A Harte Appetite

Every Tuesday at 7:31 a.m. and 5:18 p.m., Tom Harte shares a few thoughts on food and shares recipes. 

A founder of “My Daddy’s Cheesecake,” a bakery/café in Cape Girardeau, a  food columnist for The Southeast Missourian, and a cookbook author, he also blends his passion for food with his passion for classical music in his daily program, The Caffe Concerto.

Local support for A Harte Appetite comes from Cyclewerx.

flickr user Whitney (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)

According to a recent article in Men's Health Magazine, the masculinity of salads has always been suspect. I suppose it's true that if real men don't eat quiche, they probably shun salads as well. Especially to the extent that salad may conjure dainty lunches for ladies. 

There's nothing dainty about pasta salads, those robust combinations of noodles, vegetables, and often cheese and meat, bound together by a distinctively flavored dressing. When it comes to one of these, making do with a salad for lunch -- or possibly dinner -- becomes thinkable, even to me. 

flickr user David Pursehouse (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)

The comedian Buddy Hackett used to tell the story about a man who didn't know anything about farming but who bought a farm anyway. A friend asked him what he was going to plant. "Razor blades and cabbages," the would-be farmer told him. "What could you possibly get out of that?" his friend asked. The landowner replied, "Coleslaw."

You can't blame that man for experimenting with "cutting-edge" agricultural methods. After all, coleslaw is the perfect accompaniment to grilled meats, chicken, and fish that so often are the mainstays of summer meals.

flickr user Delphine Ménard (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/)

Not long ago the Hungarian government banned the sale of paprika marketed by three local companies because it was found to have been adulterated with a South American strain of a spice that might prove dangerous. Subsequently, seven senior members of the three companies were indicted.

The resulting scandal demonstrated that in Hungary they take their paprika seriously. Just as seriously as the Italians take their pasta, the Japanese take their rice or the English their tea.

Flickr user robinmcnicoll (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)

I enjoy baking cookies. It gives me great satisfaction to see how my family and friends enjoy the results of my efforts. But the truth is I really do it for the dough.

Let’s face it. It’s hard enough to keep your hands out of the cookie jar, but what’s really difficult is keeping your fingers out of the mixing bowl. In fact, the practice of eating raw cookie dough has become so popular that many people buy packaged cookie dough from the grocery store with absolutely no intention of ever baking it.

Fudge!

Jun 12, 2017
flickr user theilr (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/)

Of all the culinary accidents in human history, which include the chocolate chip cookie and, if you believe Charles Lamb's account, roast pork -- surely fudge must rank among the most serendipitous.

No one knows for sure just who made the first pan of fudge, but most everybody agrees it was invented by mistake -- and it's uniquely American.

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