So Let Me Tell Ya What’s Cookin’

Veggie Soup

I am cooking! That’s what!

I am really excited to report this–as I feel this is the first time I am actually reporting on some progress.

It’s funny to think that the last time I posted I was lamenting that I had lost my relationship with food and cooking. But the “almost married” life can do something to a person aha. At this point I vaguely remember that feeling I had. Yet, I know it was pretty strong.

At the time I was writing–I hadn’t cooked in… well… in forever. I think I had just put too much pressure on myself and then a couple of traumatizing experiences involving food got in the mix. It’s really easy to stress yourself out about healthy eating–especially when you don’t really understand what you are doing. On top of that, I had an autoimmune disorder I was hoping to fix and thought going “Paleo” was the magic cure. It wasn’t. And although I didn’t hate it–I wouldn’t do it again. In hindsight, and now that I understand nutrition a little better, I realize that eating Paleo cut too many calories out of my diet. I was too active at the time to be doing that. My body needed nutriment, and so I lost too much weight at a rate that probably wasn’t healthy. I also obviously didn’t understand the connection between eating carbohydrates and optimal muscle/brain performance. And then, you know, there are the not so fun stories I could tell of being cheated on amidst trying to put Thanksgiving dinner on the table and stressing over anatomy and physiology exams. Needless to say, those types of stressors are just enough to make a gal want to drop the spatula (or whatever) for a good year or so.

And it was hard to pick that spatula back up again…

But it was helpful that I found my soulmate who also cares about nourishing his body with healthy foods. I didn’t realize what a difference it could make to be with someone who is on the same wavelength as me when it comes to eating and nutrition, but it certainly helps keep the right things in perspective.

He did intimidate me at first, though. His swiss upbringing made him a lot more competent and confident in the kitchen than my American upbringing had made me. Not that I mean to bag on my American upbringing, but as far as I’ve learned in school, witnessed around me, and experienced personally–few of us Americans have a similar relationship with food. Mealtimes are associated less with family bonding time, and lunch time is often an opportunity to eat out, not to go home and cook. And thus, it seems that few us are truly competent in the kitchen these days. Anyways…

So–for a while, my fiancé was dating a health peanut (nut sounds negative and I don’t mean to be negative) who didn’t cook. That was–until he got sick, and to my horror, unable to cook! It was a frightening realization to see that not only did I suddenly have to step up to the challenge and cook for my family, but that also my fiancé’s health depended on it! I was mortified. Now, in the past I’d have just served some canned chicken soup as my family had done for me and call it a day, but I knew that wasn’t happening this time. Canned chicken soup is all salt and really just awful in my opinion. It wasn’t real food to me, and I was sure my fiancé would only feel the same. So, I got to work. I found a healthy chicken soup recipe, and I went to the grocery store without my man for the first time since we’d been together, and I did some cooking without him to lead or hold my hand.

It. was. marvelous.

Although I was still quite uneasy about being in the kitchen, it felt so liberating to play with my old skills that I kept under wraps. It’s kind of like blogging, I guess–when you just have something in you you need to express. But there is also a feeling you get sometimes from cooking… from touching the raw ingredients. It’s like connection and creativity come together creating fireworks in your brain, and it’s extremely delightful.

So, ya. As much as I felt unprepared–I still got thrown into the lion’s den. Like Daniel, I survived. And–slowly but surely, I began cooking more and more. I haven’t really gotten into documenting any of my activity–like taking photos, etc. … Just to keep the integrity of meal times and meal prep (they are sacred bonding times here at our house). However, I think it may be a good idea to write more about my relationship with food. So–I do think that more of such posts are forthcoming.

Until then… Ciao ciao and happy cooking! Xx