18 March 2012

chicken little

There are some new chicks in the village.  Eight to be precise. These gals have my husband swooning and wrapped around their wings.  
Bonjour mes petite cheries. Ça va mes jolies? 

This French rooster crows about his flock from sunrise to sunset.  Their residence, Four Seasons Hotel Hampshire

The Hotel’s carpenter built their palatial coop that sleeps ten. The Maran and Leghorn hens enjoy sweeping views of Dogmersfiled Estate and once a day, they exit their playpen to roam around the grounds and enjoy the good life of free range living.

The same day they moved into Dogmersfield Estate, Cyrille was eager to see if the hens had laid their first eggs- an assuring sign that his girls were enjoying their new abode.  And there, to his delight, were four gorgeous picture perfect eggs... and one runt.  The image of an acorn conjures up in my mind. Not wanting to upset the hen house on the first night, he put the little disgrace in the basket and shrugged it off as first night jitters. 

Chicken Little’s dainty deliveries have continued and add daily comic relief at the Hotel. It takes a lot of acorns to make an omlet- and with no yolks—chances of winning Miss Sunnyside Up 2012 are looking pretty slim.
Chicken Little vs Egg Benedict

One hen is laying wind eggs (small eggs with no yolk). Chances are one is either a pullet (a young hen) trying to figure out how to lay an egg, an old hen whose eggs all dried up, or just a neurotic scrambled chick needing a chill pill (me as a hen). 

The hens refuse to point feathers at the yolkless small fry. Cyrille is not at all amused or sympathetic to the underachiever. I think I ought to arrange a hen party in the coop. After a few worms I might suggest that whoever is laying the blanks had best sort out her issue before Chef gets a craving for coq au vin.

In my last blog I shared the beautiful spelt risotto dish which Cyrille served last week at the regional General Manager’s conference. The focus of the conference was on innovation. The meeting's objective was to be reflected throughout the event. Cyrille's goal was to veer far from traditional group lunches and coffee breaks while delivering the same high standard of food, presentation and service. 

For one lunch he organised a street food party in The Spa's circular drive.  Both the sunshine and the Queen heard about the event and made a cameo appearance. Okay, so Her Majesty was a bit tied up with planning her Diamond Jubilee celebration- but her substitute was pretty good, and a bit salty if I may add.

Her (almost) Majesty Queen E II
While participating in a barbecue competition last summer, Cyrille met some guys with Weber Grill who were key sponsors at the event. Their sleek Weber Airstream, outfitted for cooking demos and VIP seating, left a memorable impression on Cyrille. He knew they had to be at the street food party. Turns out, there are a lot of amazing street vendors in England. From gourmet flat breads, meatballs, burritos and fresh coffee- you needed the whole afternoon to sample all the treats.

Images from some of the participating street food vendors:
                                                the new quintessential picnic lunch
Cyrille visits with vendors before guests' arrivals

Weber Experience Airstream

Well Kneaded Street Food Vendor

Luardos Street Food Vendor

Things are a buzz around here.  Literally- a buzz. A colony of honey bees are in final negotiations for some prime real estate on Dogmersfield Estate. I am not sure if Cyrille is more excited about the Hotel having its own honey or being measured for his personal beekeeper suit. 

More on this sweet stuff to come. 

It has always been suspected. Now I know it is official. I married Chef Dolittle. 

In closing, I hope Chicken Little can muster up the courage to knock out some big ones in time for the Easter egg hunt. Perhaps I will suggest Cyrille take up singing to his girls... 


Mother Hen

1 comment:

  1. Never knew about "wind" eggs. . .poor little underachieving hen! Great article, another fun read. Can't wait to hear about the bees and their honey making experience.


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