When asked 'what fictional characters would you most like to dine with', I actually have an answer.
I'm terrible at making lists of favorites: people, songs, movies, whatever. But this one...I can do this.
If someone were to wave their magic wand or whatever magical item required, I'd want to sit down and enjoy a meal with Sherlock Holmes, Hercule Poirot, and Nero Wolfe.
Yes, I'm a mystery fan. I've read all three, still do. Their sleuthing techniques are a bit different from each other, and I'm sure the conversation would be both lively and intense, at intervals, as they discussed their methods.
But the real reason I'd invite these crime-solvers to dinner is the fact all three were interested in food.
It wasn't necessarily at the forefront, in the novels, but give them a read and you'll discover the attention to food detail.
Holmes and Watson try out a new vegetarian restaurant. Poirot goes to great length to set the perfect table for a special guest.
And Mr. Wolfe? Well, for him, it was always about the food.
Nero Wolfe and his long-suffering chef, Fritz Brenner, talked about food all the time. How many cardamom pods were acceptable in a dish. Whether or not to use juniper berries.
The meals Wolfe and Archie Goodwin ate were detailed in the stories, and some years back, the author, Rex Stout, offered fans of the detective series a real treat: The Nero Wolfe Cookbook.
The book is filled with the recipes mentioned throughout the Wolfe books. Main dishes, breakfast treats, sides...everything.
I've made four or five things from this book, and every one was a winner.
The most recent: Fritz's bread. To paraphrase Archie Goodwin, when Fritz dies, Wolfe will never eat bread again.
This bread is pretty darn good, I'll give him that.
Very solid, sandwich bread. It makes small loaves, but it works. Really good flavor. Dense.
This recipe requires three risings, but it was worth it. Not necessarily difficult, just set aside a few moments of your day for kneading and the like.
This also made the most excellent French toast.
Now, I very much doubt I'd give up eating bread if this were unavailable to me, but it's a pretty darn good loaf.
Blog Party#19 is under way, and this month, we're taking Comfort in our favorite feel-good foods. Turn your favorite comforting treats to appetizers by Thursday, 15 February (thehappysorceress at gmail dot com), and hope to see you there!
Tagged with: Food and Drink + Baking + Bread + Books + Cookbooks + Mysteries