4 weeks ago
Monday, March 3, 2008
Wherein I Officially End An Important Relationship
Crunchy Chicken made my fifteen minutes of armchair activism fairly easy this morning, with her most recent campaign to fix the farm bill. I urge you all to write your representative about this. The farm bill doesn't get much attention, which is weird considering how it almost single-handedly directs how agriculture is conducted in this country. Crunchy makes it super-easy for you too providing a template and everything. I took her template, and tweaked it a little to talk about how modifying the farm bill is good for California as well as the rest of the country.
Speaking of food, I gotta tell you, I never, ever thought of myself as someone who could cook before. Oh, I could follow a recipe, but to me there's a keen distinction between following a recipe (which anyone who can read can do) and cooking. I could do the former, and I could do the former well, even for complicated dishes. But I did not know how to cook the simplest dish.
But ever since DeSloFooMo, I've been forced to learn. Now that frozen or one-serving meals are pretty much verboten, if I want to eat, I have to do more than microwave. And I gotta tell you, that what started as a personal campaign against waste has become much more. It's not just that frozen meals produce a lot of trash, they have a lot of preservatives and sodium. And frankly? Now that I've started to remember what a home cooked meal tastes like? Well, Lean Cusine just doesn't compare.
On Wednesday night, I decided to try out a turkey-bacon chili recipe for the first time. I left out two spices I didn't have, and subbed in five others that I did have. Six months ago, I would never, ever have thought to defy a recipe. That would be blasphemy! I would have hurried off to the store and bought the two spices I didn't own, and never thought of adding anything else. But, now those once-weak cooking muscles are much stronger, and I'm no longer afraid to use those muscles. It's exciting to take a recipe and "make it my own," as Simon Cowell would say.
Fast-forward to Friday, when I handed a bowl of my chili to a co-worker of mine. "Wow," she said tasting it. "You know, I'm a Texan, and so I'm a huge chili snob. This? Is good chili."
Wow. No one ever complimented my microwaving skills like that!
So, sorry, Lean Cuisine. You probably have been wondering why I've been avoiding your eye in the grocery store. Why I ignore your calls. You send me coupons (5 for $10!) and I am still not enticed. And well, you've been good to me in the past, so I feel I owe you an explanation.
It's like this. We had a good run. But frankly, I've changed, and you ... well you haven't. It's not your fault, exactly. It's me. I want more than what you could provide me. I want food instead of maltodextrin and xanthan gum, and taste instead of cardboard. You were convenient, Lean Cuisine, but you didn't have much else to offer. So it's over. Don't try to call me or email anymore. Let's just agree to go our separate ways. No muss. No fuss. Breaking up is never easy. But it's time.