Thursday, May 14, 2009

Midweek Kitchen Confessions 15: My Last Meal

I'm intrigued by this book:

I'd like to own it--to add to my collection of food porn. I'm interested to read it, to see which chefs choose comfort over haute cuisine. To see who confronts the possibility of their death with what type of attitude: who celebrates and who contemplates.

Before reading it though (and thereby being influenced by all of them), I decided to try this little exercise myself. The idea is to answer 5 questions:

1. What would be your last meal on earth?
2. What would be the setting for the meal?
3. What would you drink with your meal?
4. Who would be your dining companions?
5. Who would prepare the meal?

I came up with four scenarios. The first two are purely impossible fantasy.

Scenario 1: I would eat my Dad's marinated flank steak (grilled to perfectly rare), a steamed artichoke (perfectly tender, and with lots of butter for dipping), and for dessert, angel food cake with cherry buttercream frosting. I would eat it on a hill under a giant honey locust tree. I would drink limeade (probably gallons of it). I would eat it with all of my immediate and extended family. The preparation would be overseen by my parents (as only they know how to make these dishes the way I want them), but the actual preparation would be done by people I don't know so that all the people I do know could sit down at one enormous picnic table. And there would be plenty for everyone. (These are the foods I used to request for my birthday dinner when I was a kid.)

Scenario 2: I would eat my Grandma Zine's meatloaf, mashed potatoes, potato bread (piping hot with lots of butter to spread on it), and for dessert, my Grandma Zine's cherry pie (with real whipped cream on top). I would eat it in the dining room of the home I lived in as a child. I would drink bourbon on the rocks. Again, I would eat it with all of my immediate and extended family. The preparation would be overseen by my Grandma Zine and my mother, but again, the actual preparation would be done by someone else so the two of them could sit and enjoy.

Scenario 3: I would eat pork roast (roasted perfectly, not too dry, with lots of nicely peppered and salted crispy fat on the outside), pasta with tomatoes and mushrooms sauteed in a garlic-basil-lemon cream sauce, a salad of mixed greens (with arugula please!) with garlic vinaigrette dressing, and for dessert, chocolate gateau with raspberry puree from Cocolat (a long-gone bakery in Berkeley). I would eat it in my current dining room. I would drink Clos du Bois Marlstone. I would eat it with my husband and my two children (and they would be well-behaved and perfect conversationalists). I would prepare the meal.

Scenario 4: I would eat a dessert extravaganza. Creme brulee. Chocolate pecan pie. Nestle Toll House cookies (dipped in milk). Bailey's chocolate chip cheesecake. Cherry pie. Ice cream from the Milky Way Farm in Pennsylvania. Wine cake. Apple pie. Lemon meringue pie. Chocolate cream puffs. Dark chocolate California brittle and Scotchmallow candies from Sees. Girl Scouts' Samoa cookies. I would eat it in my bed. I would drink coffee with cream. I would eat it with my husband. I would prepare the dishes. (My husband and I have often talked about the fact that I have a "dessert stomach". Even if I'm completely full after a meal, I always have room for dessert. I couldn't let this exercise go without an entire meal dedicated to that stomach.)

In case you didn't know, I'm a little sentimental. And I choose comfort food.

Now you. I want to know what your answers to these questions would be.

1 comment:

pinky said...

Having given it a couple of days I have come up with the following scenario - just one.

I would have a Mexican feast. Since I am addicted to handmade white corn tortillas - I would have them fresh out of the steamer with pulled pork (shoulder or butt roast cooked for 12 hours in a slow cooker with one can of chopped,mild green chiles, one cup of chopped fresh cilantro and two cans of low sodium beef broth) and fresh cilantro and crumbled Cotija cheese. There would be fresh guacamole on the side made with perfectly ripened avocados, fresh lime juice, chopped white onions, cilantro and chopped fresh tomatoes and garlic powder with the best corn chips available handy for scooping up generous portions of the guacamole. Ice cold, fresh-squeezed limeade would be my beverage of choice. For dessert I would have two homemade ice creams - chocolate and English walnut.

Not only am I addicted to homemade tortillas, but I was brought up on pork. Being a California girl - the Mexican food comes easily for me - avocados grew on our backyard tree, lime juice is an all time favorite, and there are only two flavors of ice cream in the world as far as I'm concerned and I would have them both to satisfy my love of each.

This feast would be served in our present home with ALL of the family present - talking, laughing and telling stories. I would prepare the meal and make sure everyone had their fill of food, fun and love.