“Well, basically, there was this little dot, right? And the dot went bang and the bang expanded. Energy formed into matter, matter cooled, matter lived, the amoeba to fish, to fish to fowl, to fowl to frog, to frog to mammal, the mammal to monkey, to monkey to man, amo amas amat, quid pro quo, memento mori, ad infinitum, sprinkle on a little bit of grated cheese and leave under the grill till Doomsday.”
– Johnny (David Thewliss) in Naked
Buenos Aires – The week began with fowl – chicken in particular – the plan had been one chicken and one duck dish, but lack of good duck and one other key ingredient for the recipe that my Brazilian cooking professor wanted to teach me negated the latter. Instead, we talked about it and then prepared three different traditional styles of chicken – the originally planned xinxim de galinha, chicken stewed in cashew and tomato sauce; a pollo con molho de choclo, or grilled chicken breast in a creamed corn sauce; and pollo con maracujá, chicken in a passionfruit and carrot sauce. All delicious! I’m disappointed that this was the last of the four session course (I do recommend it for anyone local, and am happy to provide the info for contacting Eduardo – you’ll need to be fluent in either Spanish or Portuguese…).
Here at Casa Saltshaker, group two worked their way through a quintet of contorni recipes – the braised endive, the peppers in bagna cauda, and the fried fennel from the previous week, plus a twist on eggplant parmesan using tiny little baby eggplant, and roasted porobello mushroom caps filled with pumpkin seeds and garlic. That was all yesterday. Today, group one launched their way into filleting fish and then making a trio of dishes – olive oil poached razor clams, Mario Batali’s “sicilian lifeguard” calamari, and my own breaded pomfret with a green olive, bacon, and chili topping. New photos, of course, on the flickr stream. Group three is waiting in the wings to start towards the end of the month after group one winds down, and meanwhile, I’m thinking through various ideas for the next series of classes… I’m happy to consider suggestions if you’re interested in a particular topic.