BSK Rescues Cod From The French

December 6th, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink

HG is a confirmed Anglophile in terms of prose, poetry and the dramatic arts (has special love for dressy, upper crust TV stuff like“Downton Abbey”). HG is Francophile in culinary tastes (enchanted by tripe, kidneys, liver, snails, frog legs, tete de veau). A few days ago, BSK brought home a nice piece of cod fished off Iceland’s chilly waters. HG spied a French recipe that called for the cod to be placed on quartered potatoes and sliced onions in a roasting pan. Salted, peppered and moistened with some melted butter and olive oil. Cooked for 25 minutes in a 375 degree oven (pan sealed with Reynolds Wrap). Explanation: Moisture from potatoes and onions would steam the cod. Seemed logical to HG. BSK sneered. Recipe would result in underdone potatoes, tasteless onions and mushy cod. “We’ll do it my way.” In a big pan on top of the stove BSK cooked onions and plenty of garlic until lightly caramelized, deglazed the pan with white wine and added thinly sliced potatoes. Gave it a modest hit of smoked Spanish paprika. When potatoes had softened slightly, BSK topped the pan with the cod (perfectly seasoned with salt and pepper), chopped parsley and poured clam broth over everything. Turned up the heat. Covered the pan. In a few minutes the cod was done and gilded with a little melted butter. The result: Fish with pearly white, juicy flesh and a silky mouth feel. Garlicky onions and potatoes with a taste of the sea from the cod and the clam broth. Great eating. HG expressed gratitude. (However, will try that French recipe some day when dining alone. Belief in French kitchen infallibility dies hard.)


What we Have Lost…

October 29th, 2013 § 4 comments § permalink

What have we lost? Style. A sense of occasion. HG refers to the fact that few persons dress formally for a restaurant dinner these days. HG is not talking about black tie. We don’t live in Downton Abbey. But, appropriate dining-out clothes for HG does mean a jacket for men. Women, given their natural virtues and virtuoso abilities in scarf administration, can get away with much more informality. When HG was younger, everyone dressed up to go to a restaurant or the theater. Women even had “cocktail dresses” and “restaurant suits” (They also had girdles but that’s another story). Looking stylish added a festive quality to many activities. With baby boomers in the 60s rejecting the formalities of their elders, the road was paved for today’s young hipster style of plaid shirts, jeans and beards. Overall the wholesale embracing of casual style seems to HG, depressing and conformist. HG agrees with Woody Allen’s statement: “Eating at home is just eating. Eating in a restaurant is a party”. So. Listen to HG: Make the world a better place and dress to dine out.


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