Cooking Slow Food


Every day I am cooking. But not so, just heating up some processed food. No! I gotta complicate my existence and offer my family a two or three dishes lunch. Every day!

When kids return from their schools, first thing they do is head to the kitchen, exploring what’s in the steaming pots for them. Their first thought is about eating: “What’s for lunch?” or “Anything delicious you cooked for us today?” The twins, even if they’ve already been served lunch at their school cafeteria, when they arrive at home, bit later on, they keep manifesting the same curiosity… about lunch. They are always so impatient before dinner comes, so they can eat the same food we ate at lunch.

All of this sounds normal, or maybe it sounded normal — during a late gone epoch. Then it was normal for the housewife to spend quite some time in the kitchen, cooking delicious and healthy lunches. Setting the table… Clearing the table. Great invention the dishwasher!

However, with a numerous family like ours, our dishwasher runs at least twice a day, and sometimes it is ultimately overwhelmed, so the kitchen enters the night in a less picturesque fashion.

In the OTTO winter catalog, I noticed a prominent plastic sunflower deco that you may lay inside the kitchen sink as the last gesture you’d have to do in that place and call it a day! Initially, I was attracted by that product because sunflowers are not boring. Yes, you find them as a motif on so many kitchen items. Still, it’s the confident yellow color of sunflowers, maybe, smiling back at you, that makes you happy. The original flower lives to smile at the Sun after all. It is a wonderful kitchen motif and brings you into a good and pleasant mood. But how should I lay this cute thing down in my kitchen sink? More precisely: When? Some (not so often) times it happens I get the sink tidy by 9 or 10 pm. Then every morning, before 5 am, I’m having to use it. So I gave up! I smile back at another sunflower motif, painted on a big wonderful mug of mine, a birthday present. Then I have to stare at it when it rings, because that is another sunflower, sculpted on top of my cooking timer, reminding me not to over-bake the stuff in the oven.

Sunflower mug and cooking timer.
Oh yes, by the way: Back to cooking, my every day task! According to a recent survey by Nestle one may assume that only a quarter of the population is eating traditional, home cooked meals. And –because of the word “traditional”– much of this slow food is fat. No one asked what kind of fat? Lard- or olive-based? Leaving fat types for another time, the traditional slow food quarter is opposite to the fast food three quarters left out there. Yes, industrially processed food rules the game in our society. Almost everything is canned, or wrapped in some plastic bag, aluminium foil, or nested in white styrofoam containers. Everything claims to “help” the housewife! But how about her health?

Our parents, and grandparents, were taught to enjoy home cooked dishes, the so-called “slow food” trend nowadays. Late in the autumns, they spent considerable amounts of time filling their home canning supplies, for the winter, with fruits and vegetables. So they may avoid buying them from the food industries.

This is not anymore a chance for the modern woman. Even if she would love pickling some fresh cucumbers for the winter, she can’t. Because every morning she’s gotta run to her job, which happens to be her main income source, in most cases. After inhaling all alien stress at the workplace, she comes back home. It’s almost evening. No time, and definitely not in the mood, for an elaborate home cooking seance. You cannot peel the raddishes, nor skin the carrots, after 5 pm. So you’ll give away the thought of a good healthy natural soup in favor of the instant soup. Actually, not only the soup is “instant” now. This because of the industrially processed foods and, of course, the microwave oven. The other “great” invention!

Then coming, again, the children, each of them with her, or his, unique problems. Then more housekeeping, maybe ironing hubby’s shirt, you’ll never know… Everything requires time and patience, and the day won’t grow past twenty-four hours, they say it’s actually shrinking.

At the end of such a day, the housewife is supposed to get in the mood for sex, isn’t she? Probably she finds some desire, but where to find the power and the time?

All of these are helping me realize that it’s a privilege that I must, and that I can, cook real natural food every day for my family. Sometimes I beg for an idea, to cook a new surprising dish for lunch. Some other times I’m in a haste or not exactly in my waters. Yet I am happy that I can still buy raw vegetables and not only processed foods. The dirty dishes? My dishwasher is dealing with this boring task. My sex sessions? Yes, I find time for them: in the morning, between breakfast and lunch cooking preparations.

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