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Appetites: A Cookbook

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Not so much seeing the author, drooling white sauce like a perverted Guy Fieri, next to his recipe for buttermilk biscuits and gravy sauce. They are the recipes that ‘work,’ meaning they've been developed over time and have been informed by repetition and long -- and often painful -- experience. I have been so intrigued by this recipe for long, so since it's my birthday weekend, I finally decided I had to make it (despite the BF's protests about having to eat spam). The recipes are what you would expect from his personal collection, a mix of high and lowbrow cuisine from near and far.

I like how in this version, the tuna mixture is mixed with anchovies, herbs and lemon, which makes it really nice and flavorful. Both the sausage and the redeye gravy in this book are a strictly meat and dairy/broth affair, no roux to be seen. about Brazilian martial arts, his now ex-wife's passion), and "Dessert" (one page, which begins, as I said: "F**k dessert. Once I had the chance to actually read through the recipes however and tried my hand at a couple I was hooked. Reading Bourdain's commentaries, you get the sense that “Appetites” reflects the man and his experiences.And for many years, first as a chef, later as a world-traveling chronicler of food and culture on his CNN series Parts Unknown, he has made a profession of understanding the appetites of others. Bourdain's biscuits have a slightly crunchier bottom, but are lighter and airier than the Cream Biscuits. The addition of the finely grated beet at the end of the cooking process is the key to getting that violent, almost bloody color in the bowl. Underneath its carefully curated punk aesthetic and ripped-from-the-(now ex-)family recipes, "Appetites" is also unintentionally a meditation on life and how it should be lived. My initial reaction was "not the best" but then as I puttered around I realized how many times I went back to the pan for more, and yes - these definitely grew on me.

APPETITES, in addition to presenting an eclectic, expletive-laden portrait of one's family's fare, is also a really great cookbook. The recipes vary quite a bit in terms of cuisine (totally expected) and difficulty and number of ingredients. I enjoyed reading some of his commentary on the recipes and on his food life and memories—but then suddenly there's his potty mouth coming into play, and I didn't enjoy his attitude about a lot of things—but, again, I don't think I'm the target audience here. Even though most of these recipes weren’t anything I would cook or eat, mostly being meat based, I still loved his snippets of backstories and cooking tips, and most of all, his humor.This was a really nice fresh salad and I liked the mix of tart apple, radish, carrots, butter lettuce with the yogurt chive dressing. It seems like a lot of spices in the marinade but the flavor is pretty subtle in the finished result. And moving the giant heavy grill pan laden with chicken from the stove to the oven is tricky business. I oven roasted the meatballs and then added them directly to a pot of Barefoot Contessa arrabbiata sauce to simmer for a while. We tear, rend, chop, eviscerate, mangle, and slice living, thinking, loving creatures, even the unborn, for our dark pleasures.

We both thoroughly enjoyed this, but next time I might add some extra milk or cream to thin the sauce out a bit. Also, super awkward seeing his (now ex) wife plastered everywhere, usually sweaty and in the middle of a jujitsu match.I found these crude displays off-putting enough that I couldn't make it through more than half the book. I ate a whole sleeve of crackers for dinner last night because I honestly didn't have the energy to microwave something dignified like pizza rolls but at least now I know how to make a sauce that will pair excellently with boar. According to the introduction to his eagerly-awaited new cookbook Appetites, he is also someone with a "psycho–Ina Garten–like need to feed the people around me," "obsessive-compulsive in my work habits and anally retentive in ways that you’d find ideal in a professional brunch cook, but probably disturbing in a husband or parent.

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