Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Bach's back for lunch!

I guess it's patio weather, if you don't mind bugs dropping by to sample and/or shit on your food.

That means today we have Bach's Lunch: Picnic & Patio Classics (by the Junior Committee in Cleveland's Severance Hall to benefit the Cleveland Orchestra, fifth printing, October 1974). I'm not sure why cherubs are trying to steal Bach's famous guitar case full of fruit, cheese, wine, and bread, but that doesn't seem to bother him too much. He's still got his glass of wine to hold precariously as he breaks the fourth wall by staring right at me. Way to be creepy, Bach! (And don't tell anyone I was editing this in my underwear.)

The recipes in this collection are that special blend of midwest-limited-money-and-grocery-availability meets desire-to-be-fancy.

That's how we get burgers fried around an "olive-ice ball" (to "keep the burger juicy"), served in French bread bathed in a thickened wine, veggie, and ground beef sauce. (And yes, the sauce goes over the bread, not the burger. This is a fancy sandwich, so it's knife-and-fork territory.)

For more fancy ground beef action, check out the meat loaf:

Taking a cue from the time's Beef Wellington craze, we have Meat Loaf Wellington, for when you want to impress people and you only really have the ingredients for meat loaf and maybe some chicken livers to dress it up, but plenty of time to cook the meat loaf, cool it down, make your own pastry, wrap up the meat loaf, and bake the whole thing again.

My "favorite" vegetable even gets the posh treatment:

Call it Celery Au Vin, Fines Herbes if you want, but I can't get past the idea of wasting good wine on boring-ass celery.

Or for those who want to make a big production out of the veggie platter (maybe so it will go with the Meat Loaf Wellington):

Vegetable Salad Platter combines the elegance of a big old mound of potato-pea-carrot-lemon-apple salad with the fancy garnishes of canned asparagus and carrots in a sea of yet more peas.

I admire the desire to make things special when the ways to do it are kind of limited, but I also think Bach is wise limiting himself to whatever wine, fruit, and cheese he can smuggle in his guitar case. Maybe he's watching me so closely because he thinks I'm more likely to steal his stash than those cherubs.

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