Thursday, September 1, 2011

Garnish your way to happiness

The other day I had some friends over for lunch and had chopped up a handful of parsley to put on top of everybody's bowl of soup.  Which I did a lot more obtrusively than I had planned, since I forgot to do the garnish as I dished out the bowls, and so had to bring my little green bits to the table and strew them into the soup in full view of everybody.  Not the savoir faire one expects from a world class chef.

My friend Felice, while waiting for her parsley to be sprinkled, told a great story about a young friend who just happens to be a world class chef, or at least a guy who owns three restaurants, which is pretty accomplished in my book.  Some time ago he was chatting to her family about his life in the food biz, and announced, "Chicks dig guys that garnish."  That remark impressed the family so much that it became a mantra.

My son the cook might appreciate this concept, except that his wife and daughter are already sufficiently thrilled by the simple fact that he cooks, let alone garnishes.  And my unmarried son the non-cook, whose fridge hasn't held actual food since he bought the house seven years ago, wouldn't know a garnish from a radish so I won't even bother passing it along.

I'm not that hot on garnishes per se, at least not the kind you find in restaurants, which often strike me as gratuitous, if gorgeous.  For instance, you're not going to eat the leaf out of this magnificent bento box.

But I do love parsley, for its taste as much as for its greenness.  We're having a good crop of it this year, and it's such a pleasure to keep a bouquet on the kitchen counter ready for improving whatever I'm cooking.  In a bit of water, it will keep for days, thus sparing me a trek into chiggerland in the 100-degree heat.


  1. Actually, I think I bought this house eight years ago.

    Furthermore, I consider the unplanned plant life in my front yard to be a garnish.

  2. do chicks dig it?