Sunday, April 22, 2007

Cooking and eating

Some observers might consider that a solitary man such as me is behaving hedonistically when he gets involved in fine cooking. Be that as it may, I like cooking, particularly in my well-equipped kitchen at Gamone. Besides, it means that I eat well, all the time. Over the last decade or so, the only time I recall eating junk food was out in Australia last year, when I was obliged to frequent a McDonald's because they had a wifi hotspot enabling me to connect to the Internet.

It's the asparagus season. This thin dark-green variety comes from Andalusia in Spain. After boiling them in water, I peppered them and soaked them in oil and balsamic vinegar from Modena in Italy.

This apple tart uses commercial pastry, because I'm lazy. There's a bottom (hidden) layer of raisins and poppy seeds, then slices of unskinned apples sprinkled with sugar and cinnamon. When it's almost baked, I submerge the apples in a mixture of an egg, cream and milk, then I put the tart back in the oven for five minutes.

Talking about eating, there was an interesting article in yesterday's Le Monde about the major role of fruit and vegetables in the constant combat against today's notorious killers: cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular problems.

During my childhood, somebody brainwashed me into believing the popular dictum: An apple a day keeps the doctor away.

If there wasn't a constant stock of apples on my kitchen table, I would feel kind of naked, or underfed. Incidentally, the apples are stored here in an ideal container, made out of the bark of a cork oak, which appears to play a mysterious role in their conservation. Natacha gave me this delightful object when she was living in the Riviera region where these trees are to be found.

Now, it's six o'clock in the afternoon. So, let's stop talking about superficial things such as food, and get back to French politics...

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