A Feast For The Senses

huggingthecoast.jpgOne of the blogs recently added to my favorites’ list (blogroll) is the culinary delight Hugging The Coast, which provides user friendly recipes, well organized, colorful and interesting, with a keen sense of humor. “When properly made, the sight and smell of a cheesy, bubbly lasagna coming out of the oven has been known to make the knees of strong men go a little wobbly, and the diabolically addictive layering of flavors has been responsible for more than a few loosened belts.” A vivid description of an Italian delight that perhaps would even draw the attention of Sophia Loren who was quoted as saying: “Spaghetti can be eaten most successfully if you inhale it like a vacuum cleaner.”

Wonderful imagery for one of the few foreign actresses adopted by Hollywood as one of there own, and a metaphor for food and its effects on our lives and culture. This is a blog that is a celebration of coastal life, food and travel. Its founder Doug DuCap , a former New York City cab driver, became a legendary southern cook and was named the grand prize winner of the taste of the south recipe competition. DuCap’s inspiration was his friend the late James L. Gulledge , a noted ornithologist who did pioneering work in the Galapagos Islands, Ecuador, and Venezuela. Perhaps one of the many heirs of the late Julia Child who brought French cooking to the attention of so many in the United States and whose fascinating life is currently in post production starring Meryl Streep as the Grand Dame due for release in April 2009.

As we all know, Lasagna can be a complicated dish to make, time consuming and expensive. A layer of this, a layer of that. Another layer on top of it all and doused with tomato sauce and cheese. A complicated affair for the novice and for those with limited time. Mr. DuCap has the logical solution to resolve all the confusion. His version uses Ravioli, “which combines the pasta and ricotta in one step, and uses a gussied-up jar sauce to save time. I kept it pretty basic, but there’s a lot of room for personalization, depending on what you like or what you have at hand. You can use ground turkey or chicken in place of the ground beef, and even toss in some julienned pepperoni.”

The only question I have is: Could I use Manicotti instead of Ravioli?

Five “Bon Appetites” to a wonderfully creative blog, and a good read with an artful view of cooking layered with practicality and humor and a sense for making gourmet cooking available to everyone.