How to do Recipe Testing
First get on your sturdy hiking shoes and a good hat and a little blue backpack from Disney Word with Oswald the Lucky Rabbit on it. Set out early, but not too much before stores open. Head north. Don’t forget your earbuds. Prepare to spend about 4 hours listening to Trout Fishing in America, which will lull your brain into a state of hypnosis. This will help you focus on the recipe at hand, still as yet unimagined. Drop into a little party supply store that is almost always closed, and for no good reason buy a few 3-inch tinned brioche molds for $2.40 each. Keep going north. Stop in the famous San Francisco Boudin Bakery chain, which you haven’t been in for about a decade, when your son was taking guitar lessons and the other son wanted clam chowder in a sourdough bowl. Buy some sourdough and wonder, as always, how that the particular lactobacillus strain can survive the heat of Stockton. Keep walking north. Imagine stuffing the bread into the brioche molds. Pick up some vodka (best to plan ahead) and put it in Oswald. Buy some olive oil, the last drop of which you used last night. The backpack will begin to sag by now. Richard Brautigan will make you say Trout Fishing in America when the person at the cash register asks if this is credit or debit. When you finally get home, cut the sourdough into thin three-inch rounds with crust all around. Butter every surface, including the sides, your hands, and the top of your head. Suddenly remember that although you have no trout, there are chunks of salmon, well salted, strewn with dill and splashed with Linie Aquavit, which is better than any other because it has crossed the equator. Unlike the salmon, who only went upstream. But they didn’t have a ship, which is why they die after spawning. The people who bring Linie Aquavit across the equator, they do not die after spawning. Squish your buttered bread, but not your head, into the brioche molds and fill with a few nubbins of cured salmon. Nibble on the salmon, then remember that you put the vodka in the freezer and make a drink with lime, sugar and lime-flavored seltzer so you can bear out the 15 minutes you arbitrarily decide will be the time this recipe takes to bake. Preheat the toaster oven. Crack and egg, add a pinch of salt and pour into the molds. Whisk the brioche molds into the toaster oven and sip your cocktail. When the bell goes off, remove them, take a few pictures and pry them out of the molds and take a few more. Eat the whatchamacallits with your cocktail. Oh just call them Trout Fishing in America. Mayonaise.