OK, it's not really Shakespeare's birthday, but it is the day the Bard and his timeless words are commemorated. We like timeless here! And whose life can't use a little more romance and poetry?
"This night I hold an old accustom'd feast,
Whereto I have invited many a guest,
Such as I love..."
In Shakespeare's Kitchen, food historian Francine Segan has updated scores of Elizabethan recipes -- a deliciously retro change of pace. Aside from a few unusual ingredients (you can subsitute fruit-flavored vinegar for verjuice), everything is recognizable, and yet delightfully different. The Sweet Pea Puree is a refreshing way to serve an old standard, and the Fish Bisque with Chestnuts and Artichokes is a crowd-pleaser. GQ-tip: avoid the Renaissance Rice Balls (they're harder than they look), but everything else is exceptionally delicious!