Jay Johnson - This past Sunday was an 84-degree hot one in the idyllic river village of Frenchtown, NJ, but the scene was anything but tranquil. An electric buzz ripped through the main street as folks queued up for a limo ride to Two Buttons, the great Asian and world imports store that Eat Pray Love author Elizabeth Gilbert and her husband Jose Nunez own, along with a complex of other conscious businesses ranging from a Pilates studio to a whole-foods restaurant. But what about that limo ride?
Liz was autographing copies of her latest book, a cookbook reissued with contributions from Liz - the cookbook originally published by her great=-grandmother Margaret Yardley Potter called At Home on the Range. The book is fantastic. Whip-smartly written with a real gourmand's eye for the offbeat, the delicious, and the divine. Here's the video of her pre-Mother's Day appearance on Good Morning America.
Irwin bought an amazingly colorful Thai porkpie hat and I picked up two copies of the cookbook and stood in line to say hi to Liz, chat with Jose while we stood in line (busy serving red wine to everyone, always the perfect host), and then have Liz autograph one copy of her cookbook for my daughter Meredith and her partner Chriss and one for Irwin and me (to which we had her sign it: All My Love, Julia Roberts).
The cookbook proceeds will go to Scholar Match, an organization connecting donor with deserving under-served students to help them attend college - so buy several, give them out as gifts, and feel good about discovering unique recipes and helping deserving students. But back to the cookbook. I'm starting to read through the cookbook and just discovered a great corn-on-the-cob recipe (being an Iowa boy, I'm partial to corn) - Boiled Corn a La Delisle.
Try boiling the corn, de-silked with husk on, for 5 or 10 minutes in a milk-and-water mixture (half and half) for a delicious flavor treat, wrapped in a napkin. Liz's great-grandmother got the full recipe from a hidden-away inn in New Jersey's Atlantic Highlands, a favorite of Diamond Jim Brady and Lillian Russell. And this is just one of many, many recipes and stories from this chock-full cookbook. I'm planning a dinner party for 8 at the end of June, and I'll use At Home on the Range recipes, for certain.