Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Guilty Pleasure

Many of you know that my mom and I are both Realtors (r).  I was 11 or 12 when mom became licensed.  Back in those days, agents were taught to behave like call girls...the phone rings, someone wants you, you get up and get in the car.  The only (and pretty friggin' major) difference is that a call girl comes back with money.  Selling homes is a longer, more detailed and complicated process.   Here's a news flash...people who sell real estate are actually PEOPLE.  They have families, hobbies, other responsibilities...we're not on call because you know what?  Nobody dies in real estate, therefore, I do not need to be "on call."  Uh oh...I'm going down digression street, aren't I?

Anyway, there is a point to my rant.  Since my mom was trained back in the old days, she would answer the phone while helping us with homework, cooking dinner and even while eating dinner and she'd sometimes hang up, walk to the garage and drive away.  WTH?  Consequently, my dad, my sister and I had to learn to cook.  And you know what?  We did. And we'll all really good at it!  So, while it sounds like I'm bitching about how things were for real estate agents then (and I am) I'm also trying to illustrate that there was a silver lining to this cloud.

My dad immediately gravitated to high end dishes, which characterized his taste.  Up until that point, we'd never eaten veal.  But, my dad became quite the expert chef of veal piccata, veal oscar and wienerschnitzel.  Next, he "imitated" the Greek Island of Scorpios dish from Main Street's Epicurean.  By the time he was finished with it, it was so good that none of us ever ordered it again at the restaurant because Dad's was so much better.  And after a lifetime of hating fish, my dad got me to finally try fresh tuna that he had grilled and served with a light, fresh pesto cream.  All the while, Katherine and I were in the kitchen too.  We all developed our own styles and specialties and K and I actually began to make the family's weekly shopping list and would head off to Irmo's Winn Dixie with a blank check signed by the parentals.

This was my dinner tonight...crab cake, homegrown asparagus, sirloin & BEARNAISE!
Ok, enough history.  Dad's introduction of Veal Oscar began my love of Bearnaise sauce.  I love it so much that I think about ways I can incorporate it into stuff that you don't normally find.  I am trying to get my head around a bearnaise inspired soup.  I love it on steak, I love it on seafood, I love it when it runs over onto potatoes. I just love it.  That's all I can say.  It's definitely one of life's guilty simply can't make it without butter.  At the risk of sounding like (my least favorite Food Network star) Paula, butter is a powerful force.  In fact, if you meet someone who tells you they don't like butter, I'd say they're a big, fat liar.  If you've never had bearnaise sauce, do yourself a favor.  It elevates your dish to a decadent level.  This is one of the goodies we can thank the French for! 

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