I’m back in this, my very own kitchen, after a week in Salt Lake City visiting family (dear family) and snow (oh, snow) and snow-covered slopes (yes, the rumors are true: Utah has the best skiing snow on the planet).
During our travels home, as our little family tried to engage each other in road trip chitchat, my oldest, Emmie, got all gung ho about New Year’s resolutions. She urged me to make one, and so here it is: I resolve to learn more about making bread this year. Which will mean actually baking bread. A lot. I know, I’ve mentioned this before on these pages, but my desire is true. So expect to hear more from me about flours and frustration, rise times and how I can’t possibly have enough time to nurture a proper loaf.
Part two of that resolution is to get the girls more involved, to make them (would encourage be a better word?) learn, in the hope that they won’t be half as intimidated as I am by the prospect. And, in the meantime, I resolve to include them more in other cooking tasks. We’ll see how it goes.
But committed as I am to my open-kitchen philosophy, to welcoming Emmie and Quinn to take turns with the mixer and to elbow their way into my sacred stirring space, I’ll still insist on showing them my love by shooing them out of the kitchen from time to time, to urge them to play nicely on the other side of the counter while I do my thing.
Girls, you need to know that right now I am happy to be zesting a lemon. Please, don’t ask me to play Pollys with you. Later I promise to demonstrate my love by sitting on the floor with you and your toy horses, whinnying my best whinny.
But just for right now let me ever-so-finely chop an onion so that you get the flavor without so much as perceiving where it comes from in this, your most finicky of stages so far. Let me whisk and simmer, stir and braise. Let me show you I love you with fresh herbs and wild salmon. Let me offer you the bite of a perfectly boiled noodle. Let me show you what figs are like paired with goat cheese and wrapped in lahvosh.
Is this selfish, this want to show my love in this way? Heck, yes, it is. But I promise your taste buds, selfish bumps that they are, will someday thank me.