What’s the difference between borscht and alt-country music?
Filmed at the behest of Rookie, an online magazine by and for teenage girls, Neko’s videotaped lesson is both basic and refreshingly unexacting. Her status as the child of Ukrainian immigrants affords her the street cred to tell viewers they should take it as a sign they’re on the right track should someone of eastern European extraction insist they’re doing it wrong. (Her on-camera version is gluten-free, and—prior to the addition of sour cream and chicken stock—lactose-free and vegan, as well.)
Interested in sampling her version? Put the laptop on the counter. You won’t miss anything if you commence chopping right away. The demo is as casual as her lack of styling, clocking in at nearly twenty minutes, including tips for tear-free onion cutting, celery leaf usage, and the making of mirepoix.
You’ll also get a tiny taste of “Man,” the first single from her soon-to-drop new album,The Worse Things Get, The Harder I Fight, The Harder I Fight, The More I Love You, though keep your ears peeled for the song that plays as the credits roll. In an age defined by such pressure cooker shows as Top Chef, Hell’s Kitchen, and Chopped, the phrase “If I puked up some sonnets, would you call me a miracle” is oddly alt-appetizing.
Neko Case’s new album is still streaming for free at NPR’s First Listen site.