Time to cook for the family, which means sledging the bog, digging the swamp, pouring the fat. Off to Eastern Market to gather onions, carrots, parsnips, garlic, mushrooms, potatoes, herbs, and oxtails and short ribs. Yes, oxtails and short ribs.
Produce from local Michigan farmers gleams aisle after aisle. All that grows in the dark earth then harvested in the sun.
Mushrooms, must have mushrooms and a mix of Cremini, Oyster, Portobello and Shiitake sounds just right.
Into the kitchen where I saw in half short ribs, of course making them shorter.
I sear the bones on every side, then plate to the side, cut and cut a pot full of onions to slowly simmer into a pulpy, oniony mass. As I cut root bulbs in half, then thinly slice I continue the vibe from last night when my son and I tripped the night fantastic with White Castle and Adult Swim. Time for some Danger Doom off The Mouse And The Mask courtesy of MF Doom and Danger Mouse.
Oh yes, yes, yes. Browned bones watching as the onions sizzle.
Cutting continues as carrots and parsnips fall in roughly cut orange and white sticks. Why, yes, a bottle of wine lurks in the corner.
A Côtes du Rhône from Domaine de l’Espigouette with deep, rich, jammy, berry notes matched with a taste of minerals and smoke. A pour of this in my glass, and then given I bought two bottles, the rest will create dark, red waters for my bog.
Maybe another track from Danger Mouse, something to bring back the lilting voice of Harvey Birdman, Attorney At Law.
A bubbling begins in the pot. Onions, carrots and parsnips join with herbs and wine to transform all into layers of taste fit for a swamp in Saint Clair Shores.
And then. And then? The bone, fat and flesh descend and all, all is changed utterly into a oily mass of animal and vegetable sinking into juices; earth becoming liquid, liquid becoming earth, and all across hours fusing together.
Gorgeous, isn’t it. Time deepens into itself; not really moving, not really passing. Time exists in our consciousness as a digging down into where we are–time then, a hollowing out of space and then a filling in with flesh and muscle breaking down into chunks and threads, glistening globs of fat and onions, carrots, parsnips and garlic, oh yes, I added garlic, percolating to a roughly-ground coffee. Time as the felt presence of all that crumbles and falls, decays and withers back into the earth whence it came. Time to add the mushrooms.
Then, I remember. The “Crave Case.” Yes. Nick didn’t want me to leave it at his house; he feared what might happen, he dreaded it speaking to him in the middle of the night, calling him to its blue and gold colors out of space. so I brought it back to Lou and Deb’s place, where I’m staying, and now . . . now I know what must be done with the remaining sliders.
That’s right, warmed and then served on a plate with oxtail, mushroom and all the oniony, carroty, parsnipy jus in the pot. Oh my.
And how does one eat all of this? Why with fork and slider, sopping up all the boggy goodness. Bon Appétit!