Tuesday, June 10, 2014

All Because of a Delightful Peach Cobbler

Health, Recreation, & Fitness ---

About a month ago I attended a book signing and cooking demo at William-Sonoma in downtown Manhattan.  Deborah Boracas' book, Guyana's Tasty Exotic: Foods of Six Peoples was the main feature, and of course she was on hand to talk about her book of Guyanese recipes and to do a bit of show-and-tell (the really fun part).  I became aware of the event the day before, as I noticed it advertised on FaceBook.  I just had to attend - all because of a peach cobbler.  You see, I had met Ms. Boracas once before when she accepted an invitation to come to my school to explore the possibility of making a presentation to our students.  What really struck me about her was her affability and down-to-earthness.  I felt as if I knew her all my life.  But the most delightful part of our meeting was that she showed up with a freshly baked, still warm, golden brown peach cobbler. Oh...my...God!!!!   

So when I decided to go to Deborah's book signing event my experience of partaking of that peach cobbler several months before was still vividly present.  Like the first meeting, this second meeting was equally fantastic.   On this occasion I got to see Deborah in action as she prepared one of the recipes in her book. The way she engaged her audience was extremely fascinating.  We were more than just passive observers. It was as if we were in her kitchen having a conversation with her as she prepared the meal.  There was no rush.  She was laid-back, funny, and warm.  Occasionally I would lift my head and realize that we were not in her kitchen after all but in a store with business transactions being conducted around us.

The energy, passion, and love of cooking that I saw emanate from Deborah as she engaged her audience at her book-signing event is the same energy and passion that one will find in her book.  The book is an invitation to participate in the sumptuous variety of Guyanese cuisine.  The first instant I opened the book I turned to the table of contents to see if my favorite pastry, "salara", were there.  Sure enough it was, as were recipes of other pastries and dishes with which I grew up in our beautiful Guyana.  What Deborah adds to her recipes is a touch of class, healthy choices of ingredients, and her unique artistry and expertise.  Anyone who can cook as she does or can make a peach cobbler like she makes ought to be worshipped.  Deborah's book, available on Amazon, is a fitting successor to and a tremendous improvement of the all-time favorite Guyanese recipe book, "What's Cooking in Guyana".