Growing up, the cast iron skillets always hung in the same place. The forks were always on the right of the spoons, and there was always butter sitting at room temperature next to the honey and coffee for morning breakfast preparation. There was always milk in the refrigerator — the type changed over the years from whole to skim to soy to skim back to whole — and I could always count on some flavor of yogurt. We never ran out of flour, and there was always some type of seasonal fruit in a while bowl on the island. Growing up, my kitchen was a sort of rock, a foundation, a steady horse that always gave me what I wanted and always supported my creative outlets in front of the stove and in the oven.
Living in the City, a year and a half has taught me, has completely shattered my ideas of what a kitchen should be. Maybe it is the fact that my kitchen now is half the size, if not smaller, than my childhood’s. Maybe it’s that food is more expensive now, or that I have to buy it, period. It might be my lack of cutlery, or the fact that some of my utensils are still packed away from my first move into the city (see: I have now moved four times in under two years). Whatever it is, I find myself going out much more often. Almost to the point that I feel like I am throwing away money into the open doors of every restaurant. I have to concede that going out to new restaurants to see what other people are doing with food that I know and love is extremely important to foster your own voice in the culinary arts (you must read to be able to write, or so they say), but when I find myself going out at every opportunity and cooking only when I feel like I am sinning against my own craft it turns into a problem: lack of creativity.
So, to restart the my writing on this blog, and tie myself to stove (where I know I belong), I am starting a challenge. At least four meals at home a week (breakfasts and lunches included). I’ve made plenty of promises I haven’t kept in the past, but hopefully this isn’t one of them.
To a month of cooking at home, and returning to my childhood kitchen.