APRIL RECIPE OF THE MONTH
Warm chicken salad, with watermelon, feta and pepitas. For when you’ve had enough curried chicken amok to last a lifetime, you’ve got the lonesome lovesick blues, and you feel like falling asleep with your face in some really classy food without burning your nose.
Cooking time is around thirty minutes to half an hour, longer if you are on Valium. You'll need scissors, a corkscrew, and maybe some razor blades. Anything sharp will do.
Serves one person and a refrigerator
Half a chicken (as Kierkegaard once said, half a chicken is better than no chicken at all)
Half a watermelon-sized watermelon
250g feta cheese
Juice of two limes
Sea salt and cracked pepper
CHOOSING A WINE
The phenomenologist Maurice Merleau-Ponty rejects the rationalist view of an autonomous subject who can make fully objective decisions. On the other hand, he rejects determinist views of the world as constituted of solid objects, including our bodies, which follow hard causal laws. For Merleau-Ponty, people are ambiguously free. People are neither completely determined by the things in which they are embedded, nor are they completely independent of them. Thing-person interactions are ambiguous. One cannot determine how much an action or response is self-motivated, motivated by the thing itself, or by previous interactions with things that influence the current interaction. I hope this helps.
Make sure you have a corkscrew handy. Like W.C. Fields, i was once stranded without a corkscrew and had to survive on nothing but food and water for days.
Open the wine. If your hands shake as you do this, it could be a sign of malaria, or worse, that other tropical malaise, the dreaded delirium tremens. Either way, it might be best if you were to open the wine and let it sit and breathe while you mix some pre-drink drinks. I recommend Valium with a gin and tonic chaser. This should cover all the bases.
Knock back the G&T&V and mix another. Now, plug in the iPod and dial up some music. Because there is no way you should be fooling around trying to turn over an LP twenty-two minutes from now. You know you’ll either scratch your record really badly or fall asleep and wake up with grooves on the side of your face. Use the iPod. Try Floating Into The Night (1989) by dream pop artist Julee Cruise.
While you are still capable, grab a pair of scissors and cut the chicken into bite-sized pieces. Mind your fingers. Heat up some sesame oil in the pan and throw in the chicken. It should make a sound like a high voltage transmission line on a humid day. Meanwhile, slice the watermelon into wedge-sized wedges.
When the chicken is nearly done - and make sure it is done, don't get me started on pink bits at this point - throw in a handful of pepita seeds, those green things that come out of pumpkins. Did say 100g? I’m not really good at estimating the weight of anything that is not a white powder. Let’s just call it a handful, shall we? Once you’ve browned the chicken and pepitas, throw it into a large bowl and let it cool for a while. You’re making a warm chicken salad here. Now is the right time to get started on the wine. Pour out a generous splash.
Women. Don't get me started on women...
Once the chickeny pepita stuff has cooled a bit, toss in the watermelon and crumble the feta, then squeeze on the lime juice. Be generous with the lime juice, the sea salt, and the cracked pepper. Hmm. Is the word 'generous' really applicable if it is only for your own self? Surely not. So instead, be greedy with the lime juice, the sea salt, and the cracked pepper. Serve up however much you think you can eat before you float off into the night. Grab some cling wrap and, à la Bad Boy Bubby, cling wrap the rest and put it in the refrigerator. Because tomorrow will be another long, lonely, and generally soul-sapping day in which you will once again require sustenance. But then, maybe tomorrow you could ditch the self-pity and try something with mushrooms. The mushrooms here in the Penh are, by all reports, magic.
Drugs. Now don't get me started on drugs...