Sutter Homes July Book Club Pick: Indiscretion by Charles Dubow
Harry and Madeleine Winslow have been blessed with talent, money, and charm. Harry a National Book Award–winning author on the cusp of greatness and Madeleine is a woman of sublime beauty and grace play host to a coterie of close friends and acolytes eager to bask in their golden radiance at their summer home in East Hampton.
One weekend at the start of the summer season, Harry and Maddy meet Claire and cannot help but be enchanted by her winsome youth, quiet intelligence, and disarming naiveté. Drawn by the Winslows’ inscrutable magnetism, Claire eagerly falls into their welcoming orbit. But over the course of the summer, her reverence transforms into a dangerous desire. By Labor Day, it is no longer enough to remain one of their hangers-on.
Indiscretion is a sure to be a hit with your book club – especially if you pair it with this recipe and Sutter Homes Wine’s Sauvignon Blanc. Author Charles Dubow explains why swordfish is a perfect pairing for his irresistible novel:
One of the joys of summer on the East End of Long Island is the local seafood and vegetables. I have memories of many nights of eating on the screened-in dining porch off our old house on Georgica Pond. For me, there is nothing better than a dinner of grilled swordfish paired with fresh tomatoes and lightly steamed corn—corn so sweet you don’t even need butter. This is a variant of that classic meal, where the use of pine branches adds a deliciously woody smokiness to the fish.
In my novel Indiscretion, much of the action seems to revolve around food, whether cooked at home or consumed in restaurants. The heroine, Maddy, is a great amateur cook. In fact, when we first meet her, she is marshaling a squad of helpers in her kitchen during a party that her husband Harry has organized. She cooks because it gives her pleasure but also because it is a way for her to express her love for those she loves. In the first part of the book this is a meal she prepares for friends who have slogged their way out from New York on the Long Island Expressway on a Friday in July. It is a simple dinner but, along with a cocktail to take the edge off and a few glasses of cold white wine, on a summer night in the Hamptons nothing could be more perfect.
2 one lb. swordfish fillets
Salt and pepper (to taste)
Dry pine branches approx. 12 inches long
Long-handled folding grill
Salt and pepper the swordfish to taste. Open folding grill. Line with several pine branches (2-3 should be sufficient.) Place swordfish on bed of pine branches. Lay a few more branches on top. Close grill.
Hold over an open fire pit for 2-3 minutes per side. (It is best to cook over an open fire pit or charcoal grill, but an electric grill will suffice if no alternative.)
Remove from grill and plate.
Squeeze lemon and serve.
Serve, as mentioned above, with tomato slices and lightly steamed corn on the cob. A warm baguette would also be a nice addition. For dessert, fresh fruit with vanilla ice cream.