Not French Onion Dip

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This week’s recipe is an adaptation of an apparent Tuscan comfort food as recorded by a Tuscan-raised food writer who rediscovered the dish in a chic Roman restaurant just as chic restaurants Eternal City wide were bandwagoning as only really innovative and vibrant hot spots can.

The food writer is Giancarlo Caldesi and the cookbook this recipe is taken from is Rome: Centuries in and Italian Kitchen, co-written with his wife, Katie. My copy lists the publishing date as 2015 so given time for writing, editing, art direction, printing, and distribution, I’m guessing the Caldesis ate at Roscioli, the chic Roman restaurant where Giancarlo reacquainted himself with cipolle sotto sale or salt baked onions, in 2012 or 2013.

Brian McCannachie performed a bit on National Lampoon’s Radio Hour back in the early 70s called “Quick Canada Quiz.” He would pop in and ask a, as the name of the skit implies, quick question about Canada and then later in the show ask the question again and give the answer. I had to look up who voiced it. Until today I thought it was Chevy Chase. What I couldn’t find was a direct transcript of one of my favorite suddenly-not-Chevy Chase lines from the quiz, but it was something like “What song was number one on the Canadian pop charts for August of 1971?”

I’m sure I got the year wrong, but anyway, he came back later in the show and asked again. “What song was number one on the Canadian pop charts for August 1971?” Then a beat pause. “I don’t know, but I’m willing to bet that whatever it was, it was number one on the U.S. charts six months earlier.” Rim shot.

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