Monday, October 6, 2008

Food, Glorious Food

I could be writing about so many more profound things, but I have to put in a good word for the joy of cooking. My stipend doesn't give me a lot to spend on food, so I get the fun challenge of being creative. There is something very satisfying about making something new and, if I am lucky, delicious. So far our well-stocked spice cabinet and leftover vegetables have been my best allies.
Recent inventions include:
  • Gluten-free peach pancakes (needed more peach) and a dill omlette stuffed with tomatoes (Why is there an enormous bottle of organic dill weed in our pantry?)
  • Black beans (a VSC house staple), carmelized onions, and shaved zucchini sauteed in garlic powder and olive oil

It helps that I have read yet another memoir by Gourmet editor Ruth Reichl. Her breezy, sunsual, hyperbolic style makes any meal seem like a sublime privilege. Just one chapter is enough to make you want to run and fire up the stove.
I've read her books in reverse order, just now getting to the initial volume about her hippie college days. Commune life and picking up random men in Morocco would likely have turned me off when I first discovered her, but now it seems very appropriate for my current life in a new city. Does she ever feel guilty about going establishment and working for mega-publications like the New York Times and Gourmet? If you have never heard of her, I recommend starting with Garlic and Sapphires, which chronicles her incognito restaurant reviews for the NYT.

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