Plenty of dads these days are the primary cooks in their families. And when I was growing up (not very long ago), my dad was part of that burgeoning group of guy chefs. But my father was not your typical backyard griller, lasagna maker or fricasée-er. His foodview was much more global—though he might emerge from the kitchen with something fairly normal like chicken soup or a batch of muffins, he was just as likely to whip up burekas, grape gazpacho, or Georgian cheese bread. He would take out Moroccan or Argentinian cookbooks from the library and read them cover to cover. When mangoes or curries came up in conversation, he'd refer to the class he once took with Madhur Jaffrey.
So I was raised eating turmeric and cumin, seaweed and sesame oil, nigella seeds and cellophane noodles, all of which I happily gobbled up. I'm grateful to my father for teaching me to be a food snob—I mean, to appreciate and understand foods of all nations—and for providing me with so many delicious home-cooked meals. And since that early exposure to gourmet and world cuisine is probably why I'm writing this right now, here (after the jump) is a Father's Day menu in honor of my dad, full of the dishes that I remember enjoying at our dining room table.
(The dessert is the one exception—chocolate is one of my least favorite foods, believe it or not, so my memories of my dad's chocolate cookies mostly involve the two of us looking at each other perplexedly while he ate them all.)
- Cucumber Yogurt Soup
- North African Carrot Salad
- Chicken Marbella
- Garlic Potatoes
- Maida Heatter's Chocolate Whoppers
Menu: Father's Day Grillfest