Saturday, December 13, 2003

I just finished reading Near A Thousand Tables: A History of Food, by Felipe Fernandez-Armesto. Of course I love reading about food no matter what, but this was a particularly fascinating read that I whipped through in no time. It's very accessible and interesting, with all sorts of tidbits and anecdotes. The author is a little too fond of bad jokes, and every now and then a random sentence appeared in a paragraph, as if he suddenly thought of something interesting and tossed it in without care for relevance, but overall he has a good flow and style. My favorite part was his discussion of the Columbian Exchange, when various food staples began to make their ways back and forth across the Atlantic. It's hard to imagine America without wheat or beef, but neither originated here; while Europe would not be the same without corn, potatoes, or chocolate.

I was surprised that the book didn't really inspire me to cook, or even to eat, but I did get the idea for tonight's dinner from the author's mention of the Native American triumvirate of nutrience: corn, beans, and squash. Since I had an acorn squash that needed to be dealt with, and some rather sad leftover black bean soup, I simmered it all up with a little frozen corn for a hearty dish served over hot cornbread. Not bad.

Went out with Odious today and got a cute little Christmas tree that just fits on our kitchen table (the only possible spot for such a decoration). It's sparsely decorated with multi-colored mini lights, a red wooden bead string, a few Pascha eggs, and a couple of ornaments from my grandmother, but it looks festive and has added the Christmas spirit to our abode. If only I had time to be in the Christmas spirit! With the wedding just a week away, I am burdened with all the last minute details that I desperately don't want to have to think about. Ah well.

No comments: