Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Always more to know

Just when I think I have it all as in Vegetable Love (see home page bkafka.com), I am sent scurrying back to my books for updates and omissions. The work is never done. That is one of the wonderful things about writing about food: there is always more to learn.

Arthur Schwartz, a wonderful food writer and friend, just told me he had had celtuce divinely cooked at a restaurant, Blue Hill at Stone Barns; 630 Bedford Road; Pocantico Hills; NY 10591; e mail blue hill farm.com. There Dan Barber, the chef, and the prodigious farmers combine to put wonderful Hudson Valley ingredients on the table.

Well, of course, it turns out that I had stupidly omitted celtuce from my book. It is a form of lettuce that grows a thick, about 1 1/2" thick and about 6" long, stem that is cooked as a vegetable. Technically, it is Latuca sativa var.asparaginaL. It originated in China. It is also called stem lettuce. The leaves can be used in the ordinary way as a salad.

Talking to Giuseppi Bruno of Sistina--see previous post--I learned that Ornithagalum--sometimes mis-called wild asparagus and located in my book under asparagus has a proper Italian name vetaglia. In the Veneto, it is called bruscandoli and is often used in risotto sometimes under the name bruscandoli Padovani.

There, I've gotten my derilictions off my chest. Put Post Its in my book.

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