Andrew (11): The cod is really good.
Nicholas (8): I’m really familiar with cod.
Maureen: How is that then? Please explain.
Nicholas: Cod is always the fish I pick when I have fish and chips.
Maureen: That explains the overfishing problem, then. What do you think, Tim? This is your Father’s Day special.
Tim: I’m really excited about having lentils. We never have lentils.
Maureen: Do you like them?
Tim: How could you not? They’re delicious.
Nicholas: If you had the cod, the green beans [side dish, not reviewed], and the mash [side dish, not reviewed], but no lentils [the main component of the cod dish], I would like it. I tried the lentils and they’re in the middle. [Editor’s note: Regular readers know that “in the middle” is code for “I don’t like it.”]
Maureen: The salsa verde is absolutely fantastic. I love it.
Tim: What’s in it?
Maureen: Parsley, basil, mint, capers, anchovies, garlic and olive oil. The usual. I didn’t listen to Lucas and chop it up myself. That would have made prep time even longer. I used my food processor for that. It’s the reason God created the food processor; to chop up all the necessary herbs for salsa verde. Lucas said to chop up the herbs by hand and do the majority in a fine chop, and then do the last bit in bigger pieces. But I feel you can just regulate how it is by using the pulse on the machine. Not to mention the bits that fly up on to the side of the bowl.
Maureen: I liked the fish and the salsa verde. I’m not so sure about the lentils.
Tim: I liked it all, but I thought the lentils could be a hotter, temperature wise.
Maureen: That’s a failure of the cook, not the cookbook. They were finished before everything else.
Tim: [Looking at three plates with lentils still on them] The lentils were not a big success.
Maureen: No, they were not. I thought this might be the lentil dish that made me a lentil fan, but it was not to be. Even if it did smell nice as I was cooking it.
Tim: Lentils are big with vegetarians.
Maureen: Maybe that’s the problem. I’m about as far away from a vegetarian mindset as one could get. On to the cake!
Andrew: This cake is very nice.
Maureen: It’s called Go-with-Anything Cake. It’s another flourless cake. That’s one of the good things about this cookbook. It has a lot of gluten-free cake recipes.
Tim: It’s really nice. I can’t figure out what’s in there. Butter? Almonds?
Maureen: There’s no butter, believe it or not. It’s got eggs, which you separate, sugar, ground almonds, lemon juice, lemon zest and cinnamon. To be honest, I didn’t think this cake would work. After you separate the eggs, you beat the egg whites and make what he calls a “paste” with everything else. I found the “paste” to be more like concrete, though once I added the first batch of egg white to loosen it up, it got better. But the cake is really nice, especially with fresh raspberries, like we’re having now. Would you like me to make it again?
All (enthusiastically): Yes!
Tim: I think it could go with anything. Even lentils.
Boys: UGH! That’s gross!
Tim: But it’s Go-With-Anything cake!