Local Scene & News - Coveside Blog

The Season at Coveside Bed & Breakfast

Summer

Garden & coive view at Coveside bed and breakfast

Summer has arrived on the coast — the Five Islands Lobster Company wharf is open for business; our gardens are showing their stuff; the farm markets are increasingly full of great things to cook for breakfast. This is our 17th year here on Gotts Cove and we expect it to be a banner season. Bookings have been strong so if you’re planning at stay at Coveside Bed & Breakfast this summer or fall, we suggest you reserve your room as soon as your plans are clear. You can check availability and book directly on our website.

Cornmeal Griddle Cakes

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Cornmeal griddle cakes are probably our guests’ favorite pancake, and ours as well. They are light, tangy with yogurt, and with a nice crunch that the cornmeal provides.

For 4 servings:
1 cup flour
1/2 cup cornmeal (preferably stone ground)
3 TBS sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt

1 1/4 cup low fat yogurt
2 eggs
2 oz. unsalted butter, melted

Mix together dry ingredients.  Whisk together yogurt and eggs and add melted butter, then. stir into the flour mixture.

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Cook on medium-hot griddle. Start with a scant 1/4 cup of batter per pancake and experiment with size since they grow a bit as they cook.  Flip when top is bubbly and the bottom is nicely browned. Remove from griddle when 2nd side is browned. Serve with maple or blueberry syrup.

Coveside Bed & Breakfast Featured in Boston Globe

 

boston globe Featured in a recent article in the travel section of the Boston Globe, Georgetown is described in the headline as “A shy jewel of an isle off Bath.” The article lauds Georgetown’s attractions:  Reid State Park, the Five Islands Lobster Company wharf, the Newman Preserve. It also has nice things to say about Coveside Bed & Breakfast:

The sweeping lawn at the secluded and surprisingly elegant Coveside Bed and Breakfast (6 Cotts Cove Lane, 800-232-5490, www.covesidebandb
.com, $145-$225) leads to the shoreline of pretty Cotts Bay and a private dock, with views into Sheepscot Bay. Seven rooms, housed in the main house and separate modern cottage, are bright and airy, with water views, private baths, and plush linens; some have private porches and gas fireplaces. Guests have access to bikes and kayaks (this is a great place to pedal or paddle), and rates include a full breakfast prepared by co-owner Carolyn Church, a former pastry chef.

Despite the misspelling of Gotts Cove, we’re delighted to receive kudos from the Globe.

Our Tree Peonies Show Off

 

Finally, after perhaps a decade of nursing along our tree peonies, this year they decided to put on quite a show. Our gardens are just waking up from a particularly nasty winter, but snow cover protected most of the perennials from the “Polar Vortex” that blasted through here in January. Shrubs and some of our more delicate trees didn’t do so well.  Here are some shots of the peonies in their glory.

Back in Maine, where it’s still winter!

snow bank in front of cove

Expecting spring, we were greeted by winter!

We arrived back in Maine a week ago, after experiencing beautiful weather in France for three weeks. We knew it had been a hard winter, and that we wouldn’t be seeing the flowers that were all over the place in Paris.  But we thought maybe we’d see a few daffodils poking through the ground.  No way!  We couldn’t even see the ground. It’s great to be back in Maine, but we hear that we picked a good winter to be away. Hopefully, this bodes well for a delightful summer.

We had a fabulous time in France, and while far from being fluent in French, we’ve made a lot of progress.  If you’re interested, there are photos and reports on our French adventures on our travel blog:  covesiders.blogspot.com.

 

Postcards from La Cote d’Azur

Cap Ferat from the Col d'Eze; our first hick (the train down was a real challenge!)

Cap Ferat from the Col d’Eze; our first hike (the trail down was a real challenge!)

We just finished six weeks in the South of France, on the Cote d’Azur, in a little village just next to Nice called Villefranche-Sur-Mer.  As we have done for the past three years, we’ve been trying to improve our French language skills (while, incidentally, escaping the Maine winter. This year proved to be a great year to be away from Maine!)  Here are a few pictures of our activities — when we weren’t studying our French. (Click on the small image to see a larger version)

Winter in the South of France

sea view from high on a hill, with Mediterranean in the background

So it hasn’t been as pleasant as we expected here on the Cote d’Azur — lots of rain and chilly temperatures. It’s still a lot warmer than Maine; especially this year!  We’re spending almost two months in France this winter, most of it in a little fishing village next to Nice, on the Mediterranean — Villefranche-sur-Mer. We’re continuing our efforts to learn to speak French reasonably well with courses at the Institut de Francais. And, of course, we plan to absorb French culture, food, wine, etc. The weather reports predict an improvement, and we’re looking forward to putting our umbrellas away for a while.The picture above is the view from our school, looking toward Cap Ferat. A lovely spot. If you wish, you can follow our travels on our travel blog here.

Fried green tomatoes for breakfast!

 

green tomatoes in frying pan, with brown crusty coating

Fried green tomatoes, browned and ready to serve

Late summer and fall are the time to find ripe red tomatoes in the farmers market. It’s a bit harder to find green tomatoes (unless you have them growing in your own garden!). We ordered a bag from our favorite farm stand and decided to try a popular southern dish, fried green tomatoes, as an unusual addition to a breakfast menu. The results were so popular we’re adding them to our regular breakfast repertoire. We served them with herbed scrambled eggs, cheddar-chive scones, and Niman Ranch sausage links. Delicious!

Making fried green tomatoes couldn’t be easier. Core and slice firm green tomatoes into 1/4-inch slices and place them on a baking sheet. The secret is then to sprinkle both sides generously with salt and sugar (like you were seasoning a steak) and let them sit 30 minutes or so to draw out the water and insure a crispy coating. Heat a non-stick frying pan over medium high heat and add two tablespoons olive oil and two tablespoons unsalted butter. Gently press each slice between layers of paper towels to dry and then dip each first into lightly beaten egg, and then press into a mixture of half panko bread crumbs and half grated Parmesan cheese, until both sides are thoroughly covered and the crumb-cheese mixture adheres well. Make sure the oil is hot but not smoking. Fry until bottoms are golden brown; turn and fry other sides till golden, adding more butter and oil if necessary. Top with eggs — scrambled, poached, or fried. Or try a fried green tomato benedict, using the tomato instead of an English muffin, topped with ham or bacon, a poached egg, and hollandaise sauce. We found the basic recipe for the tomatoes on one of our favorite food blogs, Amanda Hesser’s Food 52. The recipe for the delicious cheddar-chive scones is in the new cookbook from Portland’s Standard Baking Company.

Harvest Dinner at Coveside Bed and Breakfast

candlelit table with plates set with salad

Tables ready for guests at Coveside’s first harvest dinner

Local Georgetown restaurants are frequently closed one or more nights during the week in the autumn, a particular problem for guests arriving in the evening after a long drive. We decided to offer the option of dinner at Coveside on several fall evenings when a number of guests were scheduled to arrive. We invited our Georgetown neighbor, Robert Masciola, to be guest chef. Rob’s family comes from the Abruzzi region of Italy and he is an accomplished cook. He (aided by his wife, Amy) prepared a memorable meal that featured vegetables from our local farm market, home-made pasta, local Five Islands Lobster, and a delectable apple caramel tart prepared by Carolyn (served with Tom’s home-made salty caramel ice cream). The menu and pictures (by Amy Masciola) are below.

 

 

 

Harvest Time at the Bath Farmers Market

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Harvest time at the Bath farmers market, located along the waterfront park on the Kennebec River, is one of the joys of living in mid-coast Maine. We’ve been buying all the produce for Coveside Bed & Breakfast at the market since we opened, 16 years ago. In that time the market has grown in size from ten or twelve vendors to several dozen, and the variety has increased dramatically. In addition to nearly a dozen purveyors of fruits and vegetables, nearly all of whom are certified organic, there are several artisan bakers and cheese producers, a fabulous mushroom vendor who sells both farm-raised mushrooms, and wild mushrooms gathered in the mid-coast area.  And there is farm-raised beef, lamb, pork, and poultry, farm-fresh eggs, even local wool from both sheep and alpacas. The pictures tell the story of the harvest bounty: