Thursday, February 05, 2015

Fine food

I started to title this "Eating High on the Hog" but that doesn't do justice to the two meals I had in the last two days. I was eating sophisticated food, and I loved it. I have a reputation among some friends for eating things most people wouldn't touch. For instance, I love the tongue sandwiches at the local deli, along with the chopped chicken liver and, occasionally, pickled herring. I grew up eating fried kidneys, though I haven't had them in years--you can't buy two any more, have to buy a whole case (I only wanted to see if I still liked them!).
My restaurant-exploring friend Betty and I had dinner at Sera last night and shared a chaucuterie platter of whiskey smoked salmon, duck prosciutto, and duck liver mousse with an arugula, marinated onion, and pepper salad and marinated okra (one thing I don't eat--Betty got all the okra). I could have eaten fourteen helpings of the mousse (and felt awful afterword)--it truly was wonderful. We each order a black Caesar salad--an unusual mixture of kale, butternut squash, white anchovies, black garlic (I have no idea what that is), and a light vinaigrette. A lovely meal.
Today at lunch, my former colleague Melinda and I went to Nonna Tata (sorry for those of you out of Fort Worth if these references don't mean much), and I had the bresaola platter--bresaola is the beef version of prosciutto, served on greens, garnished with thin slices of Grana cheese, and dressed with lemon and olive oil. It's served with a vinegar-dressed potato salad. Absolutely delicious. Our server bribed us to change tables by promising dessert--I brought home the darkest chocolate mousse I've ever seen. Jacob took one look and announced, "I don't like it." So I ate half--too rich to eat the whole thing at once.
One night before these delicious meals, I had a chicken-friend pork cutlet with cream gravy, black-eyed peas, and salad. Delicious too, but heavy, and I felt sluggish the next morning and decided to eat light for the next few days. The meals above were light because they were presented in European quantities--not the huge servings we Americans have come to expect. Also there was nothing fried.
I'm not sure if it's the lighter dining or the experience of two really fine meals, but my disposition is brighter than it has been in several days. There's a lesson to be learned there. Back to my standard tuna fish salad.


Polly Iyer said...

Sounds like adventurous eating to me. Wish I could have gone with you.

Judy Alter said...

Wish you could have too, Polly.

Gloria Alden said...

You're eating a lot of things, I've never tried. Once a long time ago, my mother-in-law served me a tongue sandwich. She didn't tell me what it was until I was chewing on it. I swear I felt the thing throbbing in my mouth. :-) However, a long time ago I loved the pickled pigs feet in a jar. And then there was something we ate called ring pudding, which was mushed up leftover pig pieces and spices, I think, stuffed into a casing. Loved it with lots of ketchup on it and served with eggs sunny side up. It's hard to find now, and oh the fat calories in it.

Gloria Alden said...

I've never ate many of the things you've mentioned, Judy. I never liked liver of any kind. Once when I was a newly married, my mother-in-law served me a tongue sandwich. She didn't tell me what it was until I was chewing on it. I swear I could feel it throbbing in my mouth.

Growing up I loved pickled pigs feet from a jar, and ring pudding which was mashed up pig parts with spices stuffed into a casing. It was delicious served with ketchup and sunny side up runny eggs. But, oh the fat calories. It's hard to find now.

Judy Alter said...

Gloria, I love tongue but have never done pigs feet--not sure I could. Just shows we all have our peculiar tastes. Ring pudding sounds interesting, though I decry the tendency these days to cover everything in ketchup.