Dinner, Balanchine Style

February 26, 2012

I’ve always been intrigued by dancers’ fascination with cooking. For all the talk about the dance world’s eating-disorder plague (a lot of it, unfortunately, merited), many dancers seem to find cooking (and eating) to be a great way to unwind after a stressful day at the studio. Gotta refuel after all that rehearsal, right?

Along those lines, here’s a delightful way to start your week: “Dinner with Mr. B.” The cute video (below) and accompanying blog post are the first in what will be a series. A group of bloggers and artists, led by Ryan Wenzel of bodiesneverlie.com and New York City Ballet soloist Antonio Carmena (who has legit skills—he’s a graduate of the French Culinary Institute), are cooking their way through The Ballet Cook Book, published in 1966. The book is a treasure trove of recipes submitted by ballet icons, compiled  by George Balanchine’s then-wife Tanaquil Le Clercq. Basically, the Ballet Cook Book dinner series is the dance-nerd version of Julie and Julia. Love it.

Balanchine was known for his cooking, and in the project’s first installment, the group makes some of Mr. B.’s own recipes: blinis, beet borschok (a sort of consommé), “fish dinner for two” and “banana sweet.” Most of it looks pretty delicious (maybe not the borschok, but hey, who knows). And the time-lapsed video documenting the process is adorable. Take a look!