Dispatches From Home: Day 4, Part 2

I’ve been thinking about food a lot today. More specifically, I’ve been trying to figure out how to stop thinking about it.

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Eating a piece of cake and drinking milk out of a Smurfette glass. Provenance and/or purpose of leaf: unknown.

I love to cook and cook meals at home very often, so we had a well-stocked pantry to begin with, and we made a few additional trips over the past few days to stock up on things like produce and items to freeze for later. There’s enough to feed an army here, yet this voice in the back of my brain is YELLING at me to reconsider: what if we run out of this or that? What if we don’t have produce for a few days and can’t eat a balanced diet? What if I want my favourite meal and can’t have it?

This is the typical anxious thought pattern I am caught in nearly all the time, but it’s never been related to food before. I’ve always had plenty (and for that I’m extremely lucky), so this fear is not rooted in any past experiences. I guess food, meals, and cooking are some of the very few parts of life that I can control right now, and my brain is now hellbent on controlling it perfectly. It sucks, but I suspect I’m not alone in feeling this way — we all bought a bunch of stuff over the past few days as the shutdowns were picking up steam, and now we have fridges full of produce and other items with various expiration dates and we’re wondering what to make and how to make it and if we even want to eat it in the first place.

Anyway, I’ve decided to turn this anxiety into #QuarantineCanteen, wherein I will consult my master pantry/fridge/freezer inventory every night and generate a menu for the next day based on what needs to be used up first. Here’s my list (which I now realize is incomplete) in case you want to see what I’m working with and/or want to ask why I need 3 tubs of sour cream (nachos! chilli! banana bread!). Everything’s going to be fine.

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It’s a lot of stuff and it’s going to make a lot of meals.

Dispatches From Home: Day 4, Part 1

This morning the Premier of Ontario declared of state of emergency in our province and ordered all bars and restaurants to close immediately if they cannot offer take-out or drive-thru options. I feel relieved.

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I wish I could explain.

This morning I woke up and ordered a GoPro, which I’ve wanted for a long time. I was looking forward to getting one for my upcoming bachelorette party in Portland, Oregon, which is all but cancelled now. We’ve been talking about this trip for months, maybe even years at this point, but I can’t think about that right now. I’ll bottle up my crushing disappointment for the moment and revisit it later.

So, a GoPro. It’ll be here on Thursday, because the world outside somehow continues to function despite all evidence to the contrary. I’m trying to focus on what I can control, and the one thing I can control right now is how I choose to spend my endless stretches of free time. What kind of videos will I make? I don’t know, I guess we’re about to find out.

I’ve also renamed my kitchen the Quarantine Canteen. Here’s what I’m working on this week:

No-Knead Crusty White Bread (King Arthur Flour)

I had a bread fail yesterday that made me really upset. There’s no space in my brain for letdowns right now! Trying it again with this recipe; it’s aging in the fridge now and I’ll report back once I’ve baked it.

Blondies, Infinitely Adaptable (Smitten Kitchen)

It is impossible to mess up this recipe, and it’s so good. Double it, cut the bars in the fridge, pop them in the freezer, and have treats for days (or hours, you do you).

Easy No-Roll, No-Stretch Sicilian-Style Square Pizza at Home (Serious Eats)

Carbs. Carbs! CARBS!!!