Everything but the green eggs
It might have been my most memorable Easter dinner, but there were no pink rabbits, blue eggs or baked ham with cherry sauce. At dinner time we were greeted by a platoon of white-coated chefs, some from Germany. others from Austria, Slovakia and Hungary. They all promised us a gourmet dining experience with glimpses through the dining room windows of a passing cavalcade.
It was 1999 and we were cruising the Danube on the MV Mozart. I still have a copy of the Easter menu:
- Jelly of calf's tongue with tomato dressing
- Essence of guinea fowl with walnut-ginger dumplings
- Lettuce with radish, hot croutons and pumpkinseed oil dressing
- Fried river trout fillet with fine noodles
- Grapefruit campari sorbet
- Saddle of lamb in noodle paste on rosemary gravy and ratatouille
- and two kinds of Bavarian cream with fresh fruits.
- Plus, the maitre d' suggested four appropriate wines to accompany the various courses.
At the end of the meal the entire kitchen crew marched back into the dining room and accepted clapping and cheers.
No ham, blue eggs or pink rabbits, but the patrons might have been described as stuffed pigs after terminating the meal with cookies, tea and a selection of international cheeses.
I was mentally recalling that experience recently with the tribulations encountered aboard The Carnival Triumph, cruising American style.
For five days recently the passengers were offered little food, put up with a broken sewage system, flooded rooms and an absence of both heat and air conditioning.
But it was all worthwhile because after being herded ashore in Alabama (of all places) the passengers were informed that they could keep the bathrobes they had lived in during the ordeal.
Now you know what they will be wearing in this spring's Easter Parade.
If there are just going to be two of you for Easter Dinner you might consider buying two ham steaks to create:
Ham What Am
Mix two generous tablespoons full of orange marmalade with one tablespoon of dry mustard. Smear this over the top of the ham steaks and shove into a 400 oven until heated through.
Remove steaks to a heated platter and to juices remaining in the pan add 1/4 cup beef bouillon and a shot of marsala wine.
Let the liquid boil down then mix a tablespoon of cornstarch with a small amount of cold water, stir into the sauce and when it thickens pour over the ham steaks.