We all have to eat – the choice we’re lucky to have is how and what we eat. When I was younger the concept was fascinating to me and I went through a couple of stages;
- Whoa – you mix all of these separate things together like flour, eggs, sugar, spices and it makes pancakes, or bread, or muffins? That must be magic!!
- Wait… meat comes from cute little animals? I’m going to be a vegetarian.*(This lasted for about 3 years and I learnt to prepare things I otherwise might not have so it was a great experience.)
- Now that I live on my own I’m going to eat what I want, when I want… Holy sh*t!! Food is expensive!! (I learn how to make Mr. Noodles at least 20 ways. Seriously – I wish I was kidding.)
- Very start of my career – trying to fit a social life, networking, a career that isn’t exactly 9 – 5, volunteering, taking care of a dog (an amazing little pug left over from a less-than-amazing relationship) into my day. It feels impossible to find time to cook and I learn a lot of shortcuts when it comes to baking.
These days cooking is something I fit in however I can; I cut corners when I’m busy and I take my time and experiment when I’m able to. Even though I live on my own there is just something about taking the time to make myself something nice, pour a glass of wine and enjoy it after a long day. But I think my absolute favorite things about cooking is when I get to share it with other people.
I love showing up somewhere with cupcakes or treats. I love having family or friends over and putting the time into making something for them. Because that’s the things about food we keep moving away from – it’s meant to be enjoyable and it can be very social. Talking about it, sharing photos/recipes/ideas, taking pride in the things we prepare and *gasp* trying something new – it’s all about the experience.
So for my first post here is a picture of what I made for dinner last night and then how I made it. Easy, fast, simple and tasted amazing – one of my favorite after-work sandwiches.
What’s in it: Whole grain bread, sliced green apple, old cheddar, pancetta (you could add a bit of grainy mustard if you like or aioli, but I prefer it just like this)
What you do: Like the challenging task of making any sandwich, you just layer the ingredients between the bread slices. Then brush a bit of olive oil on the bread and grill in a pan over medium heat until toasted and melty. Garnish with a side of sliced green apple sprinkled with fresh cracked black pepper. (Tart apple and black pepper is a seriously underrated combination.)
* Let me preemptively say that this is in no way intended to offend vegetarians or mock the dietary choices that anyone makes. I was a vegetarian at a time when choices were very limited and am impressed by the options now available. Meat substitutes and tofu still make up a regular part of my diet and the meat I buy I largely obtain from locally sourced butchers. I believe that what we eat – much like a person’s lifestyle, is a very personal choice. There are a number of things I refuse to eat (rabbit, veal, poussin, foie gras etc.)