[Salt Fat Acid Heat] Part 1: Fat

IMDb Link.

I’m not too sure why Part 1 is Fat rather than Salt, as it was in the title and in the book. Be that as it may, what a fun episode.

Important point: I had read the book earlier this year and loved it. But that may be the infatuation of a first introduction to cookbooks; and reading more cookbooks may make it seem overblown and melodramatic. But I came to the series with familiarity and expectation, and it was met.

I had forgotten that in the book Samin Nosrat had mentioned that she had once stayed in Italy for a while to learn to cook. Anyway, here, she is speaking Italian like a boss; and generally being a boss all around the kitchens and butchers as well.

Notable points:

  • The scene with the Ligurian guy talking about how his olive oil was the best in Italy because of the combination of sea air and mountain soils made me giggle as I remembered Monkee‘s description of Italian local pride and its impact on hierarchy of wine menus: the pages starting with the owner’s family’s vineyard, moving on to village vineyard’s, moving on to Tuscan regional wines, then Italian wines; and if the restaurant is very cosmopolitan, a grudging inclusion of other Europeans wines.
  • And also of an Italian customer’s admission that he had always had Pecorino locally, and couldn’t tell the difference between Pecorino and Parmiggiano.
  • Samin Nosrat apologising to her grandma (presumably because of halal rules) as she chewed on uncooked pork fat was a delight to watch.
  • Shivani was sure as Samin Nosrat launched into a praise of the greatest fat in the world that we were going to see butter. We got red cow parmesan instead; and now I want to go back to the book, reread it for all mentions of parmesan, and see what I can do with it. And I also want to go to Italy with an empty suitcase and bring back a whole wheel of parm.
  • Hey, that made me remember that I want to do that empty suitcase thing also with a trip to Spain and a whole ham.
  • The anecdote in the beginning about Samin Nosrat’s friend who got a bottle of olive oil as a wedding present, and then used it little by little for thirty years without realising that it had gone rancid, cut a little too close. And reminds me of Nandu’s fable of the Crayolas (now deleted from Twitter).
  • Samin Nosrat has a very Sybil Ramkin vibe – big and kind – about her.

Do I want to get into this article about SFAH being Marxist (via Supriya) or not? I think I have something pertinent, but not necessarily useful, to say. And perhaps I should wait to finish the series before I say it.

Watch Date: 2018-10-27

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