Monday, May 01, 2006

Dastardly deeds done in the dark...

With a ridiculous penchant for alliteration, years of thinking in head rhymes, it wasn't really surprising that the above phrase popped into my mind one of the first times I ventured out into the deep dark wee hours of the morning with my new charge Gilly, aka Kris Kringle, to allow him to 'water the bushes'.

Dark appears to be a popular adjective with the literati lately. Just look what I've read these past two weeks: Thomas Perry's Nightlife (night is dark, right?); Anne Perry's Dark Assassin; Stuart Woods' Dark Harbor and I'm on the waiting list for Dark Tort, Diane Mott Davidson's newest offering. See the recurring theme? Do they consult each other? All, by the way, are fun, fast reads. Great entertainment.

Catch it if you can. Theater Downtown has a dynamite little production currently playing, Take Me Out by Richard Greenberg. It's easy to see why the critics are raving and the performances are selling out. The author's message is heart-rending, the characters are well cast and the set is amazing considering the small space. There's nudity and coarse language, after all it's a locker room. Support local theater but more importantly - treat yourself to live theater at its best.

Here's a fun site with a daily download that will give you pause for thought or at least bring a smile to your face. I've always been a fan of, "If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with bull" attributed to WC Fields, though I always thought there were four more letters in that last word. I was surprised to find a like phrase from none other than Harry S Truman, "If you can't convince them, confuse them." Do you think someone suggested that to GW?

What's Cooking?
I realize not everyone is an eggplant fan. But for those of you who are and especially for those whose mouths water at the thought of eggplant parmesan, but hesitate to make it because of all the prep steps, Pierre Franey has taught me a fast easy preparation that by-passes the breading/frying steps in a traditional parmesan-style dish by simply peeling and roasting slices that have been slathered with a butter/parmesan slurry. I've taken the dish one step further by topping it after baking with some of the tomato pizza sauce from a previous post. This is a week night possibility since it's a total of 20 minutes to prep and cook the dish and it makes a wonderful side with a chicken breast or pork chop. I can make a meal of it on its own with a big greeen salad washed down with a mellow merlot.
Aubergines au Four Parmigiana
(Baked eggplant parmesan)
1 firm eggplant
4 - 5 TBS unsalted butter at room temperature
3 TBS grated Parmesan cheese
Salt & pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 400 degrees
Peel the eggplant and trim off the ends. Cut the eggplant into half inch thick slices.
Blend the butter and cheese and spread on both sides of eggplant slices. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Arrange the slices on a baking sheet in one layer (I cover sheet with parchment paper for ease of cleanup). Bake 15 minutes or until eggplant is tender when pierced. Serve as is or with a generous dollop of tomato sauce (see 4/17 post) on each slice. More fast and easy whole food. Enjoy!

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