Foodie Friday: Something Different
Before I began my blog, I always loved to cook and collect cookbooks. Amazon really knows what kind of cookbooks I’d be interested in too; so the collection is quite large and ever growing. Before I began this blog I also enjoyed just reading about food and how chefs interpret food for their customers. Some can be quite passionate about texture, flavor, color, ripeness, etc. One of the books I stumbled upon during this food-reading-frenzy was Tamar Adler’s “An Everlasting Meal.” OMG…this book is the bomb diggity of food reads! I read a page out of this book every night before I go to bed just to calm myself down and remind myself that there are still good things left in this world. Her prose is astonishing. The way she weaves words and sentences together to describe what she likes to cook is mouth-watering. It is nothing less than inspirational.
It’s not like a normal cookbook that only contains recipes matched with large high-def photos, which are highly styled. (It has no photos for the record) It contains long written passages about food and different ways of preparing one type of food depending on what you are feeling or just what happens to be lying around in the fridge/counter/pantry. She teaches you how not to waste anything either. Don’t throw out your water that you boiled your cauliflower in! It can be used as the basis of a flavorful soup that may or may not contain cauliflower. Save excess oil that you sauté vegetables in as well. That oil is now double flavored. She says her fridge is loaded with little viles and jars full of mysterious contents due to her “saving” technique. Making your food taste scrumptious is her goal. No dry boring sandwich for her. Load it up with melting mozzarella cheese and “garlicky greens.” Never heard of that before? There are so many more creative ideas that frankly sound down-right delicious.
Why am I featuring this on a weight loss blog? Because it is all healthy food that she is recommending. Healthy food made to be out-of-this-world fabulous! Losing weight or not, eating healthy, tasty food is a good idea.
Some quotes I like:
“Let the stock sit in the refrigerator overnight to give its fat time to rise to the top. The following day, scoop the fat off with a spoon. Save it in a jar. Use it as you would butter or olive oil. Once you have stock, you will have already half cooked a number of meals.”
“I taught a class in butchery one spring, instructing students in how to take apart chickens and remove bones from legs of lamb. At the end of each class, because nearly everyone rejected my suggestion that bones go home with her, I took them home myself.” Personal note: I have done this at friend’s homes where I take the bones home while being stared at like I’m a maniac.
A typical “recipe”: “Warm some garlicky sautéed cooking greens in a pan. Find left-over roasted squash and season it with a little red wine vinegar, dig out some olives and a wedge of Parmesan cheese. Put grits or polenta in a bowl, assemble your leftovers on top, drizzle with balsamic vinegar or olive oil, or broth, and grate it all heavily with Parmesan cheese.”
“Most of us regard beans with suspicion, as we do stale bread and cooking in water. Prejudices are always best dispatched, but not always unfounded. When food is boiled badly, it’s fair to turn away from it, and if stale bread isn’t cooked with, or toasted, but served dry and harsh, it’s awful.”
What to do if you overcook something: “Mash overboiled vegetables with a little butter and herbs and warm them slowly in a little pot, and call it mashed turnips, or mashed potatoes, or whatever it is you’ve mashed. Or after mixing in butter and herbs spread it all into a buttered casserole, bake it until it starts to bubble, sprinkle the top with toasted breadcrumbs, return it to the oven until they brown, and serve it as a gratin.”