Food From Fiction 5: Sirine’s Saffron Chicken

“The recipes…are little more than lists, no cooking instructions or temperatures, but scattered among the pages are brief reflections on the nature of animals, flowers, people, and God. Sirine browses through the book, lingering equally over the reflections and the lists of ingredients, which seem to have the rhythms and balance of poetry. There is one for a roast chicken that she decides she may try preparing for a daily special: chicken, saffron, garlic, lemons, oil, vinegar, rosemary.” – from Crescent by Diana Abu-Jaber (W.W. Norton & Company, 2003)

This is Marie, contributing a story about a roast chicken inspired by the book Crescent. I must confess, I actually ran across a description of the chicken before I’d read the book, but I had saffron and it sounded so good I had to give it a try. Then I checked out the book to see where the recipe came from, once we found it was good. Continue reading “Food From Fiction 5: Sirine’s Saffron Chicken”

Food from Fiction 4: Sipsey’s Fried Green Tomatoes

When Mrs. Threadgoode saw what she had on her plate, she clapped her hands, as excited as a child on Christmas. There before her was a plate of perfectly fried green tomatoes and fresh cream-white corn, six slices of bacon, with a bowl of baby lima beans on the side and four huge light and fluffy buttermilk biscuits.” — from Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe, by Fannie Flagg (Random House, 1987)


This is Marie, contributing an article about a Yankee trying to cook like a Southerner and having a rather hard time of it. Mind you, I’ve lived in Georgia longer than all the other places combined, but it seems you just can’t take the Minnesota out of me. Continue reading “Food from Fiction 4: Sipsey’s Fried Green Tomatoes”

Food from Fiction 3: Sam-I-Am’s Green Eggs and Ham

Say! I like green eggs and ham!
I do! I like them, Sam-I-am!
And I would eat them in a boat.
And I would eat them with a goat…

And I will eat them in the rain.
And in the dark. And on a train.
And in a car. And in a tree.
They are so good, so good, you see!” — from Green Eggs and Ham, by Dr. Seuss (Random House, 1960)

This is Marie, contributing an article about Green Eggs & Ham. I was in somewhat of a whimsical mood when making this selection, which is hardly a recipe at all. Continue reading “Food from Fiction 3: Sam-I-Am’s Green Eggs and Ham”

Food from Fiction 2: Nero Wolfe’s Poached and Truffled Broilers

As I had holiday traffic to cope with, it was half past nine by the time we got home and washed and seated at the dinner table. A moving car is no place to give Wolfe bad news, or good news either for that matter, and there was no point in spoiling his dinner, so I waited until after we had finished with the poached and truffled broilers and broccoli and stuffed potatoes and herbs, and salad and cheese, and Fritz had brought coffee to us in the office, to open the bag. Wolfe was reaching for the remote-control television gadget, to turn it on so as to have the pleasure of turning it off again…” – from “Fourth of July Picnic” by Rex Stout (aka “The Labor Union Murder,” in Look, July 9, 1957), reprinted in And Four to Go (Viking, 1958)


This is Marie, contributing the second of my articles about food in fiction. This time it is a recipe from the completely wonderful source The Nero Wolfe Cookbook by Rex Stout (and, although not on the cover, Barbara Burns who is credited with testing many of the recipes and providing the final wording). Continue reading “Food from Fiction 2: Nero Wolfe’s Poached and Truffled Broilers”

Food from Fiction 1: Mickey Dade’s Rice-A-Roni

Five minutes later, Mickey laid the lamb out flat on the grill and covered it. Then, back in the kitchen, he took a saucepan down from its rung on the wall. He put it on the stove over high heat, throwing in half a stick of butter and some olive oil. In another minute, he’d added chopped shallots, garlic, thyme and rosemary, some allspice, and three cups of the chicken stock that he made from scratch whenever he started to get low. Some things you simply couldn’t cut corners on.

He stirred a minute more, added a cup and a half of Arborio rice and some orzo, then turned the heat all the way down to the lowest simmer and covered the pan. This was his own personal version of Rice-A-Roni, the San Francisco treat, a simple pilaf, but he liked his strategy of first making the kitchen so fragrant that it drew his roommates to the feast whether they were inclined to eat or not.” – from Treasure Hunt by John Lescroart (Dutton, 2010)


This is Marie, contributing an article that is only tangentially about cooking some rice.

Some time ago, I saw this lovely series of photographs documenting iconic meals from various books, such as a photo of the tea party from Alice In Wonderland (that was my favorite, followed by the photo of the potatoes and eggs from The Secret Garden) here: http://www.brainpickings.org/index.php/2014/04/16/fictitous-dishes-dinah-fried-book/

It was such a lovely photography series that it was an immediate inspiration to do something similar here. However, an immediate stumbling block came up – the dishes that were were lovely as photos were also not precisely appropriate to this blog (how many of you would actually want to cook a potato in a campfire? And then eat it? Please be honest!) Not only that, but I am constitutionally unable to do something exactly the way someone else did it. Continue reading “Food from Fiction 1: Mickey Dade’s Rice-A-Roni”