Monday, 8 July 2013

What is the Opposite of a Foodgasm?

I like to think of myself as a bit of a Foodie. I like to eat food, I like to make food.
I may not go all out adventurous and try the gizzards and innards gourmet delight du jour or anything blood related (I may like to read about Vampires, but I certainly don't want to eat like one) and don't get me started on bone marrow, eugh. But, I do go for ethnic variety, and things that are out of the usual ordinary.

I am a regular viewer of the Food Network, and collect books from some of my favourite celebrity chefs (I'm looking at your Bobby Flay and Rachael Ray!)

When I think of Bobby Flay I get excited. Um, rather, when I think of his food I get excited (my feelings for the man are personal, although not really a secret, the way that man carves a turkey... LOL)
My taste buds rev up, my mind fires and I get ready. (I have eaten at his Bar Americain NYC location so I have experienced the foodgasmic bliss, and have successfully followed his recipes,  it's not just wishful thinking.)

I figured the man could do no wrong, but I have come across one recipe that didn't even have me wanting something more, it just turned me off completely.

Last summer we took a family vacation, roadtripping it down to Florida. We passed through the southern states and I desperately wanted to try Fried Green Tomatoes; a Southern staple that has many salivating at the thought. Alas, when we stopped in Georgia for lunch, we went to a Ruby Tuesdays, nothing especially regionally special there. I went without the Fried Green Tomatoes.

Recently the movie starring Jessica Tandy was on TV and it awakened my desire to try the dish again. I'm sure I won't be finding any restaurants in Montreal that would satisfy the craving so I decided to make them myself. I searched the internet for recipes and found one on the Food Network's site by Bobby Flay.
He has never led me wrong before, right?

His recipe (along with all other I could find) called for cornmeal, as well as the obvious, green tomatoes.
No green tomatoes to be found, so I substituted firm yellowy red ones. I also couldn't find any golden cornmeal, so I got the white, I really didn't think it would make that much of a difference.

The results were awful. There was no golden brown outside, it ended up with pale white discs, no matter how long I cooked them for (or at how high a heat.) The only thing that changed was how hard the, for lack of a better word, shell was. This is what people get excited about?

Also included was a recipe for a remoulade dipping sauce, which was okay, but tasted too eggy.

I won't print or link to the recipe, I can't do that to anyone.
I won't include a picture, because they were so uninspiring.

Did I do something really wrong?
Is there another recipe you would recommend?

Book Review: True Love (Nantucket Brides Trilogy)

True Love by Jude Deveraux

Format: eBook via Netgalley
Publisher: Randon House Publishing Group - Ballantine
Imprint: Ballantine Books

From the Publisher: Jude Deveraux, the New York Times bestselling author of unforgettable romance, returns with a breathtaking first book in a fantastic new series—the Nantucket Brides trilogy. Set on the magical Massachusetts island, True Love introduces characters from a new generation of Montgomery-Taggerts, the beloved family from Deveraux’s classic novels.

Just as Alix Madsen is finishing up architectural school, Adelaide Kingsley dies and wills her, for one year, the use of a charming nineteenth-century Nantucket house. The elderly woman’s relationship to the Madsen family is a mystery to the spirited Alix—fresh from a romantic breakup—but for reasons of her own Alix accepts the quirky bequest, in part because it gives her time to plan her best friend’s storybook wedding.

But unseen forces move behind the scenes, creaking Kingsley House’s ancient floorboards. It seems that Adelaide Kingsley had a rather specific task for Alix: to solve the strange disappearance of one of the Kingsley women, Valentina, more than two hundred years ago. If that wasn’t troubling enough, Alix must deal with the arrogant (and extremely good-looking) architect Jared Montgomery, who is living in the property’s guesthouse.

Unbeknown to Alix, Jared has been charged with looking after her while she lives on the island—an easy task for him, considering the undeniable chemistry between the two. But Jared harbors secrets of his own, which, if revealed, may drive a wedge between the pair.

With a glorious Nantucket wedding on the horizon, sparks fly, and the ghosts of the past begin to reveal themselves—some of them literally. Finding their lives inextricably entwined with the turbulent fortunes of their ancestors, Alix and Jared discover that only by righting the wrongs of the past can they hope to be together.

When I was growing up, my family and I would go shopping almost every weekend (with a house of six, we were always needing something.) As we got older we were left to our own devices, and invariably I would always end up in the bookstore. One such weekend, when I was 14 or 15 years old, I actually had money to spend! I combed the racks figuring out what to buy, decisions decisions. It was the end of the day and my parent were ready to go, but I did not want to leave without buying a book! In the corner of the store they had book special and packages, my mother picked up one and suggested it. It was a pack of two novels, Night in Shining Armour and Remembrance by some author named Jude Deveraux. Not a tweeny book like the Babysitter's Club, but actual Adult Novels. I read the backs and agreed, they seemed interesting.

That night I curled into my bed and opened the first book, and immediately fell in love. From that day I would greedily devour any Jude Deveraux book that I could get my hands on, and regularly re-read my favourites. Her books are like warm fuzzy socks and chocolate biscuits, or a beef stew with lots of bread and butter. Comfort. Filling. Home.

Once again, we have a winner. The magic is still there.

Alix is a traditional perfect Jude Deveraux heroine, and no, that is not rail thin and sweet, she's perfect because she's like me, like you, or how we want to be. She's witty and smart, always with a sharp retort, and she knows exactly how to push our hero's buttons. And she's curvy. She can pack away junk food like a pro (I would know!)

Our hero, Jared loves it, and thinks she's sexy. He can't keep his hands off of her, but does because he made a promise (don't you worry though, sexy times abound!)

You couldn't call Jared a hero to his face, he's every-man. But, he truly is Alix's hero, not not just because they are the couple of the story, but because she's a fledgling architect, and he is The Architect. Match. Made. In. Heaven.

Through the course of the books we meet many characters; Caleb Kingsley (the ghost of Jared's 5xgreat grandfather, who initially only Jared can see), Alix's overbearing  mother, her father and a cast of island locals. Many of which, happily enough will be the focus of the future books. And for long time fans, we also meet back up with the modern day Taggerts and Montgomerys, who will also be in the following books.

I can't say that if you like a certain book you should read this. What I can say, is, if you like good books, if you like your heroines sharp and smart and your heroes sexy, if you like sagas, if you like either a hint or giant helping of paranormal, you should read this book.

Jude and her assistants are regularly active on Facebook, and I regularly read their posts. Sometimes they may write about what Jude is doing, where she is going, but on the best days, it's about what she is writing. Having read her posts all throughout the writing of this book, I feel involved. It's a nice feeling.

I eagerly await the next book in the Nantucket Brides Trilogy (tentatively titled Prince Charming)

True Love is available for purchase tomorrow, July 9th at, and as well as other book retailers.