It’s hard to be in the USA and escape politics even for a brief respite, just like bad reality TV it sucks you right back in. First of all, let me just get this out of the way first, I am still with her and no he is absolutely not my president. Every morning I wake up and wonder what new horrors await us, some days it is quiet and other days we have Nazis carrying torches marching in the streets and a known racist, unbelievably cruel sheriff being pardoned. Some days I know General Kelly has hidden his phone other days there is storm of hysterical tweets that I know he wrote himself.
The national political scene is exhausting, the racism which I knew always existed in the USA has been given permission to be more vocal than ever. The hatred of anyone considered to be “the other” is out there loud and proud. There is a vocal group in the USA who believe that women are better off barefoot and pregnant, that LGBTQ individuals are just sinners, that minorities should know their place, that all immigrants are wicked, criminal people. I can’t fix this, there is no cure for the hatred that is taught from generation to generation. I can however teach my own child that discrimination is never okay, and I hope we are doing that. We try to make our home welcome, we try not to judge others, and we try to acknowledge our inherent privilege granted by the color of our skin and (apparent) social class. It is not always easy. But we try, we try because we all have a role to play in teaching our children the importance of equality, humility and empathy. I do sincerely hope that we are raising a generation of children who will finally be the generation to move past these embedded hatreds.
Where does this fit into my run up to the BIG 5-0? I am trying to be well, and trying to remain balanced so I am cooking, I am surrounding myself with friends, and sometimes even friends who do not agree with me – because I certainly do not want to be in an echo chamber. I am listening, and I am watching what happens locally and nationally. I am of course also cooking, and getting ready for Poppy to start the 2nd grade!
What am I cooking? Last night was simple salmon, which I oven roasted even though my heart told me to use the sous vide. Honestly, cook salmon in a sous vide a few times and you will never want it cooked any other way! Tonight, will finally be the pork chops stuffed with manchego and serrano. The actual recipe in the Curaté calls for Black Forest ham but I love the salty toothiness of serrano so much! I am going to serve this with risotto and who knows maybe I will even try my hand at arancini with the left overs! I am still struggling to find the balance to do everything I want to do with this project, but each week seems to bring a new idea and a new challenge!
This past weekend I finally got Poppy to follow a recipe and we made brownies from scratch, they were delicious especially since I accidentally added almond essence instead of vanilla – chocolate and almonds? What’s not to love? Poppy tends to be a very “experimental” baker which has led to some very interesting bakes and has cost me a couple of muffin pans.
This weekend we are having a cook out and for this one I have pulled a favorite book off the shelf: Persiana – Recipes from the Middle East & Beyond by Sabrina Ghayour. I have had this book for a while and there are some amazingly tasty yet simple dishes that are just designed to be shared! Be on the lookout for pistachio dip, rosemary and saffron chicken and spiced beef kotlets! And maybe, just maybe I picked this menu, not to use up the many pounds of beef and chicken in my freezer, but to show that by excluding entire groups of people from our country we would miss out on so much. I can’t whisk my friends to Persia for a visit, but I can at least recreate some of the food and some of the tastes.