City Tavern: A Taste of History
I raise a glass to two hundred years
(or more), gather knives, measuring cups,
bowls, don apron, open "the book"...
did I mention "test" the wine?
Begin my journey of fashioning
Thomas Jefferson's sweet potato biscuits
with pecans, (trees we've touched at Monticello)
cinnamon, and ginger rolled -n- baked
served beside pumpkin gratin, fennel puree,
smashed red potatoes surrounding
roast turkey with Madeira gravy.
(A good Madeira's woefully underrated -
I increase one cup to two (wink, wink)
Turnips and parsnips "hide" in potatoes mashed,
(kids and husband will never know)
court chestnut stuffing upon antique china plates
and tummies gathered table side magically find room
for Martha Washington's chocolate mouse cake,
not to mention blueberry cobbler, raspberry tarts,
and pumpkin pie (perhaps a few hours later).
Everyone walks away happy, content, sleepy;
quilted tablecloth weary with a few more battle wounds,
(I forgot to mention cranberry relish)
husband clears while I make sure
wine doesn't go to waste...
and shelf the cookbook "stuffed" as well
with another year's blessings
of laughter, stories, celebration
snuggled within trusted, well-worn pages.
by Margaret Bednar, August 28, 2018
linked with "Imaginary Garden with Real Toads - Weekend Mini Challenge - Let's Eat" and "https://withrealtoads.blogspot.com/2018/08/the-tuesday-platform_28.htmlhttps://withrealtoads.blogspot.com/2018/08/the-tuesday-platform_28.html".
My husband and I ate at the City Tavern (historic Philadelphia, PA) almost 20 years ago and the meal, prepared by Chef Walter Staib (author of "City Tavern Cookbook") was absolutely amazing. We loved the setting, the history and Thomas Jefferson's biscuits! Martha Washington's cake was amazing... It is an experience we have never forgotten and I honor it with cooking many of our family's Thanksgiving meals with the recipes from this book. When I don't, we always feel like the day fell flat a bit... the food is that good. It takes a lot of work, but I never regret it. I have learned to make a few dishes a day or two before (keeping hands off the food is no easy task!) I remember the first time I prepared a huge meal from this book it took like 12 hours... I think we ate at 8:30 pm and no-one was in the best of moods (especially me) ha! (for the record, I was a young and rather inexperienced cook).
I have found a YouTube a clip showcasing a cooking series Chef Staib is in - currently 8 seasons on Amazon Prime. One can also go to the website HERE and buy videos.
The cookbook can also be purchased on the website above or just google it.