red lion inn blog
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Alberg Rants…about comfort food
Ahhhhh… quiet time! The moment when we finally catch a break from the constant slam of holiday visitors and get a chance to relax and evaluate what just happened. We plan how to make the next rush a little bit smoother, which dishes can be tweaked to taste a little better and how we can improve the guest experience more.
Nothing helps to stimulate thoughts more than the feeling of comfort. And at this time of year, easy comfort comes in the form of food — the aromas and tastes of long-cooking stews and braises simmering for hours, sipping aromatic libations with spice and citrus.
My childhood memories involve my mom starting the crock-pot at 7 am (just before booting me out in the cold to catch the school bus), and filling it with chicken, thyme and root vegetables from the cellar – a hodgepodge of color and texture.
Flash ahead 8 hours to running in the door — always through the kitchen — and catching the aromatics of chicken stock and thyme. I remember the anticipation of opening the cover to see the result of the morning’s ingredients and with every inhale of those delicious smells, I felt a moment of relaxed anticipation.
The coolest thing about being a latchkey kid was having first dibs on the crock-pot creation. Whether potpie, venison stew or beef chili, the smell and taste always warmed me inside.
Although I don’t use a crock-pot in the kitchen at the Red Lion Inn, the cooking technique is similar. We use great, fresh ingredients and cook them long and slow, a method that affords us to make lesser cuts of protein sing more loudly with time. Looking to get into the comfort food mood this winter? Take a look at our new prix-fixe Winter Warming Menu.
Check out our recipe for Chicken Pot Pie, one of my favorite childhood food memories. Enjoy!