[Sca-cooks] [Sca-Cooks] To 10 pantry items

Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius adamantius1 at verizon.net
Sun Aug 5 14:57:51 PDT 2007

On Aug 5, 2007, at 4:59 PM, Adele de Maisieres wrote:

>> The only time I've ever heard a major complaint [...] (as opposed  
>> to the ill-informed who just knee-jerk
>> repeat the xenophobe mantra, "rotten fish" over and over again
>> without ever coming within a mile of it),
> Oh, don't get me started on that kind of attitude, Adamantius.

Okay. But do you feel I am inadequately opinionated on this subject  
already? I was trying to be polite! ;-)

On a tangential note, my wife and I discovered yesterday that the  
local South American bakery (bakeries, of course, being shops that  
make and sell stuff to go with really good coffee; this place seems  
to focus on Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru) have greatly increased their  
product line for hot food of a non-baked variety (their baked goods  
are lovely, too). We went in and pointed at objects that looked  
interesting, but whose identity we could mostly only speculate on. I  
recognized a few of them, but nothing turned out to be made from  
bullfrog noses: the most terrifying thing was the morcilla, which is  
a blood sausage, here made with rice, pork -- meat and blood, that  
is, and seasoned, apparently with cloves, and then, when cooked, cut  
into sections and sauced with a sweet yellow pepper sauce. Dzayumn!

Equally scary, because it could have been anything up to and  
including a fried baby head, for all I knew, was what turned out to  
be a variant on many cultures' papas rellenas. To some people this is  
a smallish fritter made with mashed potato and a ground beef filling,  
but this was half a potato (red-skinned, slightly waxy and sweet)  
with the pulp scooped out, stuffed with what appeared to be a chunky  
beef, rice, and sofrito stew (rumors on websites suggest it really  
should be oxtail stew; this might have been brisket, but it was  
killer rich), all dipped or rolled in a thick coating of mashed- 
potato batter (lots of egg yolk) and deep-fried until golden and crispy.

I think Ceandra enjoyed having the experience many people have when  
they go for dim sum: I'll have one of those, and one of those, and  
one of those, and is that too much food? Well, okay, I'll have one of  
those, too. Oh, and one of those. I came all this way, I can't leave  
without one of those, can I? (I think she's ballooned up to about 108  
pounds.) After several additions, our total came to about $14, until  
she who must be obeyed decided she wanted to try the chicken stew  
(genuine fowl), which came plated with a small portion of salad,  
rice, beans, and, mysteriously, to us, a small piece of corn on the  
cob. Now the bill was an unprecedented $17.

We finally left with our mountainous bag of food (we'd done a lot of  
walking in the morning and were tired), having been enthusiastic but  
unsuccessful in our bid to spend all of a $20 bill. Hmmm. We didn't  
try the tamale-like objects. Maybe next time.

I wonder if we got anything fermented...


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