The School of Essential Ingredients

I am not sure how I stumbled upon this book. No one on the blog has pasted about it. Perhaps it was from a Goodreads recommendation? Or maybe I saw it on the NY Times bestseller list? No matter where I learned of it, this book was perfect for me though. Despite the fact that I have been quite absent from our food blog of late, it isn't for lack of cooking. At least 5 nights a week I am slaving* (*side note: slaving carries such a negative connotation for me, just with the obvious reference to the history of slaves and all; it seems like you are doing something you are forced to do. I am not forced to cook each night, I LOVE it, and thankfully looking up the word "slaving" just shows it to mean "work very hard. Phew)" - back to where I was, yes slaving over the hot stove and/or oven most nights a week. I just enjoy cooking so much. Most stuff turns out great (admittedly, this past week I cooked something that I did not like. It was a first time recipe, and a last. I apologized to the family for the meal. They were nice and ate it anyways, I'm sure suffering all the while.) It is something I enjoy doing for myself, and something I love sharing with others.

Another thing I love? When things just work out. Haven't you just been have a bad day? Or a bad week? Maybe even a bad year? Or just a bad afternoon? And without giving any details to the company you are with - after an activity, an event, a discussion, a few minutes with a good book, a few hours with a touching film - things are just better. You didn't solve your problem, no one is any bit the wiser of what you are going through, but things are just better. There are a few things that can do that for me. Reading, cleaning, running, hanging out with my godson, and the list can go on, but most certainly, cooking is on that list.

This is a quick read. It would probably make a great vacation book. I also think it would be a great book club book (I am recommending it this month for mine.) Of sorts, a collection of short stories, and how the stories are weaved together.

Many times I tell friends, hey, just visit the Northwest, specifically the Portland area, and you will understand me better. I now have a book that I can share with them, also a way to get to know their quite closed off, quite quiet friend, better.


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