Valencia Rice……Nicaragua ….page 211
We have now had over ten days off school due to Hurricane Sandy. While we were spared from direct damage, we have friends, colleagues and students who were not so lucky. We have been trying to aid in relief efforts wherever possible, by raising money, donating goods and also doing some processing of trauma with different people. It is very evident that proximity to suffering has its own heaviness, its own velocity in a sense. So I have tried to also take time to reflect and turn inwards.
This cooking blog began as a way for me to process the grief of losing my grandmother, my dearest friend in many senses. And while new losses have arisen for others, it never fails to surprise me how the wound reopens. In defiance of all rationality, the suddenness and unpredictability of Sandy has cycled me back around to this which seems to have established itself in my psyche as the original loss by which all others are measured.
So I return again to the kitchen. To the simple, directness of making food that nourishes my body and sustains me. In the midst of the confining cabin fever of days indoors, the recipe project has also provided something for Mateo and I to work on together. We don’t know how to clear drains, to rewire electricity, to clear asbestos. We do know how to chop vegetables, to simmer, to fry.
This was a dish I had been avoiding for some time. It requires getting half the pans in the house dirty, cooking two kinds of meat and six types of vegetables. It was exactly what I needed to do this evening.