May 22, 2012
CALF'S BRAINS WITH BLACK BUTTER
"Allow 1 set of brains--or more, for true addicts--for each serving. Soak the brains in cold water for 1 hour or so and drain. Add 1 sliced onion, a bit of chopped parsley and celery, 1 tablespoon of salt, and 1/2 cup of vinegar to enough boiling water to cover the brains, and simmer them gently for 1/2 hour. Drain and when cool tenderly remove the skin and any bits of bone the butcher may have left clinging to their surface. For each 2 sets of brains melt 1/2 cup of butter (or as much more as can be spared) in a shallow pan and allow it to brown slightly...."
--From At Home on the Range
Writer, performer, and purveyor of fake facts, John Hodgman is the "RESIDENT EXPERT" on the Daily Show. He has written two bestsellers of fictive non-fiction: The Areas of My Expertise, and More Information than You Require. The final book in the trilogy, That Is All, covers the end of the world, sports, and wine. In conversation with Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love, the two will discuss At Home on the Range, a cookbook originally written by Gilbert's great-grandmother, Margaret Yardley Potter, and now reprinted for the first time.
Gilbert rediscovered the dusty, yellowed, first edition hardcover of At Home on the Range , after having only been peripherally aware of the volume. In reading it, she soon found that she had stumbled upon a book far ahead of its time. In her workaday cookbook, Potter espoused the importance of farmer's markets and ethnic food (Italian, Jewish, and German), derided preservatives and culinary shortcuts, and generally celebrated a devotion to epicurean adventures. Part scholar--she includes a great recipe from 1848 for boiled sheep head--and part crusader for a more open food conversation than currently existed, it's not hard to see from where Elizabeth Gilbert inherited both her love of food, and her warm, infectious prose.