Pollan is one who "gets it" when it come to dining and cooking.
It isn't a spectator sport. It shouldn't be a vicarious pleasure mediated
by the dreaded babble box. That is just pornography and the way it is
usually done gives the viewer as much chance of real enjoyment as watching
porn gives you the chance to actually get a leg over Angelina (or Brad as
the case may be). Cooking under time pressure is only justified by
commercial necessity, to prepare "gourmet" food at home at high speed
entirely misses the point. To watch food porn done under time pressure
combines both stupidities and I really don't understand why people do it.
Dining and cooking is a participant activity and like real sex it should be
done at leisure and with those you love. To get directly on topic: if you
can also cook with ingredients that you have just cut from the garden you
are really living.
On Sat, 1 Aug 2009 12:44:49 +1000, "David Hare-Scott"
Very very good post, David. Thank you and I agree with all points.
We do this very thing often here, with our children and grands, (and
extended family when we can get them together) with the ancillary goal
of instilling in the grands an appreciation for real food and real
cooking, teaching them how, and keeping our sons on the course they
Yesterday we did Frogmore Stew, more commonly called Low Country Boil
It was a full family process. Early in the week younger son and I
trapped half a hundred large crawdads, yabbies to you, and purged them
for two days in a ninety gallon tank of rainwater, which had a
recirculating pump and an dual air pump with two bubblers. Grands
enjoyed watching and *not* touching the mudbugs! (The purging water,
with its nutrients, is then pumped to the garden)
Locally raised sweet corn (hours off the stalk) wild caught shrimp,
organic red potatoes, the crayfish, Andouille and smoked sausage all
boiled up outside and served with fresh from the garden cukes with
rice wine and salt dressing and fresh from the garden green beans
dressed with from the garden garlic sauteed in butter and fresh from
the garden ripe tomatoes (finally).....
Everyone participated in the prep and cooking and the meal took well
over an hour to enjoy!
The youngest, twenty-one month old granddaughter Quinn enjoyed the
yabbies more than anyone. She devoured the tails, sucked the heads
with her uncle and I (the rest are a bunch of p***ies) and then
proceeded to dissect the thorax and head as a matter of interest!
LOL!! Totally apt description!!!
There are few that I would rather have at trough, uh, er, *table*,
than you, Fran. I daresay that you would fit well with us and the
raucous camaraderie we often enjoy at table.
Meals like this, eaten with fingers, are becoming more common with us,
as we prepare and experience more food from other cultures. I believe
it heightens the food experience and is much more inclusive and
comfortable for the toddlers, as we enjoy food with them in the way
that is still most natural for them.
The next time we enjoy yabbies, we shall set a place in your honor and
I shall toast you with the head.
After this exchange, I'm so hungry I could eat the arse out of a
I used to do raucous cameraderie very well - probably I did it best in the
late '70s/'80s when 'dinner parties' were all the rage.
You'd remember the sort of thing - 3 days spent in preparation when one did
such silly things as hand making chocolates to round off the meal.
These days I seen to have enough trouble feeding ourselves let alone a host
of people, but I do enjoy cooking with my 3 year old grandson.
Describes it to a 'T'! So far the 3 yr old and I have only done pretty
simple things such as pikelets and baba ganoush (since he loves to operate
the Tupperware mixer that beats and chops), but he's a whiz with a knife and
I know he won't cut himself even if his chopping isn't very even yet. He'll
get there though with more practice. Great little bowl licker and finger
Well that sounds great but can't you email me a virtual one?
Sheesh, I just peed a little re-reading what I wrote!
Yep. Just the children and grands is enough raucousness for us now.
Comaraderie with "others" has taken a backseat, in comparison to the
"old days" also. Things change, our work necessitates it, we age,
minds and attitudes shift, yet we often return to things that have
lost importance in this age and try and continue the skills and
I well remember and some of the things we did, such as the handmade
chocolates, are beyond our energy and time levels now as well. We
still do a few large, extended family things a sevearl times a year,
around holidays, and they abso-effing-lutely drain us. They have
become less frequent in the last few years.
Yep. In the past I didn't understand how my elders could lose
interest in cooking and all that stuff. Why would they go out to eat
so often? I now understand.
Yeppers. Elder grandson has been using the knife here since three
also, though he started not with one of the sharp ones, but had his
own that was not likely to cut to the bone or worse. He now uses the
same as we do. He has seen, on me, what a proper edge will do to
flesh and has learned not to hurry with a knife.
Heh heh, the kitchen whizz is one of the first they start with and has
a particular fascination for them...noise, action, results....gets no
better! We've not been able to run the whizz, nor the mixer, without
a youngster attached to hip for a long while. :-)
Pikelets? New to me. These?
If so, this is a great recipe for the younguns and soon to be
I don't think I've lost an interest in cooking and we certainly eat out far,
far less than we once used to do. In our case we seem to be spending more
time cooking but doing more basic and more inventive stuff.
I now cook a lot more bread and preserves than we did in the 80s - being
retired, I have more kitchen time. We also now spend more time inventing
recipes or ways to cook more produce from our garden. This is a real
challenge at this time of the year when we're approaching the traditional
time of the 'hungry gap' of Spring.
Our winter garden is now quite sad and not a great deal in it - broccoli,
silver beet (chard), potatoes (still in the ground) and a few other sad
looking things, so what to do with that lot?
Last night's main course was a vegetarian lasagna made with home made pasta
and steamed veg that included broccoli leaves, silver beet and a few other
greens gleaned from the garden.
And the bloody chooks have gone on strike and aren't laying! Not as many
eggs as there should be - lazy sods!
We haven't used the real whizz yet, but we'll get there.
We do a lot of camping and since I like to eat well whilst doing that, I
bought this gizmo and this is the devise he really loves using - sort of a
Yeah. Traditional afternoon/morning tea fare served with strawberry jam and
cream (an easy alternative to scones) - sort of a thick pancake batter
recipe and smallish - 4 inch max across and the ideal thing to make in an
electric frypan. More recipes here:
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