"FREEBIRD!!!!"

Asia has given us many wonderful things: tentacle porn, ninjas, ninja stars, the song “Heat of the Moment,” and gravure models, among the best.  But to my mind, Asia’s greatest export is what I will affectionately and blanketly, in my cultural insensitivity, call “the noodle bowl.”  A huge bowl of broth, meat, toppings, and deliciously alkaline noodles is perhaps my favorite food of the moment.  This will change as soon as I see a picture of a cheeseburger, but right now, I am on a noodle kick.  I’m lucky enough to live in a place with a ton of Japanese, Chinese, Vietnamese, and Thai restaurants, most of which offer some form of a noodle bowl, as well as a side-order of hilariously-translated menu descriptions*.  Unfortunately, money spent on noodle bowls is money not available for sponsoring my African orphan, Douglas Asenbach TheChefsPrerogative.  As such, I have taken to making heaping bowls of noodles in my home, instead.  I’m still in the “Ah, fuck it – let’s just throw everything in there” stage of this recipe’s development, so feel free to experiment on your own and commit seppuku when it all goes wrong.

I'd watch yourself, kitty. That's all cute and funny, but in this economic climate, you're just an enticement to a cheap meal. See how I avoided the obvious and stereotypical "some Asians eat dogs and cats" joke? That's some good and responsible blog jokin', right there.

Wondrous Ingredients of Luck Terrific!

Noodles
Rice wine vinegar
Mirin
Ginger
Peanut oil
Shallot
Meat
Veggies
Whatever else you got

Making Most Happy Foods Wonderful!

Look, I’m no Asian chef, and, as stated, I’ve only recently begun making these things, so cut me some fucking slack if I’m not using nori or naruto or Hello Kitty, or whatever else makes noodle bowls authentic – feel free to put some of your manga on in the background while making this, if it will make you feel better.  In fact, I bought David Chang’s wonderful book, Momofuku, for the sole purpose of getting better at this whole “Asian cooking thing,” but, after careful study, I have come to the conclusion that that shit is fucking hard!  Seriously, it scares me and makes me want to cry.

Because of the inherent difficulty of making authentic J-cuisine, and the time constraints imposed on me by my almost impossible cosplay schedule, I opt for a simple, yet tasty, noodle bowl, which appeals to both my appetite and inherent affinity for randomly chucking shit in a pot, guided by nothing but a peculiar mix of impulse, intuition, and martinis.  That such a mix was also the impetus for landing me in a Oaxacan jail for the past four months bodes well for the final, inevitably perfect, presentation of this dish.

My cell-mate, Juan, taught me a lot about life, philosophy, and how to stab a guy to death using a shiv fashioned out of an old newspaper and spit.

I generally start out by sauteing finely diced shallots, onions, and assorted veggies in peanut oil.  I then add mirin and rice wine vinegar, because those are Asian.  This is followed by adding shitake mushrooms and a mixture of whatever stock or broth I have in my pantry, as well as soy sauce.  Seriously, whatever you got, throw it in – after all, this is generally where I get all “Dr. Frankenstein” on my ramen.  For whatever reason, I always feel it necessary to let the mixture reduce a lot, then add more stock, then reduce again.  Whenever my impeccable and almost Helios-like culinary intuition kicks in and informs me that the broth is now ready – that any more cooking would ruin it, but any less and it wouldn’t have been complete – I throw in tofu, bok choy, and whatever else I can think of, to finish it off like I was a Korean masseuse at a Japanese massage parlor.  Pour the broth over boiled noodles of your choosing, and top with pork shoulder you’ve conveniently roasted to perfection before-hand.  On the side, I like to have a bowl of julienned  radish and cucumber, some hot sesame oil, and a jar of seasoning I stole from my local Japanese restaurant.

As I’ve been writing this, and simultaneously perusing some ramen-oriented sites on the internet, I have come to the realization that I’m kind of massacring a centuries-old cuisine, and doing to it what Sandra Lee does to all manner of food and table-scapes.  But, listen: if you want a proper bowl of ramen (as well as all manner of other delicious Asian treats), go get you some Momofuku from Barnes & Noble, and follow its great recipe.  It’s a great book – if not exactly user friendly (seriously, I’m a big fan of ramen, but I don’t know if I want to cook a gallon-and-a-half of broth, dude) – and the author uses the word “fuck” a lot.  And, in defense of my horrific and ethnically insensitive “recipe,” this is how Chang describes what he deduced as the ramen recipe of a very popular Tokyo ramen house: (1) Soy sauce placed in bowl, then stock, (2) gigantic helping of noodles, (3) toppings are placed, (4) finished with a touch of stock.  So it seems ramen is not about some specific recipe, but rather about the simplicity and quality of its constituent parts; a quality which, like all seemingly simple things, takes millenia to perfect.  I’m not saying you and I should give up trying for the perfect, authentic noodle bowl, but I am saying that you’re a white guy who drives a Saab, so maybe just be happy with a reasonable facsimile you can make in your house, without a centuries-old recipe and the patience of Confucius.  If, however, you can find a place that serves good pork buns, just give up and go there, instead.

Did you seriously think you were getting out of here without a picture of a Gravure model? I may not know how to cook things of a Japanese nature, but I sure as hell know how to masturbate to them.

_____________
*An actual description from a small noodle joint I recently visited: Kink pork noodle soup to the last drop drink, became one of the ingredients, and balanced a “taste of Santoka” also say one cup.  The image of a sophisticated finish to taste both beautiful slender women.  Koume icon is decorated with chocolate in the middle of the bowl is topped with only noodles shiora.  I like the noodles and beautiful, slender women, but I’m a little disquieted by the thought of that chocolate in my ramen.

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In an effort to keep your voracious appetite for my culinary musings satisfied, I’ve decided to start a new feature on this blog, cleverly titled “Amuse Boosh!“.  It features mini-diatribes which will be published in-between my usual long-ass diatribes.  You’re very welcome.  That’ll be ten bucks.

For Puritans, the Pilgrims were sexy as hell.

Little known fact: although Puritan in religious belief, The Pilgrims were sexy as hell.

As cavalier as I am about so many things (crime scene clean-up, lying on my resume, being a royalist supporter of King Charles I during the English Civil War), there is one arena in life in which I am steadfastly fastidious.  When it comes to cleanliness while cooking poultry, I conduct my culinary processes like a epidemiologist at the WHO.  This is mostly due to my crippling and relentless fear of contracting salmonella, which, as we already know, makes your insides melt and your genitalia spontaneously combust.  In general, I view raw poultry like Dustin Hoffman viewed those African Ebola sufferers in the movie Outbreak.  I don’t know where this paralyzing fear of poultry comes from, but it probably has something to do with the fact that I was once attacked by a flock of birds, narrowly escaping just in time to save my girlfriend, Tippi Hedren.

It is with this trepidation and white-hot fear that I approach my Thanksgiving preparation.  This year’s turkey, “Betty,” is currently in the fridge, hopefully benefiting from a dry brine.  Forgetting, for a moment, the fact that brines are inherently wet, I’m hoping that the application of a nice miasma of kosher salt kick-starts the osmosis process, or whatever the fuck, and will eventually bring about a moist, tender bird, without a hint of gut-rending enterobacteria.

On a related note: what asshole decided turkey should be the traditional thanksgiving meal?  The pilgrims had fucking lobster, you know; we couldn’t have done that?  Societal norms couldn’t dictate a nice surf & turf?  Trust me, I’d be much happier giving thanks with a nice steak that took ten minutes to cook and didn’t dry out to the consistency of balsa wood.  Anyway, here’s to hoping Betty – and all our departed sacrificial turkeys – turn out juicy, delicious, and with a generous side of tons of scotch.

I'm going to sue the South for intentional infliction of deliciousness.  Then I'm going to subpoena all their fried chicken.

I'm going to sue the South for intentional infliction of deliciousness. Then I'm going to subpoena all their fried chicken. For me to eat.

If there’s one thing I have in common with the Oraon tribe of western Bengal, it’s that I love a good ol’ human sacrifice to mark the beginning of the Festival of Sarhul.  If there are two things I have in common with the Oraon, it’s a good ol’ human sacrifice, and the love of a post-ritual meal of fried chicken.  This is somewhat odd for me, though, because I typically try to avoid chicken in the meals I cook, and will almost always opt for duck or goose if I’m in the mood for fowl.  I was going to write the last part of that sentence as “…if I’m in a fowl mood” but, luckily for you, I’m feeling generous today.  In any event, the shining exception to this general poultry rule has always been fried chicken.  Indeed, fried chicken is one of my most favorite meals ever, and would almost certainly play at least a small role in any death-row meal I’d have to put together after they found all those hooker parts in my basement.  In fact, fried chicken satisfies several criteria which any great food must have: (1) deep fried; (2) involves eating with your hands; (3) is often served in a bucket; (4) can be just as good, if not better, the next day, straight from the fridge; (4) actually, that “bucket” requirement didn’t make much sense at all, back there – feel free to ignore that one; and (5)  after eating, one is able to look at the mangled carcass of his consumed chicken and pretend that the bones strewn about the table are actually those of a tiny, yet formidable, vanquished foe, dispatched on some ancient and hallowed battlefield, the name of which will no doubt echo through all of time, as will the legend of your valiant heroism.

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Oh, sure, he looks cute now. But just wait until the salmonella he's carrying around turns your guts into mush and makes your eyeballs melt.

Unfortunately, getting to this pinnacle of skin-, fat-, and oil-based deliciousness is a time-consuming endeavour, filled with perilous culinary balancing acts and the omnipresent threat of dastardly salmonella.  Salmonella, which sounds like the name of a hot Latina chick who would cut you if you forgot to pay her wireless bill like you promised to, is the world’s most insidious enterobacteria.  Let’s see what the Centers for Disease Control has to say about it:  Once infected, the skin of the unfortunate ingestor begins to crawl and itch, much like that of a junkie coming down from his high last weekend while trying to mellow out by watching golf.  Shortly thereafter, the person becomes gripped with stomach cramps, resulting in vomiting and doo-doo butt.  The worst is yet to come, though, and salmonella’s final salvo occurs when the victim’s organs begin to liquefy, his eyeballs fall out of his head, and his genitals spontaneously combust.  It’s a real motherfucker, in other words.  Yikes; sounds serious.  And, if you listen to anybody on TV discussing raw chicken, you’d think that any errant drop of poultry juice, any contact with the carcass, or even the slightest bit of under-cooking will subject one to the above-described horrors of the poultry-based menace.  I don’t know about all that, but I do know that I don’t want my junk to explode, nor my eyeballs to fall out, so I like to marinate my chicken in bleach before breaking it down, all in a portable Haz-Mat lab I got at a government auction.  While you don’t have to take the precautions I do, it is best to practice common sense when butchering a chicken and subsequently cooking the shit out of it.  I’m not going to re-hash stuff you’ve already no-doubt heard, but suffice it to say that cross-contamination, much like a Spike Lee movie about race relations, is a bad thing.  Use plastic cutting boards, throw away your imported chef’s knife after using, and always wash your hands in boiling water.  If all else fails, avoid contracting salmonella by committing seppuku after your meal, thereby avoiding a nasty case of mud-butt, while simultaneously honoring your family name.

Get:

Fryer Chicken
Buttermilk
Smoked paprika, salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, garlic powder
AP flour
Crisco, vegetable oil, or whatever
Frank’s Red Hot
Clover Honey

Do:

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"Are you not entertained?!?!" No.

Breaking down your own chicken is pretty easy, and makes you feel like a real, honest-to-goodness chef.  However, it’s pretty difficult to describe, in words, how to do this, so I’ll let Ming Tsai take over.  Once you’ve gone all Green River Killer on your chicken, place the pieces in a gallon-sized zip-top bag and pour in the buttermilk.  This is a dicey step, because at some point you’re going to think to yourself, “Hey, I like milk.  I also like butter.  Maybe I should drink some of this buttermilk.”  I want to caution you to avoid this temptation, but the only way to learn, unfortunately, is the hard way, just like I did.  Place the bag in a dish of some kind, and stash it in your fridge, overnight.

Alright, here’s the deal.  Making fried chicken is not easy.  You’ve got to get the temperature of the oil right, you’ve got to play a tight-rope act by cooking it through, but not so much that you burn the crust, and you’ve got to make sure you flour the meat precisely, or else all that delicious brown crust is going to fall off the chicken.  And that’s not even taking into account that even a successful frying will leave your kitchen covered in a thick miasma of grease.   If you want to cut your losses right here, I’ll completely understand.  Albertson’s has surprisingly great fried chicken, perhaps the best I’ve ever had, so feel free to take this opportunity to drive over there and get you an eight-piece and some potato wedges.  If, however, you feel the need to finish what you started, let’s get to cooking…

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Trying to maintain proper oil temperature makes trying to keep a bus at 50 mph seem like an acting job by Keanu Reeves, in comparison. By that, I'm implying that Keanu Reeves is simple. Simple like a fox.

Pour the contents of the bag into a colander to drain.  Season liberally with salt, pepper, smoked paprika, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper.  In a cast iron skillet (much like with making a proper roux, or hitting a cartoon character in the face with, cast iron is the only pan fit for the job), fill with enough shortening or vegetable oil to come about an inch up the side of the pan.  Bring the oil up to 360 degrees, and don’t be a smartass like me and simply wave an empty pan around in a circle and tell everyone you’ve done it.  Coat the chicken with the flour, shake off the excess, and place in the oil.  Here’s where shit gets tricky: you’ve got to somehow maintain the same heat throughout cooking, but I have no idea how to do this.  My oil generally jumps up to 385 for a minute or two after I’ve dropped in the chicken, then backs down to 320 or so.  I’ll crank the heat a little, and will be baffled at how the temperature continues to drop.  Thinking I’ve encountered some anomaly in the physical  and quantum makeup of my very own kitchen, I’ll call NASA, only to later discover that my deep fry thermometer accidentally got nudged out of the oil.  Cook until golden brown, then flip.  I forgot to mention this, but always have a splatter guard covering the pan.  This won’t keep anything clean, but at least feel like you’re doing something proactive.  Remove the chicken to a rack (no, not the sexy kind) and let sit for longer than you’d think.  I like to eat mine by applying honey and Frank’s Red Hot to every bite, then waiting a couple of hours to see if my insides start to melt.

I'm including this picture of Diora because writing about fried chicken reminded me of the Fuzzy Zoeller/Tiger Woods imbroglio at the '97 masters.  Diora, here, has a golf club in her hand.  See, it all makes sense.

I'm including this picture of Diora because writing about fried chicken reminded me of the Fuzzy Zoeller/Tiger Woods imbroglio at the '97 Masters. Diora, here, has a golf club in her hand. See, it all makes sense.

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This newly discovered photo of a WWII-era French lieutenant sheds light on how the Germans were able to circumvent the Maginot Line. As we now know, baguettes, though delicious, were woefully inadequate for use as telescopes.

I held off for as long as I could, but last weekend I felt it was my duty to finally undertake the daunting and fist-sized-hole-in-the-wall inducing tasks of baking bread, then reporting the arduous process to you.  I figured that I’d written about a lot of my favorite foods on this illustrious blog, but have neglected perhaps the most basic and delicious of them all, simply because it’s difficult to make.  Some may call this cowardly, others wise.  Others, still, might wonder what the fuck they’re doing on this blog in the first place.  Before I started baking, I did some research on-line and discovered that looking at naked girls making out with each other after a tough soccer practice while their coach watches for a while, but then decides to join in, is way easier than baking bread.  After that, though, I dedicated myself to the notion that I would bake some bread in the afternoon – right after this nap.  Then I did some research not consisting of videos of naked girls making out, and thought to myself “you know, I was under the impression that baking bread was going to be hard, but it turns out that I was mistaken!  It’s fucking impossible.”  Thus, my search for girls making out with one another after various sports activities resumed.  My unwavering and annoying sense of duty, however, commanded me to move forward and try my hand at making my first loaf of burned-on-the-outside, wet-on-the-inside bread.  If for no other reason than to piss off the ghost of Robert Atkins and the legions of his mongoloid followers who eat hamburgers wrapped in fucking lettuce.  Yeah, fuckface, because it’s the bun that’s going to get you fat, not the greasy red meat and two slices of cheddar.  Whore-bag.

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Let's see: yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, maaaaybe, yes, yes, yes.

Anyway, I did my research and steeled myself against the frustration to come.  I gathered my instrumentation, put on Kind of Blue  to help temper my temper, then commenced with staring at everything splayed out in front of me, wondering “How the fuck do people do this?!?!?”  Four scotches later, however, and with a cold Hoegaarden in my hand, all of a sudden baking bread seemed as easy as punching a toddler in the face and taking his candy, then throwing that candy in the trash just to show the toddler that you didn’t even need the candy in the first place, because “fuck him,” that’s why.  Waltzing around the kitchen with a swagger not seen since the previous day, when I punched a toddler in the face, I was ready to cook – I mean, bake  – my first loaf of bread, which I was sure would put Pierre Poilane to shame (the dead French bastard.)  But first I needed to figure out how the fuck the mixer worked.  I should have mentioned this, but in order to make bread you’re going to need a stand mixer.  If you don’t have one, just ask a lady over the age of forty if you can borrow hers – I don’t care if she’s a meth-addicted shoplifter and part-time prostitute, she’s going to have a fucking Kitchen Aid stand mixer.  They’re more ubiquitous than Beyonce.  But I digress… 

 

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Unless that pendant stifles your ability to speak and/or sing, you most certainly may not "upgrade" me, you omnipresent fame whore.

A quick note before we get started: much like new things and minorities not on prime-time TV, measurements scare me. And I’m not talking the good kind of measurements, either, like “Giada’s gotta have at least full D’s,” or “Why, thank you, Guinness – girls always told me it was big, but ‘biggest ?’  Well, that’s just great!”  So In order to assuage my crippling fear, and in an attempt to trick my brain into thinking measurements are fun, I’m going to rename all the units we’ll be using.  They are as follows:

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Compare: "Dude, I was so fucked up last night - I musta had 15 cups of punch at the Christmas party, and ended up discovering I'm a huge homo. AND a Steelers fan!" Or: "Dude I was so fucked up last night - I musta had 15 Lazer Falcons of punch at the Christmas party, and ended up having a three-way with my secretary and the boss's wife. She talked him into giving me a promotion!"

Things To Begrudgingly Buy At The Store:

1 Epiglottis of bread flour
1 Kerfuffle of instant yeast
2 Kerfuffles of kosher salt
2 Zooey Deshcanels of Water
2 Kerfuffles of honey
10 Englebert Humperdincks of bottled water
2 Thunder Cats of vegetable oil
2 Thunder Cats of corn meal
1/3 Lazer Falcon of tap water
1 Thunder Cat of cornstarch

I Never Thought I’d Write This On My Blog, But “Bake!”

Combine 5 Engelbert Humperdincks of flour, 1/4 kerfuffle of yeast, two kerfuffles of honey, and ten Engelbert Humperdincks of water (in a bowl, Einstein, not just willy-nilly on your counter.)  Cover as loosely as your mother’s reputation and stash in the fridge for 8 – 12 hours.  I’m sure that what we just made has a very proper and stupid baking name to it, but I got my degree in Registered Scientisting, not Fruity Bread Making, so I’m just going to call it “Steve.”  In your stand mixer, combine 11 Engelbert Humperdincks of flour, 3/4 Kerfuffle of yeast, and 2 kerfuffles of salt.  Throw Steve in there, too.  Knead with the hook attachment for 3 minutes, then cover the bowl and let rest for 20, because apparently our dough is a Teamster.  Kneed on medium for 5 to 10 minutes until it becomes sticky, but not too sticky to work with.  If you know what this feels like then you need to let me know, ’cause much like Al Pacino in Scent of a Woman, I’m IN THE DAAAAHK HEEEAH!!!  Let’s say, hypothetically, you get to the right consistency – place the dough ball in the center of a large pan greased with a Thunder Cat of vegetable oil.  On a lower rack of your oven, place a pan you’ve filled with 2 Zooey Deschanels of hot water.  Place the rack with your dough above it.  In about 1 to 2 hours, the dough will do it’s best “The Chef’s Prerogative stares at the new secretary’s legs” impression, and will double in size.

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Lt. Colonel Frank Slade sez: "How many tiiiiiimes...are we gonna hafta...REST THIS THIIIING?!?!?!?"

Grab your dough and turn it out onto a floured board like it was a mid-western girl straight off the bus after running away from home.  Fold the ball into itself twice (whatever the fuck that means), and let the dilatory fucker rest under a kitchen towel for 10 minutes.  Fold it several more times, then lightly pass the dough ball between your hands on the counter-top, forming it into a tight ball with a seam on the bottom.  Put the infuriating cocksucker on a pan, cover with a towel, and (surprise!) let rest for an hour.  Combine 3/4 of a Lazer Falcon of water and one Thunder Cat of cornstarch.  Uncover the laziest dough known to man, and slather your mixture on top of it.  Slash the top of the bread in the shape of a square and, it doesn’t say this, but I’m sure we have to let it rest under a towel some more.  Either way, that gives you just enough time to throw a pizza stone (or a slab of fine Italian marble – whichever you happen to have laying around) in your oven and pre-heat to 450 degrees (oh, and replenish your water pan, too, and keep it in there).  Bake for an hour, then let cool for 30 minutes before slicing.  You now have your very own loaf of homemade, fresh from the oven bread.  Now, you may be a little disappointed in the finished product, and discouraged at the Herculean effort it took to produce it.  And I’ll tell you right now that, admittedly, this is not the best bread in the world.  But then again, neither are you, so maybe lighten the fuck up.

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If it takes you longer than 24 hours to bake your bread, you have to pay it time-and-a-half.

 
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"Wut up, my Neezy?!? I luv u 2 much, yo! Holla back! LOLZ!!1!!"

Dear Puff Pastry,
     Oh, my sweet, flaky, buttery paramour; my luscious, savory lover; my delicious, rich suppliant – how I love you so.  I remember that first day we met, my dear, when I accidentally picked you up instead of store-bought pizza dough.  Initially disappointed, I quickly realized that you were so much better than the one-dimensional magmatic I had intended to buy.  So many possibilities to explore, so much food to wrap you around, so much scotch to drink while waiting for you to bake, so many hooker parts to bury.  Oh, how you opened up my mind to such culinary whimsy, my tasty inamorata!  Hot dogs would never be the same.  Nor would the sausage or kielbasa or pepperoni or red-hots or chorizo I swaddled in your velvet embrace.  But sausages and my penis were only the beginning, mi amore!  There were – and are – so many things left to put on top, into, and under your lipid-laden embrace.  I look forward to eating you in conjunction with many foods, my love, and as soon as I can perfect my deep-fried puff pastry-wrapped macaroni and cheese and bacon balls, I expect that you and I will enjoy nothing less than culinary immortality.

Love Always,

The Chef’s Prerogative

I love food that’s topped or wrapped in other food, and I’m pretty sure you do, too.  I mean, would anyone really eat onion soup if it wasn’t covered with a big crouton and a slab of cheese?  And, sure, a stuffed burrito is delicious; but have you ever tried to pick one up without its tortilla wrapper?  And, yes, Anne Hathaway is a beautiful woman, but don’t you think she’d look better with me draped all over her supple body?  Of course you don’t, you jealous bastards.

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If you go to your window, right now, chances are good that you can see my boner from where you are.

For example: I remember ordering a ham and cheese roll once, but rather than receiving a ham and cheese sandwich on a roll, as I was expecting, was given ham and cheese baked in a roll.  Naturally, it tasted just like any other ham and cheese I’d ever had, but I’ll be damned if I didn’t love it exponentially more than any I’d eaten before it.  Perhaps it’s my OCD nature that provides the basis of my inclination for loving nicely wrapped packages of food, all ready for orderly consumption.  Perhaps it’s some psychological quirk suffered because my parents put me to sleep in a burlap sack from the ages of 4 to 15.  Who knows?  Anyway, my favorite wrapped food is, without a doubt, beef wellington.  It’s no coincidence that beef wellington happens to be enveloped in my favorite wrapper of all – puff pastry.  It’s also no coincidence that eating beef wellington is like having sex with Monica Bellucci – in your mouth.

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What I like most about this photo isn't the well-thought-out contrast, nor the creative lighting, nor the photographer's use of aperture. Rather, it's the fact that you can see her nipples.

Ah, filet de boeuf Wellington!  Got a lot of time and money on your hands?  Sick of not being frustrated by things?  Have a hankering for wall punching?  Well, then, boy do I have the dish for you!  Don’t get me wrong, beef wellington is fucking delicious, but, let’s face it: it ain’t exactly “oh, I think I’ll make that for dinner, tonight” fare.  Instead, it’s more “fuck this motherfucking goddamn beef Wellington – let’s order pizza” fare.  Hopefully, my simple guide will provide you with ample information to perfect this somewhat anachronistic feast.  But if not, please don’t get mad at me.  Rather, just sit back, relax, and look at all that kooze up there!

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"Well, Nuke's scared 'cause his eyelids are jammed and his old man's here; we need to cook this beef twice, apparently; there's a duxelle and foie gras to contend with; not to mention the fact that an ingredient in our sauce is basically another sauce. We're dealing with a lot of shit."

Les Ingredients:

Beef tenderloin
Fucking pate de foie gras
Mushrooms (finely chopped)
Onion (finely chopped)
Thyme
Butter
Puff pastry
You’re not going to belive this, but: bone marrow
Wine
Peppercorns
Demi-glace
Eggs

Le Cook:

This dish is fucking obnoxious, and I love that about it.  Roast the beef until the internal temperature is about 120 degrees (in terms of temperature, not of geometric angle.)  In a pan, saute the mushrooms and onions in butter, and season with salt, pepper, and thyme.  I’m pretty sure this is a duxelle, but who the fuck knows.  Anyway, place the beef on top of the puff pastry that I forgot to tell you to roll out.  Take out that luscious pate de foie gras and resist the urge to go eat it in front of a bunch of homeless people – instead, and I’m not making this up, slather it on the beef.  See: obnoxious, right?  Top that with your duxelle and transfer to the middle of the rolled-out pastry.  I don’t care how you do it, just make sure that your beef wellington is totally covered with fungi and fatty duck liver.  Roll the sides of the pastry around the beef, and seal with egg wash.  Put the whole beautiful abomination – seam side down – on a baking sheet, then put that thing in the fridge for two hours to cool down and think about what it’s done.  I don’t know why this is necesary, but an old cookbook that smells like cigarettes and 1952 tells me that you should.  Break your boeuf out of its arctic prison, paint it with more egg wash, and bake it at 400 for 25 minutes, then at 350 for 5 more.

Your beef is now done.  But don’t get excited, homeboy, ’cause you’ve got bordelaise sauce to make.  Good fucking luck.  At this point, no one’s going to fault you if you quit while you’re ahead, but if you want to take a stab at the Full Beef Wellington Experience, you can do as follows…  Soften shallots in butter.  Add in some red wine and reduce.  Add thyme and peppercorns and reduce.  Add diced bone marrow.  Add demi-glace and reduce.  Okay, I just read how to make a demi-glace, and I can safely say: fuck that shit.  If you’re half as exhausted making this shit as I am writing about it, just go see if they have bordelaise at Whole Foods.  If not, that ubiquitous packaged brown gravy they make is pretty good – just get that.  In any event, at least you have a delicious tenderloin of beef, slathered in duxelle and fucking foie gras, for chissakes, to keep you company.  Pour a glass of wine and enjoy your liberty burrito, as we call it here in the good ole U.S. of A.  But, just in case you’re still pissed about the whole bordelaise thing, here’s Carla to help assuage your anger…

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Know how much sexier this picture could be? None. The answer is "none" sexier.