I have decided I'm going to make Floating Island this week-end. I have no idea why, except that "Julie and Julia" has been on cable for the last two weeks and meringue with praline floating in a sea of crème anglaise sounds WAY better than stuffing entrails into a duck. I have never really understood French cooking anyway. Who in their right mind would finish weeding their garden, brush the dirt off their hands and think "Hmmmm, maybe I'll just EAT the snails. If I pour enough wine, butter and garlic over them it'll probably kill the taste. And I doubt that a little Snairol will hurt anyone." Of course, they thought this in French, which made it all sound a great deal more elegant.
Don't get me wrong, I've eaten escargot. More than once and by choice. If it weren't for the snail it would be quite tasty, and it's served to the most discriminating of diners on lovely specialized plates with these strange spring loaded tong things. Remember the dinner in "Pretty Woman"? Yeah, like those. I guess the Frenchman who decided to see what would happen if he ate some of those puppies was also an inventor. Or had a bunch of scrap metal he was just dying to use.
My husband LOVES escargot. I find it okay. If it's served I eat it. If it's on the menu, I opt for the pate. People then invariably take it upon themselves to tell me that I shouldn't be afraid of snails, I should try one, they're really quite delicious. This indicates to me that they KNOW snails don't fall into any known food group, they spring to their defense before they've even been maligned. The snails, not the diners.
These same people will then taste my pate (and no, I don't eat foie gras on principle, I DO think that's animal cruelty) and pronounce it a little slice of heaven. Want to see something really funny? Take those same people to Canter's one night and watch the looks on their faces when I scarf down a liverwurst on rye with deli mustard. Preferably with a bottle of Löwenbräu.
So anyway, the hubster and I were married 25 years ago last Tuesday. As usual, we each waited for the other to mention this momentous occasion. I think something like this should be celebrated with a large party, preferably with gifts involved. The hubster thinks it's an occasion for hazard pay. I suppose there's something to be said for both of these ideas. So we did what we always do. We each waiting for the other one to say something and ended up saying nothing. I should be used to this by now. There WAS mention of the bottle of Famous Gate that's been waiting for a special occasion but then the hubster went down for his regularly scheduled blood donation and forgot to eat. So, by 8pm he was in bed asleep, my sons and I celebrated with a quart of Dryer's Cookies and Cream and Kate Gosslin getting booted from Dancing With the Stars.
I'm getting used to it. I guess.
But I'm still going to try the Floating Island, in honor of the now past event. The one in "Mastering the Art of French Cooking". Making my own pralines seems to be involved but what the hell. It sounds like more fun than doing the laundry.