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Braised Chicken with Herbes de Provence

The key to this recipe is the vinegar. Somehow it brings the chicken braise into a complex satisfying depth, a perfect answer to chilly winter weather eating. The Agresto I’ve used here is made with grapes and honey but you might try the Vergus Rouge, or experiment with another of Olde Hudson’s sweet vinegars.

Although I first created this recipe last fall I’ve found myself craving and serving this dish as it turned colder and substituting yellow peppers and on-the-vine-tomatoes for the local sweet multi colored peppers and heirloom tomatoes that I carry in their season.

It generously serves 4.


  • 2 large bone-in, skin-on Misty Knoll chicken breasts
  • Herbes de Provence from Frontier Dried Herbs
    2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil (La Castellina)
    1 Red Onion – coarse-chopped
    2 large yellow peppers (or 4 small, sweet, multi colored in season) coarse-chopped
    3 garlic cloves crushed and coarse-chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons Agresto Vinegar or a sweet vinegar like Vergus Rouge
    2 Cups Aneto Chicken Stock
  • 2 large tomatoes (heirloom or tomatoes-on-the-vine)
    2 Tablespoons Parsley – chopped
    Salt and Pepper

Season both sides of the chicken breasts with salt and pepper and the skin side only with a generous amount of Herbes de Provence. Set aside

In a braising pan, gently heat 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil.  Add peppers, red onions, garlic, a pinch of salt and sauté until they begin to soften. Add 2 tablespoons Agresto Vinegar – stir to combine and cook for another minute. Add the seasoned chicken breasts – skin side up.
Add 2 cups Aneto Chicken Stock around the chicken – DO NOT POUR OVER THE CHICKEN.
Bring to a boil, cover and cook on low 45 minutes to 1 hour. Check half way through and gently stir.

Remove the chicken from the pan. Remove and discard the skin – slice the chicken from the bones into large chunks. Return the meat to the broth in the braising pan.

Coarse chop the tomatoes and add to the pan along with 1 tablespoon chopped parsley, salt and pepper to taste.  Stir to combine all of the ingredients and with heat at medium-low  cover the pan.  Cook 10 more minutes until the tomatoes soften. Serve with steamed or mashed potatoes.

These ingredients can be found at Olde Hudson
Check at oldehudson.com for online availability.dena-signature



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Aromatic Shrimp with Herbs


I’ve been serving this with spinach sautéed in grapeseed oil and garlic and I think it exemplifies how we can make an excellent meal with unexpected flavor pleasures in a very short time.

At the end of the day this comes together quickly and the deep flavors are perfect for a winter weekday dinner. This is not your summer-light-garlic-and-lemon-shrimp but a dish that warms and pleasures and marks the good end to a well-spent day. This recipe serves two.


  • Ingredients
  • 12 large Panama shrimp peeled and deveined
    1 tablespoon Mae Ploy Asian Sauce for Seafood
  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
    1 garlic clove minced
    1/2 medium red onion minced
    1 tablespoon fresh peeled minced ginger
    2 strips of lime rind minced
    Pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Herb Mixture
    1 teaspoon fresh minced basil
    1 teaspoon fresh minced cilantro
    4 mint leaves minced
  • 2 tablespoons Sake

Marinate the Shrimp in the Mae Ploy Asian Sauce for Seafood for 15 minutes.

Heat the grapeseed oil in a sauté  pan and add the garlic, red onion, fresh ginger, lime rind and red pepper flakes and cook together over low heat until the onion is translucent.  Add ½ of the herb mixture and sauté together one minute.

Add the marinated shrimp to pan, raise heat to medium and cook 1 minute until they begin to turn color. Increase heat to high, add the Sake and the remainder of the herb mixture and cook, stirring until Sake is reduced. Lower heat and continue to cook until shrimp are slightly pink and cooked through. Don’t overcook.



Bring pot of water to boil.  Add 1 tablespoon sesame oil and the buckwheat noodles. Cook until al dente. Remove from heat, drain and rinse under cold water, place in pan with remaining dressing ingredients, toss and reheat until warm.

These ingredients can be found at Olde Hudson
Check at oldehudson.com for online availability.














Aromatic Lamb Stew

Another reason we love to cook:

Cooking connects us to the world around us and these cold and beautiful days remind me to enjoy my kitchen — take the time to braise and stew and savor the deep flavors we all crave in winter.

Spend a glorious afternoon recreating this go-to, winter-worthy recipe.

It takes just a little time and love to prep, a little longer to stew and fill our home with comforting aromas and when we sit down at the table satisfy our palettes with rich, deep flavors.
I’ve been singing this ode to winter for years! This recipe serves four.


  • Ingredients
  • 2 lbs. lamb cubed, sinew removed
  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil, salt & pepper
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion finely chopped
  • 2 large leeks, white parts only, cleaned, thinly sliced
  • 1 small red pepper minced
  • 3 stalks celery,  cut into 1/4″ pieces
  • 3 carrots, cut into  1/4″ pieces
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 2 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, cubed in 1/4″ pieces
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8  teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon coriander
  • 1/4 teaspoon Chinese 5-spice powder
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 cups beef stock
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 1 large tomato, seeded and coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup corn kernels
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano, minced
  • 2 teaspoons fresh Italian parsley, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil, salt  and pepper to taste


Sprinkle lamb with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil in medium stockpot. Sprinkle lamb with flour and sauté until brown. Transfer lamb and all juices to plate, clean the pot and continue.

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in stockpot over medium-low heat. Add onions, leeks, red pepper, celery, carrots, garlic, salt. Cook on low heat for approximately 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Do not brown the garlic.

Add white wine. Bring to a boil and reduce. Add the potatoes. Sauté for 5 minutes until well blended and potatoes start to look glazed.

Add sautéed lamb and lamb juice, salt, cayenne pepper, coriander and chinese-5 spice powder. Mix well until nicely blended.

Add 1 cup chicken stock, 1 cup beef stock and 1/4 cup red wine. Bring to a boil.

Add chopped tomato, corn kernels, oregano, parsley, thyme, additional 1/2 cup of chicken stock and the sesame oil.

Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Reduce heat to simmer. Cover and cook for 1 hour, until potatoes are tender. Taste for seasoning.

These ingredients can be found at Olde Hudson. Check at oldehudson.com for online availability.






Grilled Bronzini and Chopped Summer Salad

These  silver-skinned,  salt  water Aegean  fish  weigh  from 3/4 lb to 1 1/4 lbs and come to Olde Hudson overnight from the Aegean. Their delicate, fresh flavor is the perfect foil for the complex, chutney-like chopped summer salad  below. If you want the salad to be less creamy omit the avacado.

I hope you try this Flash Recipe — a delicious minimalist meal made quickly with the best ingredients

 For the fish:

  • Ingredients
  • 2 scaled and cleaned Bronzini
  • Salt and Pepper (I used Red Hawaiian Sea Salt and a blend of black and red peppercorns)
  • 2 sprigs each of fresh sage and rosemary
  • olive oil for drizzling

Heat your grill to medium high.  Rinse fish and pat dry then season the cavity with salt and pepper and add the sage and rosemary sprigs.  Season the skin with salt and pepper and drizzle with good olive oil.  Grill quickly on medium-high heat for 4 minutes per side.

 For the summer salad: 


  • Finely chopped medium tomato, 1/2 red onion; 1/3 English Cucumber
  • 1/2 yellow pepper, 1/2 avocado, 1/2 peach
  • basil and a squeeze of lemon (to taste)
  • Dress with La Castellina Olive OilUnio Cabernet Sauvignon Vinegar 
  • salt and pepper
  • fold gently together for a perfect partner for the grilled Bronzini








Spaghetti with Fresh Tomatoes,  Grilled Little Neck Clams and Pancetta

serves 2


  • 3 dozen little neck clams
  • 3 slices La Quercia Pancetta Americana
  • Kernels from 1 ear of corn (just cooked in boiling water for 2 minutes)
  • 2 medium tomatoes, chopped
  • 12 sungold tomatoes (or other cherry-size tomatoes), chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped
  • 1/2 lb Rustichella Spaghetti
  • 2 tablespoons La Castellina Olive Oil
  • 1 tablespoon Vermont Butter & Cheese unsalted butter
  • Salt & Pepper (to taste)

Heat grill to medium and place cleaned clams in a foil pan on top of grill. You’ll need to watch them here and as they open, remove from pan and place in bowl – remove and discard shells. Save and strain the clam juice from the grill pan through a fine cheese cloth lined strainer into a bowl.

With the grill still on medium cook the pancetta until crisp, about 1 minute, then remove and break into small pieces.

Meanwhile- While the pasta water is coming to a boil, combine both kinds of tomatoes, basil,  corn kernels,  olive oil, salt and pepper. Let rest until the pasta is ready, then using tongs remove from pasta pot and add immediately to the tomato mixture in the bowl.

Add 1 tablespoon butter and the clams – toss. Add the clam juice – toss again to combine. Add the panchetta and lightly toss, once again.


Why we care about

Why we care about Small Batch and Farmstead

We love innovation and variety in our diet and what better way to get it than from the creative efforts of small batch and farmstead producers.

The evolution of a two-tier food world — with all the familiar knocks against mass produced foods and their dumbed down taste — makes the adventure of finding and bringing to the public the best that smGetAttachment.aspxall batch artisans produce my greatest pleasure at Olde Hudson.

I aim to showcase innovation, creativity and just plain good taste in my shop. I look for products born of a desire to be fresh and healthy and delicious. I look for producers from the neighborhood (the Hudson Valley) and surroundings (the Northeast) and the best from farther afield… Europe’s best cheesemakers with custom and history behind them. I’m always aware that these artisans, who work for themselves, tend to take as many pains as I do in order to deliver the best product possible.

Fortunately, many small farms, ranches and dairies are stubbornly refusing to compromise and cut corners. By avoiding synthetic chemicals in fertilizers, pesticides, antibiotics and food additives, using farmland that has been free from prohibited chemical inputs and maintaining chemical-free livestock our farm friends are creating high quality foods.

Crackers_Blue Star Farms_4 copySimple axiom: high quality tastes good. Spread our creamy, buttery organic Hummingbird cheese on a Blue Star Farms Organic Cracker. Sip Strongtree Organic Coffee. AndHummingbird3 experiment using Rustichella d’Abruzzo Organic Corn Pasta next time you make a simple Mac ‘n’ Cheese.

And cheese — we really can’t say enough about hand-made cheese. We carry an average of 85 of them over the course of a year. The number changes with the season because the conditions change with weather. At The Lazy Lady Farm, where Laini Fondiller has been utilizing organic practices since 1987 and even grows her own hay, she selects and monitors not only the quality of the grass and water, but every aspect of production – even the herd itself. She’s on a first-name basis with her animals.

We carry several of her cheeses in season and right now we’re thinking about and enjoying Thin Red Line with it’s distinctive layer of smoked paprika.

This rigorous attention to detail means that by the time we’re approached to sample a potential addition to the inventory, it’s alreaCheese_Lazy Lady-Thin Red Line_1 copydy passed a gauntlet of taste tests by the maker, the maker’s family, his friends and probably a few local chefs, too. If they’re O.K. with it, we know we’re in for a great taste experience. After all, this is bespoke cheese.


cheese of course_FINAL






3 Easy Recipes=1 Menu

 Here’s  a whole menu—three recipes which fit together perfectly.

Late winter meals beg for a little bump-up… something new, something we haven’t been making all season.  Here are three recipes–Roasted Veggies East/West, Couscous with Shallot and Purely Simple Baked Chicken Thighs— which go together perfectly,  Make just one or two for a light meatless supper.  Make all three for a great mid-week feast.

Basic roasted veggies are a winter staple but I’ve perked them up here with an East/West sauce and then roasted them to carmelized perfection. Baby Brussell Sprouts emerge firm but tender, carrots sweet and rich and fennel adds it’s unique, complex flavor.  The dressing combines favorite Western and Eastern flavors with a surprise dash of Rosemary Honey.

You can serve the veggies as is or mixed with the fine Les Moulins Mahjoub Tunisian Couscous I used in the recipe below.  Add, or not, succulent baked chicken thighs.  Your choice.  No matter how you combine them or let the dishes go solo it’ll be a wonderful meal.

Every item in these recipes is available at my store, Olde Hudson… I take them home and cook with them myself with the goal of producing delicious, fresh meals.

Roasted Veggies East/West roasted veggies carmelized

  • 1 bag baby brussel sprouts
  • 2 bulbs fennel, fronds removed & julienned
  • 4 carrots julienned

Mix dressing ingredients together and toss with veggies. Roast at 500-degrees on top shelf of your oven for 25-35 minutes or until veggies are cooked and carmelized

Couscous With ShallotCouscous_Shallots

Saute the shallot in the Grapeseed Oil, for approximately 2 minutes or until fragrant and translucent. Add 1 cup of Couscous, season with pepper and toast on a medium high heat for 5 to 6 minutes — until the color just begins to change

Add 1 1/2 cups of Aneto Chicken Broth.  When the mixture comes to a boil, cover the pan, reduce heat to a simmer,  continue simmering  for 5 minutes,  Turn off the heat and let the couscous rest for 10 minutes.                                                                                                                       Toss with the Baby Brussels Sprouts, Fennel and and Carrot mixture if you like or just serve as a nutty, crunchy side dish.

Purely Simple Baked Chicken Thighs

To add chicken or not?  I brought home Misty Knoll Thighs from Olde Hudson  and I started them before the veggies by heating the  oven to 425-degrees.  Then I seasoned them with salt, pepper and a nice full-bodied extra virgin olive oil, here I used  Domenica Fiore, just enough to glisten the thighs and enhance the basting sauce and natural chicken gravy.  Roast for 25-30 minutes or until they are gorgeously brown.

The whole meal, from start to finish?  I’d say 40 minutes…



Polenta with Porcini

Polenta and Caravaggio Sauce

This recipe is perfect for a cold night, and a quick, elegant and satisfying dinner. Serve it with a simple green salad and a full-bodied red wine. All the ingredients are available at Olde Hudson.           This recipe serves four deliciously

  • For the Polenta-
  • 6 cups Aneto Chicken Stock
  • 2 Teaspoons Coarse Salt
  • 1 Package Casale Paradiso Polenta with Porcini

Bring 6 cups of chicken stock and 1 teaspoon of salt to a full boil.  Add the entire package of Paradiso Polenta with Porcini.  Following the directions of the packet – stir, lower heat and cook for 10 minutes.  Add more chicken stock if necessary.

  • For the Caravaggio Sauce-
  • 1 cup Ronnybrook heavy cream
  • 1 sprig rosemary plus 4 extra sprigs for garnish
  • 1/3 cup cubed Blu di Caravaggio
  • 2 cubed Tablespoons Vermont Butter and Cheese Unsalted Butter
  • Fresh ground pepper

Heat the heavy cream with 1 sprig rosemary until the cream is about to boil.  Turn off the heat and let the rosemary steep in the cream for 15 minutes.

Reheat the cream, remove the rosemary, add the Blu di Caravaggio, butter and freshly ground pepper. Stir well until combined.

Once again heat until just about boiling, then simmer 5 minutes.  Remove from heat and let rest for 10 minutes and then gently reheat.  The consistency will be runny and rich.



Harry and Bess sweethearts with logo

Great Couples

Eggs and bacon.  Coffee and cream.  Toast and jam. Harry and Bess.  Presidents deserve Valentines too!

Presidents’ Day and Valentine’s Day fall so closely together that we get the luxury of a long weekend and the chance to fill it with romance.

I say: Why wait for champagne and chocolates to mark romance?  joan-eggs-butter-milk-vert

To me, Valentine’s Day starts early with a meal that covers all the bases. Farm fresh free-range eggs with shells the color of a Texas sky. Check. Thick bacon that oozes applewood fragrance.  Check. The special thick richness of cream from cows grazing just down the street. Got it.  And preserves that are so full of fruit they baconpractically invented the word “jam-packed.”

Romance can’t be better than breakfast for two with perfect ingredients. O.K., maybe the anticipation of is pretty good, too…. Sitting at the kitchen counter while one person cooks, the other casually sips a hot coffee, rich with Ronnybrook fresh cream. Casual conversation while the bacon sizzles.

Then, giving in to the jams_les-collines_2irresistible urge to sample the first slice while more is cooking in the pan. The decadence of fresh eggs frying in leftover bacon drippings. (Hey! It’s only once a year.)  And, finally, hot toast slathered with gem-like jellies from Les Collines.

Best of all is the gift of time to share a perfect breakfast. The view from the kitchen window looks out on pine trees where chickadees flit among the branches and nut hatches gripping firmly to the trunk hang upside down as they search for insects. The occasional cardinal flies by and, of course, the dogs chase them all!  But it’s seldom we take the time to pour a second cup of coffee and just take in nature’s morning activities. A peaceful, leisurely start to the day makes me appreciate all I have.  I love it here.





snow and trees with logo top

The Weather Outside is Frightful…

But the polenta is so delightful!

We spent the afternoon walking the dogs through the snow. It was cold and crisp, but, thankfully, sunny. Ears flapping (not mine), paw prints on the woodland road (not mine) and the occasional dowsing with snow caused by the wind dislodging handfuls of the stuff from branches. (on me. Of course.) These days are perfect for loving Winter.

As we walked, I thought about possibilities for the dinner and settled on polenta with marinara sauce.

What do I have in the house? It’s getting too late for major prep. I love Ooma Tesoro, made in small batches in the nearby Berkshires and I always bring some home from my store to have on hand for quick and delicious meals. This sauce uses the red, ripe tomatoes from last season’s first harvest and its clean rich taste reflects its lack of ingredients – no sugar, no cholesterol and no preservatives. Plus it smells great simmering on the stove!


I opened a package of polenta mix with mushrooms and added it to a pan of rich chicken stock simmering on the stove. With a few stirs and just time enough to feed the dogs, it was done. Now the fragrance of the tomato sauce was mingling with the rich woodsy scent of mushrooms. We were getting hungry!

One of the benefits of serving polenta and sauce is the lovely color combination of red and yellow. To enhance those bright colors, I chose a muted red linen runner for the table and some rustic homespun napkins. I added lowball glasses, Dick opened some red wine and the table was set.


Just a ladle full of marinara in a bowl, covered with a ladle full of polenta, some black pepper and some shavings of aged Parmigiano-Reggiano. That salty, nutty flavor and granular consistency is unmistakable. Presto! Dinner is served.

This recipe quickly serves four


P.S. Best part? I have enough sauce left over for some orecchietti with tiny lamb meatballs for tomorrow!