Saturday night Bernard braised a rack of pork in a marvelous dozen little artichokes, a few golden beets, garlic, chicken stock, white wine and some fresh chervil (also known as “gourmet’s parsley”). The sweetness of pork and beets nicely balanced the artichoke’s natural bitterness.
He cooked it in a huge cast-iron oval Dutch oven resembling the iron-clad USS Monitor. Manufactured by the venerable French ironmongers Cousances, now owned by Le Creuset, the pot seemed to lend its own unique flavors to the stew.
Fillet of a fenny snake
In the cauldron boil and bake;
Eye of newt and toe of frog,
Wool of bat and tongue of dog
How can a pot contribute to flavor? Because it is never washed with soap.
While Kathy, good American girl, dutifully scrubs kitchen pots with soap and pad, Bernard the Frenchman gives his iron pot one hot rinse and calls it quits until tomorrow.