days before Christmas, we organized a dinner with friends chez moi, comme d'habitude...



The menu was inspired by some of my previous experience in France...



petite entrée 1
terrine de porc, sauce balsamique, pain grillé
pork terrine, balsamic reduction, toast



petite entrée 2
pomme de terre à la vapeur, beurre truffé
steamed potatoes, truffle-infused butter


petite entrée 3
fleur de courgette, frite
fried zucchini flower


petite entrée 4
crème de champignon d’automne, feuilletée
autumn mushroom cream on puff pastry



*     *     *     *     *

Soupe
soupe de fèves aux chips de bacon, garnie de ciboulette et crème fraiche, croûtons aux herbes de provence
broad bean soup with bacon chips, garnished with chives and sour cream, croutons flavoured with herbes de provence


*     *     *     *     *

entrée principale
poitrine de porc au vin blanc, legumes provençales, sauce aux pommes
pork belly in white wine, provencal vegetable stew, apple sauce


*     *     *     *     *

fromage
Brie, salade de tomates cerises et du jardin au vinaigrette
Brie, served with cherry tomato gems and garden salad, dressed in vinaigrette


*     *     *     *     *


dessert
fruit cake de noël, sirop d’orange, chantilly au parfum de fleur d’orangier
Christmas fruit cake, orange syrup, chantilly with orange flower blossom

*     *     *     *     *

sélection de thé exceptionnel,
chocolat
selection of exceptional teas,
chocolate

Saturday, 9 December 2017

Unplanned meet up with the Sultan Tit

Today I chanced upon this very beautiful pair of Sultan Tit, Melanochlora sultanea at Fraser's Hills with my friend Pascal as we were doing our business photographing moths attracted to lights the night before. They were very brazen and came to us taking the moths from the bushes and grass...









The Sultan Tit is an umnistakable bird because of its bright canary yellow crest and the entire undersides contrasting with its gleaming blue-black plumes.