Ah Valentine’s Day, possibly the most unromantic day of the year, a notion I wrote about on lovefood.com. But if you’re looking for romance (with the stress placed on the second syllable) than look no further than Babs’ The Romance of Food’. I’m not the first to blog about this tome of love, or be stunned by it’s recipes, and gobsmacked by Babs’ descriptions, bon mots, and tales.
Ready for a surprise?
However, for me, one recipe stands out like a society debutant at the first ball of the London season, and that is ‘chicken with orange surprise’. I’m not quite sure what the ‘surprise’ is, as I don’t think you could get much more orange on that plate. Perhaps it’s ‘wow, this orange tastes of chicken!’
And you’ve got to love a recipe that includes bleach as an ingredient: to prepare wishbones, scrap all the meat from them then soak and wash in a mild bleach solution. Following this we get a potted history of oranges, and Barbara’s daily vitamin intake.
In my heart of hearts though (and it is the day of love) I love books like this. Did Barbara ever set out to make the most kitsch cookery book on the planet? Probably not, but she did. I wonder which of today’s rather soft-focus anodyne tomes will provoke a reaction in 20 years.