No matter what I do, I cannot seem to take a bite of food and not taste a story.
When the Chef ordered this cheese for the restaurant the first time, I couldn’t stop taking little nibbles. The tangy rind, the oozing smooth layer closest to that rind, and the flaky white center, standing firm. Buche de Maitre Seguin is a beautiful cheese.
Try it crumbled on top of butter leaf lettuce salads, with avocado and champagne vinaigrette. Salad never felt so decadent on the tongue.
I swear, I was just going to post this photo, with no story, no words. Just a photo. That was the plan.
And then, yesterday, after I dropped the Chef off at the restaurant, and gave him a dozen kisses, plus ten more, I walked into the sunshine. And then, I turned around and went back in. The car needed a check-up. I was on my way to the mechanics, where the car would sit in the secret cave for the next few hours. I would write in a nearby coffee shop until nearly five.
Now, here’s the problem. If you have to eat gluten-free, and you are in a coffee shop for more than half an hour, you are trapped into hunger. With a few rare exceptions in Seattle, I cannot go into any coffee shop and find something to eat. Muffins, scones, cookies, pizza bread, brioche, little baguettes, and olive oil crackers they all contain gluten. There is coffee, and bottled water, and tea. But even some herbal teas have malt flavoring in them. Essentially, it’s a steady stream of foam and caffeine, with nothing to take the edge off the gnawing in the stomach.
I turned to the Chef and told him of my dilemma. “Do you have some almonds I can have?” (I had not planned ahead.)
His eyes went wide, and his face took on that naughty delight he loves to live in. He raised a finger, to say, “Give me a minute.”
I went out into the restaurant to take some more photos.
A minute later, he handed me a white to-go box, folded up and closed. He watched me open it. I sensed his smile when I squealed. Inside? A few pieces of pâte, with a dab of mustard. Pickled ramps. Kalamata olives. And three small rounds of this Buche de Maitre Seguin.
I threw my arms around him, of course. No one has ever packed me such a brown-bag lunch as this.
Every time I taste this cheese now, I will think of this story.