Holiday Feasting (Day Eight)

December 31st, 2014 § 1 comment

Warm, sunny, cloudless day. HG/BSK, SJ, EM, Haru and Teru; Gifted Daughter Lesley R., were off to that ornament of Providence, RI, Roger Williams Park Zoo. HG hasn’t visited a zoo in some years and was astonished at the beauty of Zebras, Giraffes, Flamingos, Cranes and Boa Constrictors. Much to the delight of the little ones (and the bemusement of adult viewers), the Elephant performed some necessary functions in what could only be described as elephantine proportions. The group found the lethal grace of the Snow Leopard mesmerizing and the Red Panda hit new heights of cuteness. The zoo, for a few hours,turned our group into children. Happy, wondering children. In the evening, Lesley R. outdid herself in the kitchen and produced a dinner that can only be described as deeply satisfying. Tender brisket in an assertive, rich tomato licked sauce. Ultra-tender Fennel braised in butter and stock. Haricot verts stir fried with shallots and herbs. Moroccan carrot salad, redolent with cumin and cinnamon. And, as a crowning glory, SJ made his state of the art mashed potatoes, a lighter than air balance of potatoes, salt butter and cream. Profesore Massimo R. poured three splendid Italian reds: A Barolo, a Montepulciano and a Chianti. A pause. And, then came desserts: A tart/sweet cranberry tart in a walnut crust (baked by Lesley R.) flan (left over from the previous evening); strudel (baked by friend/neighbor Diane). A big bowl of whipped cream. Vintage port. Grappa. Limoncello.This is the kind of meal HG loves: Abundant, Powerful tastes. Perfect balance of the rich and austere, the bitter and the sweet. The kind of meal Lesley R. produces with no histrionics and little fuss. HG is a proud Pop.

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