Dinner 2/11/22

Chicken Parmesan

I used to love watching all the cooking shows on PBS on Saturday afternoons, but over the last year or so, as I have largely stopped watching broadcast TV, I have turned to YouTube for my cooking show fix. I am a big fan of Chef John and Food Wishes, Babish, and Sam The Cooking Guy. One of STCG’s episodes last week was for a homemade chicken parm, and it got me hankering for one REAL bad. However, we don’t have a deep fryer, and the appeal of the chicken parm definitely comes from the deep fried chicken cutlet. My wife wanted to go out for dinner on Friday night because she’d had a very stressful week, so I seized the opportunity and convinced her we needed to go to a local spaghetti joint.

We went to Bertini’s in Salem, which has been in business for almost 80 years, so you know they must do something right. It’s still like 1979 or 80 in their dining room, and the crowd in the bar was bigger than the crowd in the dinig room, but no matter. A spaghetti joint can always be counted on for all the usual Italian-American favorites.

I had this good-looking chicken parm, a house salad of iceberg lettuce with creamy Italian dressing, a side of spaghetti, and a glass of Chianti. The only missing element was the red-checkered tablecloth. I’m not old enough to remember when Italian food was thought of as exotic, but I am old enough to remember when it was still a big deal to go to an Italian restaurant like this. Now they are actually kind of a rarity, and this kind of food is the province of pizza joints, In fact, I imagine this restaurant really survives on its pizza business and the bar room. Anyway, it certianly hit the spot, and I had a slice of lemon meringue pie for dessert and went home well-fed.

Author: Brian Kane

I am a middle-aged, middle-class cis-het white dude. Sorry.

One thought on “Dinner 2/11/22”

  1. That looks tasty. My mom and her (80+ y.o.) pals have loved this place for years, especially for their fresh fish (who knew?) and reasonable prices, and it’s definitely still popular with families for the pizza and other specialties. I heard recently that the owners are retiring and the adult children aren’t carrying on the business, so it will apparently be closing in the next year or so. Such a shame since, as you noted, places like this have become a rarity. I have to imagine the property is highly desirable, though, either to the adjacent university or to developers, so the family will hopefully do well on their way out. Still, it will be a loss.

    Like

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