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Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Cooking for people makes me feel good.

I'm pretty sure I received that from my mom who loved to cook when she was still at home. After moving away from Wisconsin, every time I returned home the visit would revolve around food. She'd make my favorite childhood dish -- meatballs and dumplings -- and I would grill out.

Last weekend, I made a dairy-free frittata for my friend Kellie, who also cooks for me. Onion, roasted red pepper, zucchini seasoned with salt and pepper and fresh basil from my deck. That was all softened on the stovetop before I added the eggs and baked it at 325 degrees for 25 minutes.

Normally, I'm thick skinned but my cooking ego is a brittle little thing. She assured me it was delicious.

With more eggs available I tried making a Spanish tortilla -- which is entirely different than a Mexican tortilla. The Spanish version is thinly sliced potatoes and onions cooked and softened in too much oil. The oil is then drained and whipped eggs are poured over the top. I baked that as well with much salt and pepper. Potatoes need, to me, a fair amount of salt.

It was OK. But I make the mistake of comparing it to the version at Don Quijote in Valparaiso, Indiana. The chef/owner there, though has likely made tens of thousands of tortillas and has it down to a science. (Carlos Rivero is the chef and it's worth a trip just to meet him.)

I told a friend at a nearby bar what I cooked during the weekend and promised to bring her the last piece of tortilla. I added a salad from a pot on my deck.

I know how I feel when others cook for me and it was nice to share that feeling with others.

People seemed surprised that I like to cook.

"Fat guy gotta eat," I responded.

As I continue to unpack, I've promised myself this will happen more and more.

So put in your order now.

Peace unto Ukraine and peace and sustenance unto you my brothers and sisters.


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