Saturday, October 22, 2011

A Flavourful Dream, Part 1

counterpoint, n.  The technique of combining two or more melodic lines in such a way that they establish a harmonic relationship while retaining their linear individuality.

I had this dream the other night. I was on a game show called "Culinary Counterpoint," in which three contestants were each given two unusual ingredients and had to combine them into one dish.  They had one hour to complete the task, and then judges would decide which contestant had done the best job, thus determining the winner.

As I said, I was one of the contestants.  The other two contestants were "Fritz" from Switzerland and "Jürgen" from Germany.

The game show host pulled out a card and said, "Okay, Fritz, your two culinary counterpoint ingredients are chocolate and strawberries."

I looked at the host.  "You're giving the Swiss guy chocolate as an ingredient?  I thought this was supposed to be challenging!  Chocolate and strawberries aren't an unusual combination!"

He continued, "Jürgen, your two culinary counterpoint ingredients are pretzels and beer."

Again I protested, "You're giving the German guy pretzels and beer?  Those aren't even ingredients; they're food!"

He looked at me, "Annie, your culinary counterpoint ingredients are... huh! This is strange - you have THREE ingredients to incorporate.  Well, no one ever said counterpoint was restricted to two voices, so I guess you have an extra challenge ahead of you.  Your ingredients are bacon, peanut butter and lemons!"

I lost it.  "What are you smoking?  This is so unfair! There's no way I can combine those ingredients!"

He ignored me.  "The clock starts... NOW!"

Fritz ran off to his kitchen station and began melting dark chocolate to pipe into intricate, lace-like sculptures.

Jürgen ran off to his kitchen station, ate some pretzels and beer, and was deep in thought as to how to incorporate them into a unique dish.

I shuffled over to my station, complaining the whole way.  "He could at least have stuck with the nationality thing and given me hot dogs, potato chips and Coke. There's no way I can do anything with bacon, peanut butter and lemons.  No way."

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