Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Cooking Up A Duck

Now just the mention of 'duck' calls for celebration! I offered to do the usual Sunday roast. Didn’t cook up a raging storm however, as I felt more under the weather than anything else…

In the cottage is a rule: One really needs to be half-dead before one stop eating. This includes the cats, kitten and dog.

The orange-a-la-Duck surprised even me, so I want to pay a tribute to food… and the lovers of food.

Did the thought ever cross your cooked or fried brains (mine is roasted), that cooking and food goes hand-in-hand and can turn out to be an almost embarrassing sensual matter?

Think of the following sensations in your mouth: Bursting flavours of summer-ripe apricot and pie spicy with winter scent…Dazzling summer fruit and zesty lemon or sweet orange with a touch of jasmine, lavender and pomegranate…

Nectar of the soul; mouth-watering and succulent juices overflowing to the extent of taste and smell intoxication…

Well, are you still with me?

If you could imagine yourself to be something hugely enjoyable in the class of something edible: What Would You Be?

I…now I like to imagine myself as a voluptuous and delicate 1st grade leg of young roast lamb. Basted and treated in the traditional and expertly gentle ways which the French are known for. I would be carefully selected at an open-air market, kept out of the cold in a warm kitchen in order to thaw and carefully placed in a not too hot oven. Slowly cooking over a low heat, all the flavours mingling and sizzling the language of food.

The chef will slather and baste me expertly with some more heady-scented rosemary, lemon juice, garlic cloves and a rich dark red wine…

I will simply burst with flavour.

Carved, selected and tasted with reverence by those seated around an oak table (without a cloth). The food lovers will soak themselves with tingling spice and flavour, washed down with mint-sauce, or cranberry and an unusual amount of aged wine from a French barrel splashing down their throats. All of which to be picked or licked slowly and with deep concentration.

So I thought:

Nigella Lawson may very well be a law unto herself when she breaks her eggs single-handedly… And Jamie Oliver delivers five-star kitchen performances, stripped naked of any false ambiance… but nothing comes close to true love for food. In the ordinary kitchen. The simplicity of daily cooking for myself, family or friends turns me into a diva flirting with taste, utensils and everything nearby. The smell of frying onions and portabella mushrooms drive me wild together with the mixing of an array of other spices and herbs.

So, this may very well be a confession from a South African lassie: Who said we can’t cook like the BBC cooking idols? I have to confess however not to having performed any naked kitchen cooking chores yet; although I believe one day there may be enough room for improvement on the matter.

...Icould be seduced to such liberating acts IF I am certain that all sharp knives and utensils have been put somewhere out of the way…

Last night I traversed one notch closer to becoming the next great chef: I cooked up Duck Risotto with a few secret ingredients - and I have no words as to why nobody out there yet wrote up such an intolerably delicious and unforgettably sexy dish!

If you’re still with me, not having chewed off your fingers or tongue…and if you find good food irresistible, not able to deny anything good in the name of Italian or Mediterranean juices… with the smell of fresh bread, pine & dust and exploding coffee machines…then I urge you to go and get Anthony Capella’s miracle book:

The Food of Love”.

1 comment:

The Dotterel said...

Ooohh, cruel. I'm too hungry to go looking for a cookbook!