Thursday, March 08, 2007

The Other Side

I shifted sensually beneath the sheets this morning, my entire body still a-tingle from some distant, hazy memory of the night before. Something new, something... illicit? Something soundly satisfying.
I yawned, and a delicious scent of previously unknown spices emanated from my mouth, filling the air.
With sticky fingers, I rubbed the sleep from my eyes and tried to recall what had been so dark, so urgent, so daring just a few hours earlier.
Rolling over lazily in the bed, I stretched out my legs and draped my arm across Cate Blanchett's pale, luminous skin. She murmured a contented sigh, and I...
I...
Oh, what have I done?
Yes, I have crossed over.
There had been moments previously. A sly look. An innocent nibble. The furtive caress. The occasional salty lick, when nobody was looking.
But last night I went deep. True. Real.
I ate offal.
Without guilt, without disgust.
Openly, lusciously, I ate offal.
Wait. There was a male involved, a rooster, and I ate its cockscomb. Yes, I put a bird's secondary sexual characteristic in my mouth and chewed. It was good. It was gooey.
Well, basically it was a risotto of sorts made from that cockscomb and several duck tongues, probably both male and female. What a night!
Can you believe it? I did it willingly, and for someone who has had digestive issues for the past few days, it was a little bit of a challenge.
But I was not going to forego this challenge. I cowboyed up.
And you know what?
I'm doing it again.

33 comments:

Katie said...

I used to think I was daring...I bow at your feet!

cookiecrumb said...

The restaurant was Incanto, in San Francisco's Noe Valley. It's my old neighborhood from years past, and the place used to be occupied by a German restaurant, but now it's an altar to alternative.
Very nice.
My dinner mates were Sam, Fred, Cranky and Monkey Gland.
Much more offal was et than just mine.

Stacie said...

you dirty girl!
p.s. Cate Blanchett...rrrrawr!

Sam said...

You're doing it again? Again includes me doesn't it?

cookiecrumb said...

Sam: Of course, that's understood. If you'll let me lick your crown.

kudzu said...

If offal elicits such a rush of hormone-driven fantasies, perhaps I would actually try some -- but no, don't think so. The photo shows how blantantly real the servings are and I'm (forgive me) chicken.

Cyndi said...

Sometimes you're just too weird for me. Cate? Oh, you thought I was talking about the food? Nah, though it was quite brave of you. cr

Moonbear said...

Get outta here.

cookiecrumb said...

Stacie: Yeah. Rrrawr! Let's not talk about Tilda Swinton. Or Liv Tyler. Sigh...

Kudzu: You have to know the restaurant includes one complete cockscomb in the plate so we brave diners can gloat. I might have preferred to have it delivered chopped up. But. It was really tasty. In a flavor way, as well as texture. (Good pun, BTW.)

Cyndi: Well, you're at least partly open-minded! :D

Moonbear: You'll never know.

Dagny said...

I will remember this the next time the kids yell at me, "You eat really weird food." My mom? She would probably be down with the offal. But me? Give me a few years. It only took me about 20 years to try escargot. And I don't care what my mom says. Chicken feet? Brains? Sweetbread? Chitterlings? Just all seems wrong to me. Of course I used to say that about escargot too.

And so jealous that you had yet another outing with Sam and Monkey Gland. They so rock.

Sam said...

you have to eat offal to hang with the cool kids ;)

To all the offal naysayers. I was once such an offal namby pamby. Just ask my mum - I was an entire food namby pamby. But really if you open up your mind and your mouth it isn't so bad. Except I don't really like tripe, I confess, but at least I tried it so I know for sure. Y'all should do the same.

B A R T said...

Cookie, Cookie lend me your comb.

I'm completely with you on the Cate Blanchett thing.

Ilva said...

Marco LOVES them, he easily eats a pound of them in one sitting!

shuna fish lydon said...

mmmmmmmmmmm dee LISH ous!!
(and I'm a little jealous.)

s'kat said...

I can't imagine what it would taste like... rubbery? Icky?

Does. Not. Compute.

Kevin said...

CC,
You are utterly shameless.

Liz said...

Wow. We didn't even eat the cockscombs from our roos. But now I'm wondering where to get my hands on some duck tongues. Somehow I doubt our ducks are willing to donate. ;)

cookiecrumb said...

Dagny: I don't do snails. Like slimy garden hose, say I. OTOH, I have eaten jellyfish tentacles. That was neat.

Sam: I didn't try sushi until my dad was stationed in Japan in the Navy (I was about 20), and I was overwhelmed the first time... But it grows on you, huh? BTW, I happened to love sashimi as a child, but on top of that sushi: strange new things (octopus, etc.).

b a r t: Whoa, excellent wordplay! It must run in the family. ;-)

Ilva: That's amazing. I'm not ready for a pound of them, but for some reason I'm feeling hungry as I write this.

Shuna: What, are you jealous of my dream? xx

s'kat: They look rubbery in the pic, but they were quite tender and very collagen-y. Not soft like tripe, but more texture like... sashimi?

Kevin: I KNOW!

Liz: Leave your duckies alone! But, FYI, the tongues have a taste and texture quite like liver.

Lannae said...

Oh CC, Good for you! I think that when it comes to Survivor Icky Food Challenges, you are my best bet!

Sam said...

you couldn't even get sushi in London til I was way past 20.
In fact - my first sushi ever was in LA when I was 28?

kudzu said...

Re-thinking your food and my comment. I have bravely eaten everything served to me during a three-week stay in Japan (and was sorely tested by an American ex-pat and wouldn't give in). I eat Chinese strangnesses like fish maw and sea cucumber, etc., but they are usually highly seasoned and don't look quite so --justkilled. Don't know why duck tongue should bother me more than the beef tongue in a deli, but it does.

Dagny said...

LOVE sushi but since I'm not a huge fan of rice (Proof to my Southern relatives that there was a mix-up at the hospital.) I now lean towards sashimi.

Oh, and your reason for no escargot? That was mine too. But then I tasted them and they were fab.

As for all the other stuff, if you don't tell me what it is beforehand, I'll probably eat it. For me it's the knowing and picturing.

I may have to suck it up though. I was out for drinks last night with another blogger. He thinks that we should apply to The Amazing Race. My specialty would be to eat the "icky" foods.

Squishy said...

Aint doing it, won't go there, na!

Sorry just would not be able to bring myself to put it into my mouth. Interesting post though. Well done!

sher said...

Well, that certainly got my passions aroused! I wasn't expecting the word "offal." :):)

Anna Haight said...

Hats off for your adventuresomeness! I have a recipe for jellyfish way back in time on my site. Quite good.

A friend of mine told me of her adventures with a French family near Grenoble she stayed with. She can't eat them again after 'catching' some in the garden with the family, putting a dab of garlic butter on them and shoving their live heads down in the shell, then watching the critters BBQ's live. Everyone else ate them with gusto, but she only ate enough to be polite and vowed for them never to cross her lips again.

cranky said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
cookiecrumb said...

Lannae: I don't want to eat anything *really* icky, like bugs. Well, maybe. :D

Sam: I didn't try raw oysters on the half shell until I was 32.

Kudzu: Well, how about pig tongue? We ate some of that, too.

Dagny: Did you see the blogger who harvested and purged -- and cooked and ate -- wild snails?

Squishy: Totally understood. You are safe here.

Sher: Too bad there's not a less-awful word for offal.

Anna: You've done everything! Thanks for the heads-up, I will definitely go find your jellyfish post. Also, see my reply to Dagny.

Lannae said...

Ok, so I thought about you and your adventure in eating duck toungue all last night while I ate a duck leg and and a duck thigh. I picked up a Chinese style roasted duck, and the head was still attached. As I was chopping the head off with my cleaver, I was trying to muster the courage to open it's mouth and take a look at the toungue. Alas, like Marie Antoinette, the head rolled into the basket.

Dagny said...

Missed seeing that. I have heard that the basic California garden snail is the right type. You just have to regulate their diet. (By the way, students always find it a bit disgusting when I share that tidbit.) It sounds kind of tempting. And thanks to having taught third grade science in the past, I have absolutely no problem with handling snails. Removed one from my classroom this week while all the kids screamed.

cookiecrumb said...

Lannae: You had a cooked duck tongue in a bird head, and you didn't even look? Heh. Actually, having cooked inside its mouth, it might have glommed onto everything and been scary, so -- roll into the basket, Marie Antoinette.

Dagny: So I've heard, we "grow" the proper species in our local yards. Hmmm. Well, maybe some day. (No, really!... er...)

Anita said...

Don't knock the bugs, Cookie. I ate ant larvae in Mexico City with Steve from Rancho Gordo, and I have to say -- even to my norteƱa palate -- they were muy sabroso. I was fighting tummy trouble, and I still didn't find them gross. Peer pressure will do a lot for your appetite. :D

cookiecrumb said...

Anita. What were you doing in Mexico City with Steve Sando? Jeez, bury the lede!

Monkey Gland said...

It was all about the lamb's neck, it really was...
x