I don't know her last name, but I know Janet is going to France one month from yesterday. I love the way she said that. She's a woman counting the moments until she's in Paris, shopping, cooking, breathing. I'm only slightly envious because I wouldn't begrudge anyone those glorious moments of expectation. And really how could I begrudge the person that told me about A Platter of Figs ?
David Tanis' book. Tanis is a man who does things like stuffs pasilla peppers with manchego or arzua-ulloa, she couldn't remember which, then fries them until they reach crispy, melty lushness.
The local library has a copy of Tanis' book but some like-me-in-this person has it for the next week and a half. For now, I'm using my momentary tour guide, Janet, to plan a version of my own, one I hope my nouveau vegetarian husband will enjoy. It will involve peppers I want to roast myself, for the ritual of it, and to try the method perfected by Tanis and described to me by Janet Onemonthfromyesterday, which I think makes a very good last name. I will stuffed my version of these peppers with smashed rosemary yukon gold potatoes, purple chunks of onions, strips of smoky grilled portobellas and wedges of manchengo, then serve them in a drowned allioli from Catalan Cuisine by Colman Andrews. Gifts come from the most curious places.