Monday, August 30, 2010

It's not always about fresh

Some dishes are not good right after they are cooked. They are not bad, just merely okay. They need time to settle into themselves. The spices come to consensus. A sauce needs to absorb. The ingredients intermingle in a slow growing crescendo, coming into harmony and balance until they sing out in a glorious chorus.

The pulled pork sandwich from South Houston was nothing to remark on when served but a day later transformed into sweet, succulent, flavorful, gorgeous porkness. You feel a loneliness having cleared your plate and a longing for more. More pork. (The shoestring onion rings on the other hand, do not hold up well overnight. They are light, delicious and charming skating on the tempura side of battered vegetable, a flirt of fried onions.)

So, too, was a recent meal at Szechuan Delight. The Twice Cooked Pork and the Eggplant in Peking Sauce were fine. But the next day and the day after that, each dish really came into its own. The Twice Cooked Pork having arranged the hierarchy of its flavors and the Eggplant surrendering itself to everything that Peking sauce could offer. So good. So good.

It's not always about fresh. Sometimes it's about the magic of time and the process of becoming.

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