Eat Your Sausage & Make Love To Your Wife

“Luther’s faith was simple enough to trust that after a conscientious day’s labor, a Christian father could come home and eat his sausage, drink his beer, play his flute, sing with his children, and make love to his wife — all to the glory of God!”

William Lazareth, Luther on the Christian Home: An Application of the Social Ethics of the Reformation

hat tip This Guy.

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James Bond’s Favorite Eggs

I hung out yesterday with a friend who is very enthusiastic about chickens. He has many chickens at his home, and as he sat in the garden drinking beer with me, I could tell from the way he watched my four chickens that he loved them.

He is trying to raise a bunch of Marans chickens, a French breed which it is illegal to bring into the U.S. He bought twenty chicks in Georgia, which, disappointingly, is quite legal. I guess once the chickens are here there’s no problem. This disappointed me greatly because I’d thought for a moment that I knew a chicken smuggler.

Anyway, Marans lay a dark chocolate-colored egg which is said to be super-duper delicious. My friend told me that his experience was “Yeah, yeah, I’m sure they’re good, but an egg’s an egg…wait…these are amazingly delicious!” This from someone who’s very used to the eggs of free range chickens; the Marans eggs were that outstanding. I’m really looking forward to trying some when his chickens are grown.

This friend also mentioned that Marans are James Bond’s favorite eggs. Ian Fleming loved egg dishes, and he gave James Bond a voracious appetite for eggs, particularly scrambled eggs. Here is a recipe for the Bond eggs, which has much molten butter whisked in, and was included in Ian Fleming’s short story Thrilling Cities.

From wikipedia:

When in England and not on a mission, Bond dines as simply as Fleming did on dishes such as grilled sole, oeufs en cocotte and cold roast beef with potato salad. When on a mission, however, Bond eats more extravagantly. This was partly because in 1953, when Casino Royale was published, many items of food were still rationed, and Bond was “the ideal antidote to Britain’s postwar austerity, rationing and the looming premonition of lost power”. This extravagance was more noteworthy with his contemporary readers for Bond eating exotic, local foods when abroad, at a time when most of his readership did not travel abroad.

On 1 April 1958 Fleming wrote to The Manchester Guardian in defence of his work, referring to that paper’s review of Dr. No. Whilst referring to Bond’s food and wine consumption as “gimmickery”, Fleming bemoaned that “it has become an unfortunate trade-mark. I myself abhor Wine-and-Foodmanship. My own favourite food is scrambled eggs.” Fleming was so keen on scrambled eggs that he used his short story, “007 in New York” to provide his favourite recipe for the dish: in the story, this came from the housekeeper of his friend Ivar Bryce, May, who gave her name to Bond’s own housekeeper.

Scrambled eggs are, by the way, delicious for dinner. In this iconic Ron Swanson clip (the “Turf n’ Turf), the right to consume a t-bone, a porterhouse, a whiskey, and a cigar at the same time is heralded as quintessentially American. It might be. It is certainly quintessentially testosteroney. But what remains unmentioned by Swanson is the generous serving of scrambled eggs next to the steaks. Fleming and Bond would have been proud.

Review of Greenville’s The Owl Restaurant

A word that I have not used in a good long while is “twee”. Twee bird. To-whit-to-woo-to-whee!

I stopped by The Owl restaurant on Wade Hampton in Greenville a few days ago, and it was enjoyable, if a bit precious. I went by myself, swinging by on a whim. Afterwards, when I described my experience to the wife, we agreed that we’d have to stop by together to see if the place can deliver on some of its great promise.

The restaurant opened recently, and as a place was not yet very comfortable. I popped in just after they opened that day, intending only to have a couple of beers. This put the place at a disadvantage, which I readily acknowledge. The scene at The Owl could very well be swinging at dinner time, but the lack of people there when I was in emphasized the spartan decor and overly precise layout. The space also felt half-finished, although to be fair Grumpy Kitty says that the location was an absolute sleazy wreck before The Owl took over. The building was clearly still a work in progress. The deck out back had holes in it, but one of the owners mentioned her plans to repair it, and when she does, it will be a sweet little hangout.

The best aspect of the layout is the Waffle House kitchen setup. By that I mean that you can see the kitchen. I love that. And not just see it through a glass darkly, the way you can through some big diner window. I mean face to face, Waffle House style. You see everything, en plein air, freeballing. Kudos to The Owl for doing that. Between the freeballing kitchen and the plenitude of windows, there’s a lot of potential for the ambiance.

I took a seat at the bar, which was a little primitive (a good thing) and featured space-age collapsing hydraulic bar stools (a bad thing). My 300 pounds surely pushed through the weight limit for the stools, but I feel like any man of substance would have dropped uncomfortably low in those things. There were no taps, but the beer and liquor selection was excellent.

I didn’t order any liquor or cocktails, but I could see that they fresh-squeeze their juice for individual drinks. They also had several fun and funky selections besides the tried-and-true standbys. Not least amongst those selections is stuff from Dark Corner Distillery, “South Carolina’s first legal moonshine distillery”.

There are a few little things they do that I thought very cool. The food menu had seven items, plus a chef’s special. Water is served in big shareable glass bottles. The bill is paid instantaneously on the waiter’s iPad (yes, I’m easily impressed here in the Upstate of South Kackalacky). So there’s little paper, no plastic.

I enjoyed three beers and chatted up the bartender and one of the owners (the wife in a husband-wife team). I had planned on having only beers, but the menu interested me, so I ordered a root salad appetizer sort of thing that was up on the special board.

I was very disappointed.

The salad consisted of two baby carrots, a quarter of a turnip, and half a (very) small beet. It was dressed very lightly, as I had requested, and sprinkled with goat cheese and “soil”, which I believe was ground brown bread (pumpernickel?) and seeds. It was very prettily arranged, and my photo does no justice to it, as I’d already begun to eat, and I have a terrible phone.I know saying “very disappointed” in a review is harsh, but I can’t get around it. The salad straight up offended me. It was tasty, don’t get me wrong. And I have no complaints about getting my money’s worth. I payed $5.50 for a snack, which is about right. My problem was that the salad was so miniscule, it ought not to have even existed. Two baby carrots, a quarter of a turnip, and half a (very) small beet. I would have gladly payed double for double the food.

I had been eagerly awaiting the locally sourced salad, so my disappointment was magnified when the it arrived, delicious but offensively tiny. It was like being at a Subway where the girl thinks I ordered a salad because I’m on a diet when really I just like salad, but times one hundred.

One of the strengths of much of the locally sourced, slow food, organic, etcetera etcetera movement is the combination of sophistication with heartiness. I am strongly biased toward heartiness, as all who know me know. Alas that my experience was not hearty. Perhaps if I ordered a full-on dinner it would be.

Undeniably, though, both atmosphere and food have promise, and I’m interested to see where it goes.

And perhaps I’ll come at dinner time, which would be more fair.