Sunday night my father and sister and her family came over for dinner and I made Dusoulier's tuna mousse for an appetizer. My mother was famous for her tuna mousse, which was a silky, putty-colored melange of tuna, mayonnaise, and gelatin that you chilled in a mold and then presented on a platter surrounded by Club crackers. Very theatrical. She used a big copper fish mold and put pimento olives where the eyes would be and it was sort of kitschy but it was hard to make fun of the kitschy tuna mousse when your mouth was full of tuna mousse and Club crackers. That tuna mousse was delicious.
So is Dusoulier's, but in a totally different way. Hers is a puree of tuna, green apple, shallot, ricotta, cilantro and cayenne and it's fresher and brighter, earthier and easier (no need for a mold). It's a bit homely; it would be hard for even a professional to style that mousse. I'd definitely make it again, but I think I have to revisit my mother's recipe first.
For dessert, I baked Dusoulier's ricotta cake with apricots and pistachios. What a robust and beautiful dessert! Make it before apricots go out of season; the recipe is here. (If you don't have a 10-inch pan, 9-inch works fine.) Unfortunately, it was over cake that I shared with the guests my plans to build a cob oven in the backyard over the next few weeks. Certain members of the party let me know they found this very foolish and naive. Tempers briefly flared.
After cake/conflict, I tried to teach little children how to milk a goat.
To prove everyone wrong, Monday morning I signed up for this.
Monday night I made Dusoulier's spinach and chicken salad with peaches and toasted hazelnuts. It took about five minutes, which I loved. I also loved the salad and you can find the recipe here. (In case you don't know, which until recently I did not, this is the only way you should ever skin hazelnuts.)
I was going to make Dusoulier's curried turkey sandwiches last night, but for lunch Owen and I went to Cafe Colucci in Oakland on a nominally work-related excursion and gorged ourselves. It was a dinner-obliterating lunch. We consumed several pounds of kitfo, lentils, greens, Ethiopian cheese, and injera and then waddled off to see the Katy Perry movie, which was not even nominally work-related.
|a very lucky indentured servant|