About Food

Supplies of human food are infinite.

“The richest odor is that of young onions when they are just beginning to get golden-brown, you know, and when rascals fill the house with their sizzling. Another thing: when you come in, the table must be set, and when you sit down you tuck the napkin into your collar and you take your time about reaching for the vodka decanter. And mind you, you don’t pour it into an ordinary wine-glass, you don’t treat the sweetheart that way. No. You pour it into something antique, made of silver, a hairloom, or into a quaint pot-bellied little glass with an inscription on it, something like this: ‘As you clink, you may think, monks also thus do drink.’ And you don’t gulp it down, straight off, but first you sigh, you rub your hands together, you gaze nonchalantly at the ceiling, and only then, slowly, you raise it to your lips, and at once sparks from your stomach flash through your whole body.
And as soon as you have had your snifter, you turn to the appetizers.
The best appetizer is herring with onion and mustard sauce, and without waiting, my friend, while the sparks are still flying in the stomach, you help yourself to caviar, with lemon juice, if you prefer it that way, then you have a radish with salt, and another piece of herring. But I’ll tell you what’s better still, my friend: salted pink mushrooms, minced as fine as caviar and served with onion and olive oil… exquisite!
Another good appetizer is stewed white mushrooms.
Yes, yes, with onion, you know, and bay leaf and other spices. You lift the lid of the dish, and the steam rises, a smell of mushrooms… sometimes it really brings tears to my eyes! Well, sir, the meat pie is brought in from the kitchen and at once, without delay, another glass of vodka is in order.
Well, sir, before the meat pie you down another one, (…). The meat pie must make your mouth water, it must lie there before you, naked, shameless, a temptation! You wink at it, you cut off a sizable slice, and you let your fingers just play over it, this way, out of excess of feeling. You eat, the butter drips from it like tears, and the filling is fat, juicy, rich, with eggs, giblets, onions.
You eat only two slices, the third you keep for the shchi (cabbage soup), (…). And as soon as you’ve finished with the meat pie, have the shchi served, to keep the appetite at peach. The shchi must be piping hot. But even better than shchi, with all that cabbage, is a borshch (betroot-based soup), prepared with sugar beets, Ukrainian style, you know the way, my friend, with ham and country sausages. It should be served with sour cream, of course, and a sprinkling of fresh parsley and dill. Another excellent thing is a rassolnik, with tripe in it and giblets and young kidneys, and then if you want a soup, the best thing is a vegetable soup, with carrots, fresh asparagus, a bit of cauliflower and whatever else is legitimate.
After you have had your borshch or your soup, as you prefer, have the fish course served, and immediately, my friend. Of all the mute race, the finest is crucian carp, fried in sour cream. But so that I shouldn’t have any odor of silt, and to give it true delicacy, it must be kept alive in milk for twenty-four hours.
Pike, perch or carp with tomato and mushroom sauce isn’t to be sneezed at, either. But fish doesn’t really satisfy one, you’ll admit, Stepan Frantzych: there’s no substance to it. The main thing in a dinner isn’t the fish, no matter with what sauce, but the roast.
Say the roast is a snipe or two, and perhaps a partridge with it, or a brace of fat quail, (…). And what about roast turkey? The bird should be a hen, with fat, juicy, white meat – the breast of a nymph…
Good Lord! and what about duck? If you take a duckling, one that has had a taste of the ice during the first frost, and roast it, and be sure to put the potatoes, cut small, of course, in the dripping-pan too, so that they get browned to a turn and soaked with duck fat and…”
The Siren by Anton Chekhov

I am a cat and I prefer only raw food. So supplies of tasty cat food are limited compared to humans’. The world is not fair.



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