This is a very good post and a fun video by Alan Richman featuring his field trip to CostCo with Eric Ripert. Yes, that's right, Eric Ripert. Chef and Co-owner of Le Berndardin and host of his show "Avec Eric". On Eric's show he goes to the farm, the market, the cheesemonger and with inspiration and fine foods, he produces a meal. Alan Richman decided to create "Avec Alan" and take Eric where Westchester-ites go for their culinary inspiration: CostCo. (Please don't tell my mother-in-law, I'll never hear the end of it!) Thanks to Carolyn Jung for the tip!
Now, this may fall into the category of too much information, and undoubtedly I will one day regret sharing this with you. But, I must, because it involves a dream I had with Eric Ripert. I know what you're thinking and everyone I've told this story to, giggles, blushes and tells me THEIR dream with Eric would be very different.
You see, mine was more like a nightmare.
I was in the kitchen avec Eric. Were we pawing each other and breathing heavily? Looking at each lustfully across the pass? No. I was standing beside the famous and famously nice and charming chef, with a knife in hand at the cutting board. He asked me to cut "brunoise."
I bring my knife down on whatever vegetable it was and suddenly, the knife acts like it has a mind of its own. Instead of cutting beautiful, small, even dice (AKA brunoise) I'm hacking huge uneven chunks like some one eyed zombie in a horror movie.
Mortified, I explain, "I'm so sorry chef. I know what brunoise is, really I do. I can do this!" Patient and calm but no longer smiling he nods for me to try again.
Beyond mortified. Once again my knife is possessed. Once again, huge ugly hunks of Flintstonian proportion.
Well, there you have it. If I were you, I'd stick avec Eric. Or even avec Alan.