Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Reproduced without Permission

A few months ago I surfed my way into I honestly don't remember how I got there, but I'm glad I did. I signed up for the email newsletters and twice a week I'm treated to a unique, interesting look into the world of food.

Today's email is titled "Books - Game for Anything" and I'm reproducing it here, in it's entirety, without permission. Enjoy, then go to and sign up for their emails. Maybe they'll forgive me if I drive up their subscription base.

Game for Anything

Three days. 45 courses. A year in the making.

And fish, game, and entrails from all across America.

Those are the main ingredients in The Scavenger's Guide to Haute Cuisine, hunter/gatherer and uber-outdoorsman Steve Rinella's book about his yearlong attempt to honor Auguste Escoffier, his culinary idol, with a single, unforgettable feast.

The catch? Most of the ingredients in Escoffier's classic cookbook were unavailable in stores. So, with the help of his friends, Rinella set out to procure his own fish and game. He wrestled a stingray on a Florida beach, stalked bear in Alaska, and built a coop to raise pigeons (without much success). He hunted elk, antelope, mountain goats, and rabbits; trapped sparrows and snapping turtles; dug for clams; and found his way (we'll spare you the details) to carp semen.

On the menu? Wild boar head cheese, pig-ear sausage, wild goose foie gras, and baby squab poached in an antelope bladder. The crayfish mousse was a disappointment, and the liver soufflĂ©—though a beautiful golden balloon when removed from the oven—was a disaster once it collapsed. (One of Rinella's guests called it "nasty.")

Rinella's story is brisk and well-told, with plenty of interesting characters enlivening the mix. And, while some people (including Rinella's vegetarian girlfriend) weren't 100% behind his endeavor, we understand his frustration with the distance between most Americans and the sources of our food.

Fatten up for the thrill at


  1. cookbooks make great bedtime reading. they're so colorful and soothing. now if only i can move them to the kitchen!

  2. A great way to kick-start dreams about food! Not that I need any help dreaming about food!