A 13-year Central Coast resident, Dr. Adept is the principal at the Art of Integration as well as the founder of the Church of Chocolate. She worked as a chef in a French restaurant in Cambridge, England.
“Although I started with savory dishes, cooking for film night also offers wonderful opportunities to make more sweet dishes than I would make just for myself, at home. I specialize in chocolate desserts, and find they are very well received by the group,” Dr. Adept said. “Film night has also enabled me to brush up non-chocolate recipes such as Sour Cherry Cheesecake and Frangipane – always a favorite.
“Another factor has been to find dishes that reheat well, that retain their heat, taste just as good lukewarm, or that can receive their final finish in someone else’s kitchen. As with potlucks, there’s always a timing issue,” she said. “Recipes tend to work best that end up in one dish, with sauce. Fortunately, a few years ago I bought myself a wonderful set of Le Creuset casseroles. (In case you are not familiar with Le Creuset, this is a French firm that manufactures first-class enameled cast-iron cookware in a range of colors.) These heavy pans can be used on the stove top and in the oven; they retain heat for half an hour or more, allowing one to carry a cooked dish to a friend’s house, and then serve it, still warm, to the assembled viewers.”
Finally, she said, “I also had to find or create dishes that are flexible as to ingredients. One regular at film night cannot eat onions,and one of the hosts doesn’t care for fish. I myself am allergic to crustaceans and bivalves, so although I offer fish from time to time, shellfish is out.”
“I encourage you to experiments with ingredients that suit your palate (and your diet).Like many people these days, I do better with lots of protein and vegetables, and minimal carbohydrates,” Dr. Adept said. Many people also find wheat and dairy products difficult to digest, so there are many vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free recipes in this collection, which is organized by film genres, she said.
“If you enjoy eating with groups of like-minded people, this cookbook will make you the star of your next potluck, church supper or book club,” she said. “It might even inspire you to set up your own film night! Make sure to get your copy at Tecolate Bookshop, Montecito on June 1.”