27 November 2015

October/November Cook the Books/Food 'N Flix~The Hundred-Foot Journey


This month Food 'N Flix and Cook the Books combined forces to do one book/movie pick.  The one they picked, The Hundred Foot Journey, was such a great combination.  For me, the book and movie were vitally different, which makes for interesting conversation at your book club!

So first, thank you to Deb of Kahakai Kitchen for choosing The Hundred Foot Journey by Richard C. Morais.

Book review, from Amazon, as I tend to go into more detail than necessary:

Grandson of an entrepreneurial lunchbox deliveryman, Chef Hassan Haji tells of his rise to culinary success in Paris via Bombay, London, and a small town in the French Alps. With a fond, over-the-shoulder regard, he presents the lively family members, friends, and former foes who shaped him as a young chef, leading him to face his destiny and realize that cooking is not only in his heritage but also in his blood and bones. The novel floats along a bounty of vivid food imagery, a twisty-turny river of dishes Indian, French, and everything in between. With an obvious insider's knowledge of the restaurant milieu, journalist Morais delivers a world where Michelin stars determine not only the popular appeal of a restaurant but also the happiness of its executive chef. This novel, of mythic proportions yet told with truly heartfelt realism, is a stunning tribute to the devotion to family and food, in that order. Bound to please anyone who has ever been happily coaxed to eat beyond the point of fullness, overwhelmed by the magnetism of just one more bite. --Annie Bostrom

And movie review, from me:

In "The Hundred-Foot Journey," Hassan Kadam (Manish Dayal) is a culinary genius with "perfect taste."  The Kadam family, led by Papa (Om Puri), settles in the French village of Saint-Antonin-Noble-Va.  It is both picturesque and elegant - the ideal place to settle down and reopen the family Indian restaurant, the Maison Mumbai.  However, a famous, classic French restaurant is across the street, ran by Madame Mallory, a rather formidble woman who is entirely again the Indian restaurant opening so close.  She protests, Papa protests more loudly, until it is out and out war between the two. Hassan's passion for French haute cuisine combine with his mysteriously talent to combine the two cultures, that even Mme. Mallory cannot ignore. She eventually recognizes Hassan's gift as a chef and takes him under her wing. Under her tutlege, she helps Hassan and Hassan helps her with a goal she is trying to achieve.  

So all that being said, I chose to do a simple but classic French vegetable preparation, which is asparagus and bacon.  Inspired from this cookbook:  Around My French Table, my husband made bacon wrapped asparagus for our Thanksgiving dinner.

Yes, this is Beef Wellington!

This is a delicious and simple preparation:  trim asparagus, wrap in your favorite bacon, and finish in a 350 degree oven until bacon is crisp.  The asparagus retains a nice crunch and is seasoned with the salt in the bacon.  No added fat is needed.  If you want to impress, try this dish!

Overall, great book and movie, with different highlights, but the same wonderful story.  

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