Hello, friends! It has been a wee while since I last posted, and a few things have changed! Most notably, in the 7 days, life in America has come to a screeching halt as we went from watching the Coronavirus wreak havoc on China and Italy, to seeing it take hold on our shores. As a result, the authorities are asking us (and moving toward forcing us) to stay home and avoid going out into public any more than necessary.
This of course poses some unique challenges with regard to our food habits and begs the question of how we will plan meal-wise for the next couple of weeks (months?). While I worry and pray for any affected by this illness, I do believe there is something primal about stripping away the activities, offices, sports, restaurants, concerts and everything else we moderns fill our days with. It’s an experiment that I have not personally witnessed in my lifetime.
My prayer, in addition to minimizing the physical as well as economic damage of this, is that in stripping everything away, we might perhaps have a moment to live a more grounded life. Perhaps it will give us all a break from the distractions, force us to be a little more present where we really are, and remind us of the basics of life. Yes many of us will be having unprecedented connection online to work and school platforms, group chats, FaceTime, and other virtual forms of community, not to mention the large amounts of tv we might end up watching. But I hope we also take the chance to rediscover our neighbors, give thanks for the immediate things we have in our lives, and enjoy the simple outdoors.
I am going to try to post a recipe everyday that can be made using readily available ingredients that are either pantry or freezer friendly.
So here’s the first recipe that I made up as a way of getting myself a nice warm lunch when I’m home in the morning. I do it when I’m in no rush but don’t feel like fussing. The ingredients are flexible so use whatever you have around. It may not be the most beautiful thing to look at but it’s so good and simple!
Poor man’s paella (serves 2 but easily adapted)
- 1 carrot, chopped
- 1 piece celery, chopped
- 1/4 cup chopped onion
- Other chopped (fresh or frozen) veggie (peas, peppers, mushrooms, etc)
- 1/2 cup (ideally short grain) rice
- 2 cups chicken broth
- 1 tsp tomato paste
- 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 2 thinly sliced good quality hot dogs
- 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
Mix all the ingredients together and bake at 325 for about 1 hour or so. At this point, break up the mixture a bit and redistribute the ingredients. Return to the oven until nicely browned. If you want it on the table quicker, use a higher temperature.