02 March 2011

Panade Me?

How dare you turn up your nose at this dinner that I so lovingly created for our family?

Oh, I get it. You’re mad at me because when you asked for a snack today, I tossed some stale bread cubes at you and told you to go play in your room so I could concentrate on my iphone Words with Friends game.

Oblivious to your silent sobs, so wrapped up in figuring out how to get more points from a J, a Q, and 5 I’s, I barely noticed how you gathered up the scattered cubes in your chubby little hands and attempted to gnaw on them. I barely noticed how you walked over to the computer, typed in a search for ‘day old bread dinner’ and printed out a brilliant recipe by the Wednesday Chef. Not until I heard a little sniffle and was waving away the tear-stained printout that was blocking the view of my beloved electronic gadget did I hear you patiently saying, “Mom. Instead of ignoring your children and immersing yourself in a silly online game that you think increases your verbal intelligence but really is just a big timesuck, why don’t you turn these nasty hard bread cubes into something more palatable that the whole family can enjoy?”

Panade: Crusty bread cubes splendidly saturated with chicken stock and layered with chard, onions, and Gruyère.

OK none of the above is true. Because you are three years old and you don’t know what ‘palatable’ means. And while I do occasionally neglect you give you some alone time so that I can immerse myself in the glorious land of the Internet, it’s usually not for more than 3.5 minutes at one time. And I don’t feed you stale bread, UNLESS I have baked it myself AND it’s been soaking in homemade chicken stock AND layered with almost-caramelized onions, some sautéed chard, and a few handfuls of Gruyère. AND baked for 2+ hours in Le Creuset bakeware until it becomes a savory party in your mouth. It is called a panade. Just so you know. So stick your tongue back in your mouth, kiddo, and show me how delighted you are really are for this truly lovely dinner.

Thats’ better.

Readers, please see what Luisa, the Wednesday Chef, has to say about Zuni Cafe's chard and onion panade. She is more eloquent than I am, so I will not even attempt to describe the taste or the texture of this divine food. I'll leave it to her. So. Read her post, make the panade, and see for yourself!

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