Sometimes we need to take it upon ourselves to help people close to us realize what they like. Or need. Especially if they think they hate it. Jessica Seinfeld wrote a whole cookbook about inserting vegetables into children without their knowledge (I wish it was like that but alas, it’s not … sigh) and made scads of money. I’m not trying to make scads of money, I’m just trying to get my friend Natalie to enjoy herbs.
Natalie thinks that she hates herbs. She especially imagines that she has issues with dill and rosemary. She talks about it a lot. The thing about her assumption is that she’s assuming that she knows best about what she likes. I’m going to go ahead and call bullshit on this. The problem is that she’s assuming, and we all know what happens when one assumes: one apparently succeeds in making an a.s.s. out of everyone involved. That’s not very bueno at all. The reality of the situation is that I totally know what she likes more than she does (or so my ego would like to a.s.s.u.m.e.).
It’s kind of like when Brie (the other cee) and I went out with my ex for drinks about a decade ago. We were at Yee Olde Rustic Arsehole or whatever the eff it’s called in Silverlake or wherever the eff it is and the ex was being particularly drunk, boorish & obnoxious. During the portion of the evening when he took his fake front teeth out and decided to regale other bar patrons with suppositions about Brie’s sex life, she and I decided to take measures into our own hands. I ordered a Heineken and she and I excused ourselves to the little girls’ room. Once in the shitter, Brie produced a beautiful, blue, oval valium. I took a lipstick (pestle) and compact (mortar) out of my purse and crushed the valium up like a cinnamon stick. Brie held the frosty beer up while I poured the mickey in. Voila. Presto. Blammo. We then walked back over to the ex and his dipshit friends and presented him with the mickied beer. Here’s the deal: people don’t ever think that you’re about to slip them a mickey. Ever. Especially if they’re drunk. We decided it was okay because he is a degenerate drug addict and would have willingly taken the valium if it was offered. We decided that the mickey was a good option because if the valium was presented in a forthright manner to the ex, he would have taken it and then felt that he had license to act like a bigger idiot because he would be actively and cognitively “on drugs”. Our plan worked really well. He was happily counting sheep within 25 minutes. One of his burlier acquaintances assisted us in transferring him to my car, where he slumbered while Brie and I enjoyed another round or two in relative peace. Mission accomplished!
So why couldn’t this same deviance work on changing grown up people’s minds about certain flavors? Natalie LOVES my baked chicken. I make this shit about once a week, and she’s eaten it here numerous times throughout the years. Recently, I told her that there was a shit-ton of rosemary in it and she didn’t really believe me. See???? I slipped her a rosemary mickey and all it proceeded to do was help her feel full and content. Rosemary adds sooooo much flavor to the gamey flavor of poultry… the recipe would be crappy without it. It adds a bit of a clean flavor to oppose the sweetness of the apricot preserves. Tell the herbal nay-sayers in your life that it’s your “special baked chicken recipe” and grind the heck outta that rosemary. Not only does the grinding make it unrecognizable to the naked eye, but it also helps to bring out the oils in the rosemary.
Here’s how to make it (it’s super duper easy!):
1 chicken cut up (or whatever kind of chicken parts you dig on)
1 tablespoon of minced garlic (I like using the shit from the jar because I’m lazy and because there’s a ton of garlic juices in it)
½ tablespoon of thoroughly crushed up rosemary (fresh is better, but dried is cool too)
5 oz of apricot preserves
salt & pepper to taste
-preheat oven to 400 degrees
-slice the light green/whitish part of the leek into medallions
-mix all of the ingredients (except for the chicken & the leek) in a mug or small bowl
-put the chicken and leek medallions in a glass baking dish
-slop the apricot/garlic/rosemary/salt/pepper mix onto the chicken
-cover chicken with tin foil
-bake for 20 minutes
-remove foil & baste chicken with liquids on the bottom of the glass dish
-bake for an additional 20 minutes uncovered until the whole thing starts to get crispy and caramelized on top
-now serve it to the herb hater in your life and laugh silently inside