My brother whispered a question during the rehearsal dinner on the eve of his formal wedding, “What’s a horse doover?”
I nearly spewed my drink and laughed out loud during the Maid of honor’s speech.
The word, “h’ors d’oeuvres” on the wedding feast menu, really looks like “horse doover” for the less linguistic. I should explain that I know a “horse doover” from a hole in the wall. According to my high school French teacher, the term refers to both singular and plural and is accurately pronounced /ɔrˈdɜrv/. She translates the word for our class, roughly as “out of work.” These unemployed appetizers indicate something that requires little work served before the main meal. As I choked my way through this explanation, light dawned on my brother’s face and he grinned.
The following is a recipe for polenta horse doovers, may they make your mouth amused*.
1 cup cornmeal Polenta
4 cups water
diced tomatoes, cherry tomato halves, tapenade, chopped basil, black beans, diced green onions, diced green chilies, chopped oregano, vegan parmesan, flavored salt, etc…
Cook the polenta according to package directions, spread over a lightly oiled cookie sheet, cover with plastic wrap and refridgerate until firm. Cut into 1″ diamonds, or small cookie cutter rounds and place on a lightly oiled cookie sheet. Cook with desired toppings equal to about 1 Tablespoon. Try diced tomatoes or tapenade or black beans. Drizzle with olive oil. Bake until golden brown about 20 minutes at 350 degrees F. Garnish with fresh herbs such as parsley, green onion, oregano, basil and a dash of flavored salt or vegan parmesan.
*a one bite appetizer, an amuse-bouche translates as a happy mouth.