Two other items of note recently. One was Portuguese — the bacalhau. At Portugalia I bought one of higher quality salt cod fillets and decided one weekend to soak it for two days and then cook it. I saved the thicker portion to roast the fillet in a manner similar to what I enjoyed 11 years ago in Barcelona. Dusting it with olive oil, pepper, and pimenton, I roasted it in a hot oven, along with a few pieces of pancetta. That was superb. The last bottle of my Simčič Teodor Belo from Slovenia was a good match for the firm, rich flavors.
The rest of the rehydrated fish was flaked, and then mixed with olive oil and purée of potato, to make the Portuguese version of Brandade.
Tonight, however, was a totally different story in a culinary sense. I was looking for a soup I could serve tonight, and I came across this recipe for Soupe des Hortillons from the north of France in the 1987 version of Patricia Wells’ Food Lovers Guide to France.
It was just what I was in the mood for, and it came out as desired — simple, clean, easy-to-digest, and full of flavor.
I tried a Saumur Rouge with it but decided the better match was Aaron’s Unsanctioned, a 50/50 Petite Sirah/ Sangiovese blend from Arizona.