i went to drain the liquid off the top of my yogurt

What the Water Gave Me - iesika - Hannibal (TV) [Archive of Our Own]
An Archive of Our Own, a project of the Organization for Transformative Works
By Organization for Transformative Works

In the summer of 2011, psychiatrist and FBI consultant Dr. Hannibal Lecter travels with a crack forensic team to the murder capital of America to assist the New Orleans field office in hunting a possible serial killer. But bodies aren’t the most interesting thing he finds when the water starts to rise.

Or, what would have happened if Will never left Louisiana?

Chapter 9 is up!

“Am I to be your victim, then?” Hannibal asks her, holding his arms out for access as he catches her intent. This is much better than if he had volunteered the information himself.

“Yeah, I’m gonna get ya,” Beverly says cheerfully. She takes hold of his left arm with her left hand and reaches under his right arm with hers. The movement brings her slim body flush against his back, and the smell of her apricot shampoo to his nose. “Knife in,” she says, poking him with the butt end of a ballpoint pen some four inches left of his navel. “Up and over.” She drags the pen up until it nudges his ribs on the opposite side.

Brian scratches his beard as he watches them. “That’s pretty intimate.”

“And then guts everywhere. Slow painful death, shallow grave, alligators eat your face.”

Or, what’s been eating John Doe?

This is a Louisiana black bear. Please note: She smol.

There are bears in parts of South Louisiana and one or two spots in western Mississippi. Most Louisiana black bears are in the Atchafalaya parishes where this fic is mostly set. There is some argument over whether they are a true subspecies, but they are definitely not like the bears in the rest of the country. They are small, meek and slender, without the thick undercoats and padding that black bears have in colder places, and their faces are long and pointy. They are also often brown instead of black. From my limited experience with wild bears they are weirdly dainty eaters and are terrified of cats.

The Louisiana black bear was removed from the threatened list this year. They were disappearing due to habitat lost, but conservation and reforestation efforts have been pretty successful. I am (literally and figuratively) wearing my Black Bear Conservation Commission t-shirt today.

Please look at these good good swamp bears.

Creole Cream Cheese, mentioned briefly in Hannibal’s breakfast, is sort of in between crème fraîche and cream cheese, but with less fat. It’s a truly regional food that almost went extinct in the last few decades as local dairies and markets were replaced by huge national companies. When I was a kid you could get it at every regional supermarket and drug store, and then all those local chains got bought out by national ones too, and not only could I not find creole cream cheese ice cream at my K&B, I couldn’t even find a K&B. And then everybody turned into foodies, and it became cool to make cheese at home and to serve local dairy at your fancy restaurant and shop at local markets, and now it’s back! But if I’d known how easy it was to make back then, I never would have had to go without because it is as easy to make as jello or something.

Creole Cream Cheese

  • 2 gallons of skim milk
  • 1 pint buttermilk
  • ½ tsp liquid rennet or ½ rennet tablet
  • (no really that’s it)
  • some cream or half and half, optional

This recipe requires the following fancy specialized equipment: a big pot, a thermometer, and some empty plastic food containers. Like old pint yogurt or sour cream containers. Very fancy.

Mix everything in a big pot and heat to 80 ° F while stirring. Keep it there a few minutes then turn off the heat. Cover tightly and leave out at room temperature for about 3 hours. At that point you can drain the whey and pack the cheese in smaller containers. I recommend you pour a little cream or half and half on top before putting it away.

This is really good with fruit, especially sweetened with sugar or honey, or spread on toast with preserves or salt and pepper. Or you can do my favorite thing and eat it with crackers or raw zucchini and radish slices and pepper jelly.

Or you can make really good ice cream out of it and eat it with strawberries, or use it for anything you’d use cream cheese or maybe even ricotta for, like a cheesecake.