As many of you who know me are aware, I believe that world peace can only really ever be achieved by the careful use of either pork or alcohol. The alcohol is easy. Get everyone really drunk and either they’ll get it all out in a nice, healthy, barroom brawl, or they’ll all just pass out and feel stupid the next day for having kissed a dozen rugby players and a couple of women the night before.
The pork thing is pretty easy to figure out too, though. Think about it. Most of the major world conflicts are between non-pork eating cultures. India and Pakistan. Iran and Iraq. Isreal and the Palestinians. Etc. I mean, you don’t really see a whole lot of Italians and Spanish going at each other, do you? And yet you do see a whole lot of Italians and Spanish sitting around drinking wine and munching on excellent ham. So there you go. Anyway, the secret to world peace, I’m ever more convinced, is a big old pig roast. Just think about it. Get all these bigwig muckety-mucks down to W’s ranch for some good beer and a barely solid pig that’s been slowly turning on a spit for a few days over a low fire…The thing is, after something like that, you’re incapable of not loving your fellow man. I just want, if W gets around to trying this little endeavor, to be given a share of that Nobel Peace Prize for having come up with this brilliant idea in the first place. In fact, I’d say let’s just do it at my Pa’s farm, but the whole secret service thing would probably make the horses nervous.
Anyway, in the same vein of the mutually enhancing properties of alcohol and pork, this editor dude named Josh Karpf has a description of his search for the perfect pork martini on his Web site www.foody.org.
It’s a brilliant idea, not too far from another porky endeavor Pete and Mike and I will make millions off of one of these days. But it’s also such a hoot of a read. For example:
Tasting was overseen by a collection of sprightly, generic-yet-authentic Cole Porter oldies such as “Let’s Do It,” “I’ve Got You Under My Skin,” and “Always True To You in My Fashion.” Hot, salted Chinese “imitation” egg noodles and tap water were on hand to clear the palate. And there was even a lovely blond in the room: me.
The sweet dried pork Martini, despite the lack of apparent surface oil, coated the bottom of my upper lip with a tangy pork greasiness. I was casually impressed, though I began to worry about what the more visibly oily pork vodkas would later offer. The chilled Martini had a piggy bouquet beyond its plain pork-vodka aroma. Was that the endothermic effect of the chilled liquor alerting the nose, or the action of the herb-steeped vermouth? I sipped a little. No aftertaste or aftereffect beyond the expected tummy warmth. Little flavor at all, in fact. Dried meats would seem less than optimum.
The ground pork Martini’s scent was powerful with essence of pork patty. This is not a cocktail for the pork Martini dilettante: Like specifically demanding from your bartender a “vodka Martini” instead of the understood default gin Martini, you’ll have to specify the “pork patty Martini” instead of a vanilla version, and make sure he or she fries the pork just right, searing the surfaces, draining the fat, and not letting it burn while you chase Naomi or Leonardo into a restroom. Come back when it’s mixed. Wow. This Martini packed a pork wallop. The aroma was overpowering, I have to admit. But that masked the oil; I saw the oil before, really, see my comments under “Transmogrification,” supra, but I tasted no oil. I declaim this a Martini you will love or hate, no middle ground. You could get drunk on the bouquet alone, a secondary high. Your neighbor will notice — and I mean your next-door neighbor, as you mix this at home, not the crackhead on the next barstool — and ask “Hey, is that pork you’re drinking?” “Yes!” you trumpet proudly. A great way to make new friends. Unless he or she is a vegetarian. But who wants a vegetarian friend?
You should, most definitely, take a look at the site too, if not to read the rest of the article, then at least to see the rather unnerving photos of the various pork martinis he tried.
And elsewhere on his site, Tales from the Coop, his take on meetings from the Park Slope Food Coop should appeal to those who’ve ever been on any sort of board that drove them crazy.