Tarragon Twosome (part two)

This recipe was originally called Pea, Tarragon and Cream Cheese Pithivier. Pithivier is a word of French origin, that, according to Wikipedia "is used on English menus as a pretentious way of saying pie". I'll get straight to le point and call it a pie, particularly as I've shaped mine into mini pies (as opposed to a hump) using a muffin tray.

One day Alex ducked into a kitchen shop and bought me a much-desired muffin tin, not realising the enormity of its cups. It's fine if you like making muffins modeled after those found heaving on shelves in coffee shops; cakes covertly operating as breakfast food. But I've found it more useful for pressing pastry into and producing personalised pies (say that five times fast). This method works a treat if you'd like to bake pies with different fillings at the same time, as I did on this occasion — half were veggie, half were meaty.


Tarragon Twosome (part one)

I hate to waste food, but find fresh herbs all too regularly end up in the compost caddy. You buy a pack of say, sage, for a recipe, use the tablespoon required and then the poor delicately scented little lamb’s ears get tossed back in the fridge, the last they hear is murmuring about how you’ll use it again. It holds out hope — surely she’s coming back for me — and then a week later it’s nestled in amongst the peelings and coffee grinds ready for composting. I’m sorry sage. I’m trying. This weekend another herb had better luck, as I chose two recipes to make on the same day that call for tarragon; a plant that would look at home swaying on the bottom of the sea.

Tarragon is a divisive flavour, and it certainly does not disappear in a dish. But I disagree with the common notion that it tastes of liquorice; based on the indisputable evidence that I detest liquorice and I like tarragon. Fennel, with its subtle sweetness, is a closer match. But trying to compare tarragon to other flavours is like trying to compare Bjork to other singers. Its taste is fascinatingly odd and unique.


It all started with chocolate

My first memory of being excited by food was triggered, unbeknownst to me at the time, by deceit. It was maternal deception, ripe for Greek tragedy. You’ll understand I’m not being dramatic when you hear I was brainwashed to believe I didn’t… like… chocolate.

For the first three years of my life my mother told me this, and naturally, I believed her. Instead, as a 'treat' I was offered carob. If you just involuntarily gagged reading that you'll appreciate the situation. This bitter, chalky, so-called chocolate substitute must've been thrust upon thousands of us born to hippie parents hellbent on healthy upbringings; marring what should've been happy chocolaty moments.
Exhibit A:

My mom laughs recounting the inevitable day I came running into the house shouting “Mommy, mommy, I DO like chocolate! I do!” I was breathless with discovery and giddy from my first kiss; a Hershey’s Kiss. No one remembers who gave it to me now, but I salute you, cocoa hero. My mom says her reaction to my epiphany was, “This kid is smarter than we thought,” (uh, thanks) and she knew the times, oh they were a changing. From then on, the healthy upbringing continued, but chocolate was allowed for special occasions. Victory!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...