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Everything posted by Priscilla

  1. Priscilla

    Dinner! 2002

    Niman Ranch super-thick rib-eye coated with sage, rosemary, olive oil, salt and pepper, as per Mario Batali, grilled on the old Weber, sliced on a bed of dressed arugula from the garden. Also spinach puff, a Mario recipe new to me, delicate, and a foccacia with pine nuts. Priscilla
  2. Jaymes and Stellabella, I am interested in these green sauces. The one I make was taught to me by a Mexican lady, Victoria, and is quite similar to the recipe you posted, Jaymes, but with more cilantro and less onion, and no boiling of anything, ingredients bunged into the blender with maybe a little water to facilitate matters and let 'er rip. Victoria insisted on not too much onion in any of her sauces, considering it a diluting agent in excess. A very refined cook she was, turning out very refined food. I have seen another Mexican lady from the same village as Victoria use chicken base in
  3. Wow me too can never get enough. What a gift you so generously give us, Suvir. Priscilla
  4. Do you see regional differences among newspaper Food sections around the nation? And (if you do note regional differences), how does your region affect your own section's Food coverage? Thank you for participating in the Q&A! I enjoyed reading your early answers--they are very thoughtful and generous. Priscilla
  5. Yes, JD, that is absolutely it, thank you for that. Did find my tearsheet (tucked in AOaaGoW), it was from the LA Times, reprinted from its original publication in the Independent. A lovely affectionate piece. I'm glad it was chosen to close the book. Priscilla
  6. Hmmm ponderously sad. I do have some sympathy, from reading about Jill Norman's work on the unfinished Harvest of the Cold Months; the sheer volume of material must have been colossal. One wonders if someone somewhere wouldn't have taken on the organizational and archival burden, though. I remember reading an appreciation of Elizabeth David written by Gerald Asher after her death, perhaps published in one of the food mags, probably have the tearsheet tucked in a book somewhere. A treat to read, with lovely details, as I recall, about her visits to California, cited in the Reflexions timeline
  7. Yes, yes, JD, but BESIDES all that, what did Elizabeth David ever do for you? Your story is inspiring and astounding, but in a way not surprising (of course meaning in no way to discount your ordeal). The literary presence of Elizabeth David is just that strong. I can well wrap my mind around her works having contributed to saving somebody's life, if that is not too OTT a characterization. I would tend to agree with this assessment. But I do not regret reading both. Have you read Is There a Nutmeg in the House? Priscilla
  8. Just the book title, acronymized.
  9. Compelled to reintroduce arugula, if only to echo Jim's comments. The most gratifying plant to grow, arugula is! In warm enough weather the seeds will sprout overnight, or nearly. And in an astonishingly short time there's instasalad waiting for you. The thrill of this never palls--as a gardener I am far more enthusiastic than talented. I'd never used arugula flowers before, as I have always harvested whole plants once they mature to my liking, reseeding to keep the supply coming, thus never letting any reach flowering stage. (Controlling bolting is a constant in my Southern California cli
  10. Pitter, I am so heartened to read all this. I thought English Bread and Yeast Cookery was absolutely mind-blowing, life-changing, all that you describe. I mean, the yeast discussion alone! (Not to discount the rest.) That'll chasten a person, the relatively massive amounts of commercial yeast called for in conventional recipes, and Elizabeth David's discussion of how and more importantly why we oughtn't thoughtlessly adhere. And her sources in every section, so well and sensibly integrated into the text, with full citations, and still, all the deep scholarship not diluting the pure joy
  11. Yeow. Guess I check this topic just to re-excruciate myself.
  12. Priscilla

    Dinner! 2002

    Over the holiday week-end, which night was it, grilled Copper River Salmon, a nice side o' sockeye. Got the guy to trim off the skinny tail end, leaving me with the nice rectangle I wanted. The skin on these wild fish gets surpassingly crispy and toothsome, seems to achieve heights unattainable by farmed salmon. Oh and the flesh was good, very good, too. Incredible color and healthy firm texture, stripe of rarity in the middle there. Nice fresh spinach braised with onion and cream. Cute little red potatoes, fresh and earthy. Bread. Priscilla
  13. Hmmm well not EVERYBODY agrees, seems like. I do, too. Not, as you say, all cookbooks lend themselves to this treatment. It would be interesting to note which cookbooks are useful anthropologically and which as fiction, and what crossover if any is apparent. Hmmm. Me too, I mean, me either, never lived in such conditions, unless you count when I was young and busted flat, which is not the same I know. HOWEVER that was when I happened to read Elizabeth David, it occurs to me. Begins to address why one reads at all, doesn't it. To get a window on some life not our own? To investigate why
  14. Unread books piling up. There's a cheery thought. A thought that is constantly with me. Even with Elizabeth David, I didn't even KNOW about Is there a Nutmeg in the House? until the other day. I thought, had thought, thought for years, in fact, that I was DONE with Elizabeth David, except referencing recipes or idle revisitation. And then, (tentatively, foolishly) looking for something else, somehow there's an Elizabeth David collection I do not have, have not read, on the screen. What am I supposed to do, NOT read it? The gods conspire, I swear. Priscilla
  15. No. Definitely not. Well, if you mean "survey" in the sense of write an authoritative report on the state of Elizabeth David biographies, then may be. But I don't think you have to read all or even most biographies of an individual in order to recommend one biography. Usually plenty of clues within the four corners of the text as to quality. Sorry if I have taken your question too seriously. Oh my no, Wilfrid, no comment on your recommendation was meant in my question. It's just where books are concerned I tend to be of the More is More mind, you know what I mean? I am in complete agr
  16. You are John Osborne and I claim my five pounds! (Removed Ozzy-related pollution, if yer interested.)
  17. Isn't it essential to read both--er, ALL--available biographies, if one means to survey properly? Cooper's is the authorized, so-called, but Chaney had the cooperation of Elizabeth David's surviving sister Priscilla (Sir Terence's also got one, a Priscilla for a sister; also William F. Buckley) so how UNauthorized is THAT, not too, I would think. Both are big, rangy, dirt-dishing, and the picture of her life that emerges is romantic and quite nearly tragic, really. Interesting to me how the dramatic personal details are not fully exploited in her own work, but there is a dark subtextural for
  18. Glad to read the Julian Barnes article, John. Thank you for providing the link. I got a laugh from his heart-stopping moment of uncertainty at Elizabeth David's instruction to melt tomatoes in the recipe he was using. The idea of melting as something that happens to vegetables, rather than only to the usual meltable suspects, is something strongly associated with her writing, for me, even though of course others use it the same way. Priscilla
  19. Recently began Is There a Nutmeg in the House? a posthumously-published (2001) Elizabeth David collection. It’s been a keen pleasure reading her again. I consult her for recipes frequently, but have not revisited her longer prose in some time. I ripped through her books when I was younger, including English Bread and Yeast Cookery, and Salt, Spices, and Aromatics in the English Kitchen, as well as the famous, invaluable Continental titles. Also an earlier collection of short pieces, An Omelet and a Glass of Wine, and later, initially dutifully, the fascinating and high-quality Harvest of th
  20. So Oraklet cuts 00-type flour with pastry flour, even further reducing protein content. Hmmm. I have used fine semolina as specified by Marcella Hazan for that square-spaghetti-type fresh pasta, hmmm, tonnarelli is it called? Other than that, pasta-wise it's a-p all the way. Robert, thank you for the double-tile idea. I'll be enacting it asap. Priscilla
  21. Robert, I too most emphatically am NOT a technical baker, although I have, as an amateur baker seeking information, certainly benefited from their research. I didn’t even want to BE a baker at all! But once one begins it is apparently impossible to stop, and there is pleasure to be derived under the burden, I guess. I have read about Italian 00 flour, never used it. The King Arthur Flour people used to carry something in their catalogue that was supposed to be comparable. Any interest I have had in trying such a flour was for making fresh pasta, for which I have always used all-purpose. I
  22. Robert, what kind of flour do you use for pizza dough? Do you think there is advantage in using a high-gluten flour and letting it rest and relax over using a lower-gluten flour in the first place? Priscilla
  23. The bowls you describe, John, sound like the classic Revere Ware stainless with the hanging ring, or similar. Have a few myself I've picked up along the way--I like the shape of them for many jobs. The Rosti bowls referred to are Melamine or another hard plastic, groovy colorways, instantly recognizable as Scandinavian. Integral handles, no rings. Pursued by collectors, nowdays. At least one update came with a circular rubberized ring that sat on the counter, holding the bowl at an angle of the cook's choosing. Priscilla
  24. Interesting article, Miss J. Turgid prose has got its place. The Rosti mixing bowl the writer cites is a design classic, but the tilty-ring to which he refers, and notes with some anger consumer rejection of, really was an unnecessary conceit. One of the beautiful things about a mixing bowl, conceptually, is that it is all of a piece, complete unto itself, nothing extraneous, separate, loseable. Not that there can’t or won’t be design improvements on the mixing bowl. As in cuisine, though, and I am sort of a Pollyanna on this account, innovation must justify its own existence. It must ma
  25. Priscilla

    Dinner! 2002

    I like sauerkraut, too. However, last evening roasted a lamb loin, nice textural contrast between the loin and the tenderloin sides. Deglazement enriched with compound butter. Green-corn (differentiated from dry corn; mine was fresh white corn) pudding as Fritz makes it for Nero Wolfe, with the addition of diced roasted red bell pepper which if I have I put in this dish, glazed roasted beets. Bread. Priscilla
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