Food, Inside And Out
I opened a bag of fresh spring salad, tossed a heap on the plate, and turned my back. Returning with vinegar in hand, I narrowly missed dousing this poor little guy, already insulted by having spent a night in the fridge. He’d been in the food, and was now on the food, and in a certain sense he was food, an inside-out food like all of his kind. But although salade à l’escargot might tempt some, I set him free in a rain-drenched bit of garden.
Sometimes the secret insides of the food are what it’s all about. If an egg were only the white I doubt that we’d eat it, but give us a running yolk and the ante ups considerably. Of course, every egg we eat is a chicken that we won’t be serving; in addition to being delicious in its own right the egg’s also a pre-food, as it were.
But while milk is a pre-food in the same way, I think we can all agree that a perfectly ripe Mont d’Or has a lot more to offer. Unprepossessing on the outside, a bit smelly and tattered-looking, it opens into an impeccably creamy splendor.
And speaking of creamy splendor, sometimes it’s the outside of the food that calls to us the loudest. When a guest arrived the other night and offered us this beautifully wrapped mystery in a towel, as eager as we were for dessert I could scarcely bear to open it up.
The lovely gateau Savoyard inside made up for the destruction of the clever packaging, but I did get a lesson in towel-tying so that I can replicate the pleasure myself the next time someone asks me to bring dessert.
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