Good morning. It seems ridiculous today, the nation roiled with anger, beset by fear and uncertainty, to tell you how nice it would be to make waffles, to eat in the fog still drifting past the window as the breakfast hour turns to brunch. It seems crazy to be recommending recipes.
What comfort can any of that bring to a country, deeply divided, that together must continue to face a pandemic, an economic breakdown and protests across the nation all at once? Cooking, that joyful act, seems near powerless in the face of our grief and worry, our fury and fix-minded determination, our deep estrangement from one another, our exhausted selves.
And yet it is not. It is one thing you can do that can make someone elseâ€™s life a little better, if only for a few minutes. It is a way to offer the world a gift.
I canâ€™t, though. I have no chickens. So Iâ€™ll put on my mask and buy some nice eggs today, some good vegetables from the farm, score some oysters, a few pounds of local meat. Iâ€™m lucky to be working, lucky to get paid for the labor, lucky to be able to afford my groceries still. Iâ€™ll unload my bags, clean everything and Iâ€™ll cook for those around me, and for a few others as well, people I know are only holding on by a thread.
Wednesday I wonâ€™t even use a recipe, but freestyle my way into a kale salad of heft and means instead. Iâ€™ll use whatâ€™s left on sandwiches on Thursday and take one to a friend I havenâ€™t seen in months, four blocks away: turkey and the softened kale, some mayonnaise, tiles of Cheddar, decent bread.
And then, to round out the week, nachos because nachos are an excellent way to round out the week. No one doesnâ€™t love nachos.
Finally, a geography lesson. On Friday in this space I put Tampa in southwest Florida, which itâ€™s not. Itâ€™s more central-west. Iâ€™m sorry for that. See you tomorrow.