Grace (A Prosatio Silban Amuse-Bouche)

“HAS ANYONE EVER SENT BACK a meal that you’ve prepared?” the tentative young man asked Prosatio Silban.

“Twice,” was the cook-errant’s reply. “It is not an experience I relished, or wish to repeat.”

“How did it come about?”

“The first time, I had pan-fried some oal-kidneys which were not done to my patron’s liking. The second involved a dish which I had, through some rushed oversight, failed to adequately season.”

“And what happened next?”

“In the second instance, I explained the situation and made my amends at table with a pinch of ocean salt and a sprinkling of good ground vinegar-peppers. The first was a case of mistaken palate – the diner wanted something both crisped and creamy, and thought the kidneys would serve that office. I suggested instead sautéed duck-livers, and he went away contented. The customers may always be right, but in order to please, the cook must know better than they do.”

(If you’re new to these tales, here are the preface and introduction. And if you want the first 85 stories in one easy-to-read package, here’s the e-book!)

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