Speaking of Peeps

Thursday, February 26, 2009

As if by magic, at the mere mention of them, peeps have re-entered my life. Jennings Brody, the proprietress of Parker and Otis in Durham came into dinner the other night and as has become her custom, she came bearing gifts. Before opening her store she had been a candy company representative for among other things, Peeps, so she has the proper connections.Recipes include things like Peeps fondue and Peeps meringue tartlettes.

I was a guest today at a luncheon at the Sienna Hotel in honor of Linda Long who has written a cook book entitled Great Chefs Cook Vegan. I get an utterly startled look from everyone to whom I tell this. But I'm interested in all kinds of cooking and this meal was quite impressive. This was an elaborate affair and Chef Adam Rose's food was beautiful as well as delicious. A couple of components that stand out are the roasted seeds of the spaghetti squash used in a vegetable melange. They were salty and spicy and a nice surprise. I've always failed when I attempted this. Another were the pickled beet stems in the same dish. Then there was a dynamite yerba mate sorbet floating in fresh strawberry soup, the dessert by guest chef Jason Cunningham of the Washington Duke Inn. Each course was accompanied by a different wine. I don't usually have five glasses of wine in the middle of the day. Thank God for naps.

I've begun our annual ritual of serving a corned ham every Saturday between Mardi Gras and Easter. Every Wednesday, I get a small fresh ham from Eliza McLean. I salt it myself and two Saturdays later it is served. Each season it gains more devotees. I only do one a week, so when it's gone it's gone. We've remained fairly busy at Crook's but this week is Spring Break, so perhaps we'll be able to pay more attention to important things. Like basketball.

posted by Bill Smith at 8:58 PM


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