Friday, October 5, 2007

Thoughts and food

Today it is thoughts first. Then food. After all, this is my first blog entry, and I think you deserve a little introduction.

I discovered my first delightful food blog about a month ago when I stumbled upon Molly's Orangette
through a series of links. I was instantly hooked. Not only is she a talented writer and cook, but she transports me home to the Pacific Northwest. You see, I'm a roaming college student who is currently in the state of Texas this particular school year. I knew I could easily subtitle my blog something like "the culinary adventures of a college student," but when it all came together that idea was set aside. Regardless, I would like to emphasize the adventure it truly is trying to find good ingredients in this barren land of West Texas!

(I also felt like sticking the "college student" line in my header would earn me some grace regarding my haphazard collection of kitchen tools, tight budget, etc.)

The most important thing to me in stepping into this endeavor is to address more than just the relationship of baking soda with lemon juice but the relationship between people and food. It is undeniable.

I'm not going to lie: food gives me sooo much pleasure. The way balsamic vinegar tickles my tongue as it rolls off the leaves of spinach salad. The way the smell of granola fills the whole house as it toasts in the oven. The way a simple apple crisp with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream can taunt me as its warm and cold contents marble and inevitably disappear from the bowl.

I have been so spoiled by the good food I have enjoyed in my life.

And that's where I pause with this blog and ask, "why me?" Why do I have the privilege of going on about fresh bread, homemade pesto, and chocolate cake? The answer to the why isn't so important as not forgetting the abundance in which I live and being humbly grateful for it all (especially when I'm in the grocery store longingly staring at the most expensive bottle of olive oil).

As much as I want this to be a light, enjoyable blog with tantalizing recipes and beautiful pictures, I do strive to take seriously the gift of food. I hate to eat on a full stomach, even when it's the last crumbs of my mom's banana rum bread because something about that cheapens the act of gratitude. It also perpetuates a natural attitude of immediacy, which, though widely embraced in the West, I would prefer to avoid.

I am sure I'm not alone in this search for balance as a food blogger (and consumer), but it will likely continue to come up in my writing as I process life through challenging risotto recipes, daring salad combinations, and every possible variation on the scone. And hopefully I'll know when to stop and pick up my journal or a book when the flour runs low, or I'll know when my stomach's only pretending to grumble because it wants to distract me from the mountain of homework I have to do.

Bear with me, dear reader. This is a lifetime work in progress. I do not practice what I preach all the time, but I do believe what I say here with all my soul.

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