Monday, September 24, 2018

Water Shut Off,, Hurricanes,

We have to be up somewhat earlier tomorrow as the water is due to be shut off yet again. Need to get our showers in before hand. Of course, as we will be prepared, it probably won't happen. I think they are gradually replacing all the piping in the building - I don't know that for a fact but it seems probably as they were getting lots of leaks and pipe breaks etc. I guess it would take way too long to do the whole lot at once and we would be without water forever.

Heard from another friend in North Carolina that, although there is plenty of water around, everyone is safe. Excellent news. I get the feeling that nobody really believed Florence would cause so much flooding. Considering there was one hurricane, when we lived there, I think it was Floyd but don't quote me, that decided to hang around one part of NC for a few days causing a lot of flood damage, one would think people would remember. However, Googling, it appears to have been in 1999  This picture is the kind of thing I remember seeing on TV at the time.

I must admit I haven't had French Onion Soup in a very long time. I remember particularly, when I was fairly young, a bunch of us used to go to the Kursaal in Ostende, Belgium, which was a kind of casino, theatre, dance hall, and drink and dance til the wee hours. Then we would wander back home stopping at one or other of the cafes and having some French Onion Soup before we ended the night. This recipe is somewhat different and certainly not traditional, but it sounds pretty good to me. Traditionally it is made with beef broth, this one is pork.

French (Canadian) Onion Soup

2 lbs lean slab bacon, in one piece
1 whole pig's foot or two halves
8 large yellow onions—1 whole, 7 sliced 1/4 inch thick
2 gallons of water
1/4 cup rendered pork fat or vegetable oil
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 12-ounce bottles brown ale
6 rosemary sprigs
Freshly ground pepper
12 oz rustic bread, cubed
6 Tbs unsalted butter, melted
6 garlic cloves, peeled
4 cups shredded Gruyère cheese (about 1/2 pound

1. In a pot, cover the bacon, pig's foot and whole onion with the water and boil. Simmer over moderately low heat until the foot is tender, 3 1/2 hours. Strain the broth and return to the pot, reserving the bacon and pig's foot.

2. Boil the broth until reduced to 2 quarts, 25 minutes; skim off the fat or refrigerate overnight and then skim off the fat. Remove all the lean meat from the bacon and pig's foot, cut into bite-size pieces and reserve.

3. Meanwhile, in a large pot, heat the rendered fat. Add the sliced onions and season with salt. Cover and cook over high heat, stirring, until the onions are wilted, 15 minutes. Reduce the heat to moderate and cook until the onions are very soft, 30 minutes. Uncover and cook over moderately high heat, stirring, until the onions are lightly browned, 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the flour until smooth.

4. Return the pot to the burner. Add the strained broth, ale and 4 of the rosemary sprigs and cook over moderately low heat, stirring, until the soup thickens. Simmer the soup for about 15 minutes, until no floury taste remains. Add the reserved meat and season the soup with salt and pepper. Discard the rosemary.

5. Preheat the oven to 350°. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss the bread cubes, melted butter, garlic and the remaining 2 rosemary sprigs; season with salt and pepper. Bake for 30 minutes, until the croutons are crisp. Discard the rosemary and garlic.

6. Preheat the broiler. Ladle the soup into heatproof bowls on a baking sheet and top with the croutons and cheese. Broil for about 2 minutes, until bubbling, and serve.

Servings: 10

Author: Hugue Dufour

Have a great day


  1. People in our area weren't caught by surprise. We remember Matthew all too well.

  2. I hate when they shut wate off for work but that is a small inconvenience compared to the people who have lost so much due to the hurricane. I’m glad your friends are ok and I hope their homes are too.

    1. Can't be helped I guess Birgit, but yes, you are right about it being a small inconvenience in comparison.

  3. We were here for Floyd. (And for Fran.) I never realized how badly it could flood after a hurricane.

    1. We were always lucky Diane. Never experienced a flood from a hurricane.

  4. I think it was Floyd that left us with river flooding once it crept north.

    1. It's difficult to keep track isn't it Liz? Unless you are a meteorologist of course.

  5. One of my friends in SC lives fairly close to a river that hasn't crested yet. She can't believe they are still dealing with this 2 weeks after the storm. I hope it doesn't get to her house.

    1. I hope her house doesn't get flooded either JoJo. It is incredible that it is lasting so long.

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