All one topic, in spite of the tri-part title. I just got the Zuni Cafe Cookbook in the mail, courtesy of a nice member of paperbackswap.com. This has been on my wishlist for a while. The sender was very generous; the cheapest you can buy the book on Amazon is around $9.00, plus shipping.
I emailed the sender, thanking her for sending this beautiful book. She replied that she had gotten it at a yard sale for 50 cents! How thoughtful of her to get it for me!
The restaurant and the cookbook are acclaimed mostly for roast chicken on bread salad. Maybe I'll make that, maybe not. Most of the recipes are rather baroque--both the prose and the style of cooking. This is fun to read in small doses, but I'll leave it to my son to make some of the recipes. He is unfazed by picky and complex recipes.
There is one recipe I will try: the panade. As always, I gravitate to the most humble recipes. That this is made with day-old bread is a bonus, since I have ample homemade bread courtesy of Mr. FS.
The panade I am most likely to make consists of 6 cups of onions cooked waaayyyy down, layered with cooked chard (which I will have in my garden one of these days), dried bread, broth or water, and cheese. BAked for a while till it "oozes liquid."
Leftovers can be fried in an "amorphous patty." Then topped with a poached egg.
I have been dreaming of this all day, but, even in the interests of research and public service, this will have to wait a while. It's still in the 90s here and I am NOT turning on my oven. I'm hoping for an early fall.
Always in search of humble but good recipes, dear readers.