The Romeo-and-Juliets of Flavor

Gentle Reader, While I’m closeted writing a novel I hope you’ll enjoy reading, it’s been suggested I post pieces from earlier years…years when I was freshly widowed, living in or near L.A. with my dog, waiting for Bill to appear. Do please bear with me!

A View from 15 years ago: Monday, July 20, 2009:

In another lifetime, I wrote an article about Serbian cuisine, and one of my discoveries was kaymak with ajvar. Kaymak (says Wiki) “is a creamy dairy product, similar to clotted cream.” At my Serbian editor’s suggestion, I suggested using cream cheese. Ajvar — if you haven’t discovered it at Trader Joe’s or another international grocery — is a heavenly relish of sweet red peppers and eggplant.

As I spread cream cheese on my odd sourdough whole wheat bread, then spooned ajvar over the top, I thought about other classic combinations … in which one element not only enhances the other, but the sum of the parts emerges as greater than the whole — true of the best marriages. It’s a jolly list … won’t you add to it? For starters:
Chocolate and orange…chocolate and lemon is almost even better.
Chocolate and raspberry (raspberry jam as a little kick buried in chocolate pastries).
Chocolate and cherries.
Chocolate and mint.
Chocolate and anything.
Apples and cinnamon … cardamom … nutmeg.
Apples and cheese.
Muskmelon and ginger.
Rhubarb and strawberries.
Peaches and cream.
Tomatoes and sweet basil … oregano … rosemary.
Carrots and thyme.
Black beans and cilantro.
Onions and dill.
Cucumbers and dill.
Potatoes and dill.
Salmon and dill.
Any fish and lemon.
Any fish and tartar sauce.
Lamb and rosemary.
Liver and onions …. bacon.
Ham and cheese.
Macaroni and cheese.
Hard-cooked eggs and mayonnaise.
Popcorn and butter.
Bread and butter.
Anything and butter.
Anything … well almost …and garlic.
To be continued….

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