The Unprejudiced Palate: Classic Thoughts on Food and the Good Life (Modern Library Food)
Angelo M. Pellegrini
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
First issued in 1948, when soulless minute steaks and quick casseroles were becoming the norm, The Unprejudiced Palate inspired a seismic culinary shift in how America eats. Written by a food-loving immigrant from Tuscany, this memoir-cum-cookbook articulates the Italian American vision of the good life: a backyard garden, a well-cooked meal shared with family and friends, and a passion for ingredients and cooking that nourish the body and the soul.
garden. Every day during the season, each brought bags of tomatoes and ate them as one eats apples. For dessert they would eat in common several pounds of peas or Windsor beans. And always, of course, quantities of radishes, green onions, and peppers so hot that they would blister the lips of any ordinary mortal. Leonardo is as fine a man as I have ever known. His faults are as the unpolished surface of a precious stone. He is in no way unique among his kind except in this: that his lithe,
good life. Here I shall discuss mainly such factors as are necessary in making a garden thoroughly practical and enjoyable. Even on a small scale, cultivating the ground and planning the garden require considerable skill. Assuming, and I think safely, that most of us can devote only a small space to the vegetable garden, my friend Leonardo would give the following advice: Since you cannot grow everything you need, concentrate on what is least available at the market. Plan your garden so that the
muscat grapes. When the grapes are gathered, the ripest and most perfect clusters are set aside in special baskets. Each one is inspected with care, and any defective grape berry is removed. They are then brought home, where each cluster is hung on special racks in an attic room, there to ripen further and partially to dehydrate. Each day they are examined closely that all berries which show the slightest trace of mold may be removed. When the grapes are all a golden yellow and partially dry,
thirty-five and after the birth of his third of six children, in the service of M. Charbonnier of Marseilles, France. It was an employment that he had secured through his shrewd and resourceful wife and eminently suited to his temperament, his talents, and his flair for distinguished cuisine. M. Charbonnier had extensive vineyards in Algiers. My father was employed as general supervisor of the vineyard and wine making. His duties entailed frequent visits to his employer’s home in Marseilles.
came usually in the spring or fall. We had, on those occasions, what seemed to me strangely simple fare for such distinguished guests. Always we began the meal with a fine broth, usually with fresh escarole cooked in it a few minutes before serving, followed by boiled beef and quantities of cooked turnip greens and dandelion salad. Wine, cheese, and an immense amount of homemade bread rounded out the meal. Now I understand. Those men were true gourmets; they came to the country for what they had