Saturday, November 26, 2022

By Gini Rainey

I was out recently with some friends drinking adult beverages when the topic of books came up.  It just so happened that my publisher – and good friend – was sitting next to me, punched me in the arm and said, “Hey, I think you should read this series of books for some of your reviews!”  I told her I was open to it, but cautiously added “Are you okay with the kind of books I review?” To which she told me I read too many books about death and dying.  Point taken!

So, while I wait for that list, I wandered into my “library” and the only book that screamed “Write about me!!!” was this fun little cookbook I picked up last fall.  “Love At First Bite: The Complete Vampire Lover’s Cookbook” that was written by M+W Media, was just quirky enough for me to add to my ever-growing collection of cookbooks.  With the cautionary on the cover of “Contains More Than 300 Suckulent Recipes,” other than some scrump-deliousious recipes, its claim to fame in my book is the unique twists on the names of the recipes.  This collection of “fangtastic food and drink will take you on a nightmarish culinary adventure you won’t soon forget.”

With catchy section names like Bits and Bites, Suckulent Soups and Stews, Sinful Seafood, Petrified Poultry, “Organ”ick Foods, Bloodless Buffet, Nocturnal Nibbles, and Liquid Lunches, the table of contents is sure to suck you right into a cooking/feeding frenzy, and that’s not all!  The section titles even have subtitles.  Bits and Bites goes one step further with the description “Appetizers to Leave Them Screaming for More.”  Seductive Sandwiches tells it like it is with “A Handful of Horros,” and Murderous Meats flogs the idea of “Flesh and Bones to Sink Your Teeth Into.”  And if that isn’t enough, there are tidbits about the undead scattered through to keep you from turning off the lights at night.

Who doesn’t love a good potato soup?  Well, we have here Vlad’s Vichyssoise, along with the Tasty Tidbit “Vlad the Impaler was the fourteenth-century ruler of Wallachia who became infamous for impaling his enemies on poles and famous in
Romania as a national hero.  Vlad Dracula was the inspiration for the name of Bram Stoker’s title character in the novel Dracula.  But don’t let that information keep you from trying the recipe.  A great thing about vichyssoise?  If you don’t care for a chilled soup, well then just warm it up and it’s just as good.

If you’d like to cook easy and eat hearty, why not make some vichyssoise for dinner tonight?  Or perhaps just some good ol’ rib stickin’ potato soup?  Vlad’s recipe is very close to my own, will share it with you and also what I do differently.  Peel and dice three medium size potatoes and boil in 2 cups water along with a diced leek – white part only (or one medium size onion) until tender.  Puree’ the leek/onion, potatoes, and water mixture in a blender.  Now add 1 cup heavy cream and salt and pepper to taste.  Chill thoroughly before serving.  To serve, thin out with a bit more cream, if necessary and garnish with chopped chives.   My recipe for potato soup is served hot.  When the potatoes and onions are fork tender, add the cream, salt and pepper, and 4 slices of American cheese. Stir tilled blended and serve.  I like to make home-made biscuits to serve alongside, but crackers are just as yummy.

So, I just noticed that perhaps this book leans a little bit towards death, and that I also reviewed “The Dead Celebrity Cookbook: Christmas in Tinsel Town” a month ago, but hey Tena, 2 out 4?  That’s not too bad!

ben wheeler

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