While it was indeed a lovely drive up the Clearwater river yesterday on the way home from Seattle, it made for a very long day in the car — I didn’t get back until nearly ten and I was all road buzzy when I got here. But today was lovely — walked the dog, did some grocery shopping, and then tried to decide what to do with the requisite homecoming chicken.
I seem to be compelled to cook a chicken after returning from a trip. I’ve written any number of times about my mystical belief in the power of a well-cooked chicken to make everything right in the world, but I have to admit, I went back and forth on whether or not to do a chicken. I have so much food in my freezers already — half a pig, for instance, and there’s a substantial amount of lamb left, and even some cut-up chicken. But no, nothing else would really do so Raymond-the-dog and I walked to the grocery store and bought a chicken. It doesn’t feel like home until I’ve cooked a chicken.
Tonight is Poulet Bonne Femme or white coq au vin — a whole chicken, browned all over, then cooked with onions, carrots, parsnips (they were in the sale bin at the grocery this am), garlic, spices and a little white wine and spices. The whole house is beginning to smell like wine and chicken, the dogs are sleeping in their respective spots, and I’m reading Home: A Novel by Marilynne Robinson. All is indeed well with the world.