The Anatomical Theater: Skin And Flesh

Look at it.  So beautiful.  Firm, bright color, everything you would want. Consider Harold McGee’s view of skin in On Food and Cooking. Usually cooks don’t welcome large amounts of toughening connective tissue in meat.  But taken on their own, animal skin, cartilage, and bones are valuable exactly because they’re mostly connective tissue and therefor … Continue reading The Anatomical Theater: Skin And Flesh

Cochon De Lait, Day Three With The Family, Andrei Rublev, László Krasznahorkai, August Escoffier, Julia Child, Montezuma, Demeter, Ian McKellen, Robert Fagles, Uncle Tupelo, James Joyce, Bob Dylan and The Band, Flannery O’Connor, And Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds.

Yes, Cochon de Lait stuffed and roasted for six hours on Christmas Day; all deep brown and crisp with a fat-rich world inside waiting to pour out onto our plates.  Let’s back up a moment, how did this come about? I prepped my mind for two days so I would approach the pig with the … Continue reading Cochon De Lait, Day Three With The Family, Andrei Rublev, László Krasznahorkai, August Escoffier, Julia Child, Montezuma, Demeter, Ian McKellen, Robert Fagles, Uncle Tupelo, James Joyce, Bob Dylan and The Band, Flannery O’Connor, And Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds.

Cochon De Lait For The Three Graces, Day Two With Some Bollywood For Good Measure

A simple table setting from Hannibal.  Well, a simple precision given the layers of life and death unfolding between Hannibal Lecter and Will Graham.  Consider this a dark bridge to the scene from Pan’s Labyrinth which ended the previous post.  Fork and napkin on the left, knife on the right, wine glass also on the … Continue reading Cochon De Lait For The Three Graces, Day Two With Some Bollywood For Good Measure

Jane Grigson, Pig Tails, Henri Michaux And Debussy–All From a Far-Off Country.

Let’s read the opening sentences of Jane Grigson’s Charcuterie and French Pork Cookery, an awe-inspiring journey through cooking and prose. It could be said that European civilization –and Chinese civilization too–has been founded on the pig.  Easily domesticated, omnivorous household and village scavenger, clearer of scrub and undergrowth, devourer of forest acorns, yet content with … Continue reading Jane Grigson, Pig Tails, Henri Michaux And Debussy–All From a Far-Off Country.

The Philosophy of Polenta as I Whisk with Napoléon, Rousseau, Sebald and Aurelius.

I’m pausing in my reconstruction of Thanksgiving in order to get all philosophical about cooking with corn meal.  Here is part of what the Larousse Gastronomique has to say about polenta: Piedmont form of maize (corn) meal porridge.  It is made simply of maize flour dried in the open and not in the oven.  Polenta … Continue reading The Philosophy of Polenta as I Whisk with Napoléon, Rousseau, Sebald and Aurelius.

Aaron Needs A Goat–I Have A Stew To Cook, Sins To Confess, And Côtes du Rhône To Drink. Let’s Here It For Family Bovidae!!

What’s in a cooking pot?  Here’s Rachel Laudan in Cuisines and Empires on the subject: The cooking pot, in which diverse elements were brought into harmony, symbolized culture and state.  When the Greeks founded a new colony, they carried a cauldron and a spark of fire from the mother city.  Confucians argued that the king … Continue reading Aaron Needs A Goat–I Have A Stew To Cook, Sins To Confess, And Côtes du Rhône To Drink. Let’s Here It For Family Bovidae!!