zaterdag 11 september 2010

food from the books

"when he bring me the bread basket i see that the rolls are twisted and baked into adventurous
shapes. they bare all faintly and disarmingly zoological in their outlines. i chose one which is coiled likea snail with two horns sticking out. but i could also take one shaped like a sea cucumber or one which is a fanciful rendering of a scorpion in its death pangs.
the body of the bread is yielding like clay, and tastes of mould. the crust is thin, brittle, and yellow, flaking at the merest touch. bad dough badly baked.
the apset thing one can say about the cremonese rolls isthat they are intriguing.
this in itself is already a condemnation, because the job of the roll is to play second fiddle to other more important dishes. the roll should be to the meat what the secretary is to the executive: soothing, aiding, absorbing, and never domineering.
rolls, therefore, should look self-effacing, and when i come across rolls which rivet my attention by their very appearance i am seized at once with grave misgiving.
the rolls of cremona should not be classed under food but under arts and decoration, and treated
accordingly. the wise traveller will no more attemp to partake of them when he would break off and nibble the scroll of a fa├žade."

from the surprise of cremona, by edith templeton, published 1954

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