This is an ode to my granny, who, despite the sound of her title (which, should be noted, she chose) was a real lover of the finer things of life and passed on some class to her granddaughters. She taught me a lot about those things, even as her life became increasingly eclectic she still insisted that the fork and knife (silver, of course) be placed just so for dinner and the napkin folded properly. The glass over the knife, blade facing in. All this fuss but it was not a big deal that her fat Great Dane sat on the loaf of focaccia bread that was sitting on the side table awaiting dinner.
Her food tastes were exotic too, especially considering being raised through the depression and being a mother and wife in the canned food age of the 60s and 70s. There was no ‘kids menu’ at granny’s house – if anyone was eating Coquille Saint Jacques, Jerusalem root or a fine steak then everybody was. This was so good for me, learning to eat and eventually appreciate foods I had never seen before. One food that has especially remained a treat and love of mine is the humble, awkward-looking artichoke. Simply steamed and pulled apart at dinner to be dipped in little wells of melted garlic butter, this is one of my comfort foods and one that was always especially dear to her as well.