It’s hard to go wrong with a menu that’s designed for you.
I recently sat down with Chef Matt Kantor to design a dinner for 4 that I won in the LittleKitchen.ca contest. I was really excited – a meal designed for ME… er, and my guests – Gerry, Rockr & Junkii.
I know their tastes fairly well. Gerry and I have been together for 20 years and we share the cooking so no one’s tastes overrides the others (much). Rockr & Junkii are the dear friends I live with when I’m working in Ottawa, they are major contributors to CheapEats Ottawa, and we talk food and restaurants all the time.
But they weren’t the ones sitting across from CIA-trained Chef Matt Kantor when he said “I’m thinking of goat for your menu”.
“Goat! Right ON!” I blurt. I love goat.
“Or perhaps lamb…”
“Oh, we love lamb, though we prefer mutton. Any chance you’ve found a source for mutton in town?” I ask, before leaping into the Rosemary, my pet lamb, story.
I figure it is a good sign when a Chef smiles indulgently at me when I go off on a little Asterix rant at the mention of wild boar.
I don’t think I told him about our traditional Easter Bunny Pie when he mentioned rabbit as an option. But I might have. I was pretty excited about the whole thing, and he kept egging me on. Though I was starting to worry that he might think me a little bloodthirsty.
I did mention Junkii’s dislike of warm dessert. And Rockr’s intolerance for coffee and Gerry’s for chocolate. I told the story of Gerry ODing on legumes with his soy heavy diet. But I’m pretty sure I said “no parsnips!” 20 times.
Of course, now I want to see what he’d design if Gerry were driving. Or Rockr. Or Junkii. Hell… I’m fascinated by the process, the flavours, and how he made the choices that produced this meal!