“My mother was a terrific cook. I remember she once roasted 21 chickens, one per day, to find the perfect combination of moist meat and crispy skin!
“I'd have to say her best recipe was creamed sweetbreads and mushrooms. Without meaning to, she had an infallible method for getting picky kids to eat exotic foods. We didn't have much money, plus my father was a meat-and-potatoes man … So, she'd save up to buy things like lobster or sweetbreads, and cook them up late at night (she was also a working mother, very rare in those days) to eat them all by herself.
“We'd smell something yummy and go running downstairs in our PJs and beg for a taste. ‘Oh, you wouldn't like this,’ she would claim. ‘This is grown-up food.’
“Well, those are magic words to any kid. We'd keep begging and finally she'd give us a small taste. So, my sisters and I not only grew up with great everyday food (oxtails, corned beef, grilled porterhouse steaks and salmon teriyaki), but also developed a taste for lobster in garlic butter sauce and those magnificent creamed veal sweetbreads.”