Tonight is going to be exceedingly brief because I’m ready for bed.
I planned a wonderful photo post, full of pictures of my friend and I having fun and making our pad Thai. But then two things happened that waylaid my plans. For one, I was so busy cooking and visiting and having fun I forgot to take pictures of the whole process. For another, my phone has decided that all pictures need an awkward blue tint.
So you’ll have to take my word for it. The two of us had a great time, as always, albeit with less wine and more water. And that recipe? Pure perfection. We made it with a number of substitutions (because we both view recipes as suggestions rather than scriptures), the most notable of which was using zucchini “noodles” (made with my fantastic new kitchen toy) instead of spaghetti squash. I highly recommend you make it this way as well. There was just something about the shape and length of the zucchini that spaghetti squash can’t match in a faux pad Thai. One other cooking note: next time we make it, we’re going to add fresh cilantro after plating. Good pad Thai needs that fresh herb taste to balance the creamy and the spicy. We finished the meal feeling like we’d just gorged on deliciously naughty food, which kind of makes the meal even better since everything was so good for us.
The other thing of note tonight was how happy I was to cook with someone again. I have missed that in the past few weeks. There’s just something about creating together and then sitting down and having no qualms going on and on about what a great job you just did. The cooking also gives you a chance to chat about anything, whether it’s life changing or mundane. Frankly, it’s how I’ve created some of my closest adult relationships. It’s also how I was raised. The kitchen was the heart of our house. While I’ve liked cooking for myself every day for the past 15 days, I didn’t realize until tonight how much I’d missed sharing kitchen space and meals with someone else.
A few years ago, my sister went to Penzey’s to buy some spices. She ended up with a free bumper sticker that proclaims, “Love people. Cook them tasty food.” She added it to my birthday present that year. Since that day, it’s been hanging on my fridge and has become the theme for my life. It’s good to have finally found the junction between my new way of eating and my old way of living. For that matter, it’s also good to have friends and family who embrace my new way of eating instead of questioning or criticizing. I would like to spend a number of my next 14 days cooking tasty food with people again.