I’m no stranger to taking a good stiff drink a little too far, particularly if I’ve got extra red wine handy in the kitchen. And that’s why, after years and years of trial-and-error, I’ve developed the best recipes for the American home cook to cure even the most loathsome of hangovers.
The Peasant’s Beef Bourguignon
This recipe is a slight variation of my award-winning beef bourguignon creation, but I’ve modified it so that it can be prepared while you nurse your pounding headache. Begin by heating water in a large pot on the stove, stopping briefly to drink some of it and take a quick nap on the kitchen floor. I find that resting quietly on my back will soothe my head, but, if you’re worried about some of last night’s dinner –a gorgeous quiche Lorraine—coming back up, you can always slouch against your confection oven. Next you’ll want to add the beef to the water and chop your carrots. If this feels too tedious, just add a garnish of parsley to the boiling water to brighten it and call it “acompli!”.
Ingredients: Water, anti-nausea medication (Paul will fetch it for you), a sprig of parsley or something
You really need not to bother to make a tart as you may have one lying around already. You see, a “tart” is often a sort-of light, beautiful fruit-based pastry, or someone who has a reputation for sleeping around. By the time you piece together the hazy events of last night, you, my dear, will realize that you are in fact the tart in this simple French dish. To “flambé” your tarte, simply add a generous pour of any liqueur of your choice –bypassing the use of a blow torch or flame of any kind—and voila!
Ingredients: A well-known reputation for casual sexual encounters, a strong liqueur
I always say, the measure of a good cook is how well he or she can roast a chicken. But, the truest measure of a CHEF is how well they’re able to do so while recovering from a night of heavy alcohol consumption. Gradually compiled from my own trials, remedies, and errors—corrected as I’ve cooked my way through the years, I’ve honed my roasted chicken recipe, drinking almost daily to achieve the kind of grueling hangovers that allow me to perfect my craft. The secret to mastering this dish is a two-pronged approach: a full stick of butter and a full bottle of whatever red wine you have on hand. I recommend nursing the wine throughout the cooking process to stay loose and on your toes.
Ingredients: Butter, red wine, potentially a de-feathered bird (though not necessarily required)
I wrote Mastering the Art of French Cooking because I felt called to teach the basic American cook how to cook and how to eat. And now, I’ve been called to write again, but this time it’s something even more dear to my heart: hangover cure recipes.
As I always say, so long as you can flambé a tarte or roast a bird, you can drink really as much as you want because if you’re all alone in the kitchen, nobody will know. Bon appétit!
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Elsa Nierenberg is a stand-up comedian, comedic writer, and student at Bryn Mawr College. You can find more of her writing online at Little Old Lady Comedy, The Belladonna, WICF Daily and others. She performs stand-up throughout Boston and Philadelphia. Follow her on twitter @ElsaNierenberg