Made a dish tonight that I hadn't made in five years, easy: chicken etouffee, a la Paul Prudhomme.
Actually, not so a la. I learned long ago to knock the butter back by about 60 percent, a fact Chef Paul himself figured out in part back in the mid-90s. My favorite sort of novelty part of making etouffee was throwing in the two sticks of butter, watching one of them float to a Valdez slick on the surface, then reading the instructions: "Skim surface of excess fat." It was Dadaist.
Nothing soils a kitchen like etouffee. You don't need a kitchen — you need a bonfire, a cauldron, and a witch doctor. Drinking wine while eating etouffee is like administering an IV. Without the tannic red to scour me insides, I'd probably be prone right now, versus posting.
I made it because, why, I don't know. I missed it. This will either make sense, or it won't.