Around this time last year I gave up. I fell apart in my doctor’s office. The pain was too much, I was going to lose my mind. She gave me strong pills and I fell away from the world for a long time. While I was there suffering from cold sweats and chemically-induced vertigo (yeah, no couch holiday for me) all I thought about, next to wanting to go back home to BC, was getting back into my kitchen. I could barely hold a knife at the time. Food was really the last thing I wanted and yet, I wanted to be in my kitchen.
It is not about the eating. It is about the creating. Fingers in the dough. Hands dangerously closed to my new mandolin. Investing in my mixer Rebel with my car accident money. It was all a bittersweet adventure to take me away from my reality, from my physical pain. There wasn’t much I cared for in the world in anymore. No place to run and hide. I was trapped. My kitchen became my one escape.
Tasteless pasta salad that was almost impossible to save but with vinegar and old cheddar I managed to make it edible for my tastebuds. Even my husband thought it was too bland!
I over-baked the hell out of this focaccia which instead of being moist and soft was hard and chewy.
It wasn’t until after I turned on the breadmaker that I realized the egg white mentioned in the recipe was supposed to be used as an egg wash for the French Bread before it went into the oven. It explained why when I checked in on the dough (which I always do) it was so dry and tough and needed extra water.
This foodie disaster ended up having a happy ending, the French bread was still delicious and made the best garlic bread I have ever eaten.
Two years I have tried to keep an open mind and no matter what I bake or cook, I just do not like where I am. Before I moved here my food was pretty flawless and almost magical. I was happy and that happiness was in each bite I created. You could literally taste it. I am trying to make happy food memories here, getting back my cooking and baking mojo.
Still, there are days when I can barely lift up a knife. Last week for my birthday my hand pain was so bad my husband had to open my gifts for me. The food I make here has been good but I know the dash of happiness is missing. Still, I try. I am off the couch, no longer in a drug-induced coma. I live around the pain and try to escape it in my kitchen.
My life may look delicious and covered with sprinkles but I am just a clown crying tearlessly under all that white makeup. Searching for that magical recipe that will transport me back home.