Last night was the second installation of Ginny's Salon Series, featuring writer and critic Hilton Als. The White Girls author chose ten notable books to discuss over dinner, and the reading list included works such as Drown, Tar Baby, and Brown Girl, Brownstones. It was this last book that was Als's mother's favorite—he recalls, "The only way my mother got peace was to lock herself in the bathroom and read."—and was also one of the books that first revealed Als's own passion for literature and his deep need to express it.
Als examined the tie between literature and hospitality, noting, "The marvelous thing about cooking is how it bring people together." And a full room at Ginny's was indeed brought together with a delicious menu inspired by Als's reading list. The five-course menu was as follows, and also included wine pairings:
Amuse Drown by Junot Diaz Camarones Tostones, Chicharone, Frijoles Negro
First Course Tar Baby by Toni Morrison Brown Girl, Brownstones by Paule Marshall The Gulf by Edward P. Jones Salt Baked Red Snapper, Roasted Corn Cou Cou Coconut Broth
Second Course Go Tell it on the Mountain by James Baldwin Lost in the City by Edward P. Jones A Street in Bronzeville by Gwendolyn Brooks Braised Bacon, Butter Beans, Fried Egg Crispy Cockscomb, Corn Bread
Entrée Lady Sings the Blues by Billie Holiday Cane by Jean Toomer Tenderloin of Beef, “Corned” Brisket Croquette Morel- Savoy Cabbage Ragout, Marrow Sauce
Dessert Annie John by Jamaica Kincaid “The Red Girl”