I found this book at the library today. It’s by Ken Albala and Rosanna Nafziger.
And in the first pages I was lost and my heart was aching.
….Americans have been convinced that cooking is drudgery, an odious task to be avoided at any cost, so that time might be freed up to do other more Important things. For the sake of saving labor, these new products were highly processed, packed with artificial flavors and additives, and were usually seriously lacking in the single most indispensable attribute of gastronomic pleasure: Honest Good Taste. Or they were so loaded with sugar and flavor enhancers that our palates eventually became jaded, to the point that we came to prefer powdered fluorescent drinks over real juice, flaccid canned vegetables over briskly crunchy fresh greens, even heinous atrocities such as margarine over real butter. And what did we do with all that free time? We worked longer hours in the office, and came home to work out on our basement treadmills. When you think of it, what could be more important than feeding yourself and others with good food and truly enjoying the experience?”
Lately I have this thing where I eat something delicious, close my eyes, make a slight audible noise, and when I finally open my eyes I say “That was so good it makes me mad.”
Mad because how will anything ever top that taste I just had in my mouth? Mad that maybe the next bite won’t be so delicious.
My 12 year old looked soulfully in my eyes yesterday and said “Mom. As soon as we get back to The Butter Churn, I want to buy some of those cheese curds with my own money and eat them till I’m sick. I didn’t know I would miss the food so much”
So I hear I sit. At my laptop. Wishing for an tomato that tastes like a tomato. Wanting to make a Grilled Cheese with that Dill Cheddar and a slab of tomato. Where the bread is a bit toasted in some places more than others, and you can taste the tang of the Boetje’s.
And do you know what I really need? I need people who want to have a Foodie Book Club at The Butter Churn. I need to know people are reading and eating and cooking at that store. I want to be reading these delicious books, then going to the store for a meeting – to talk about the story and cook. I need this internet. I need you to contact me and we need to set this up.
(And I still need a potential coffee shop business person too. Just Sayin’.)
AND – tomorrow is Sample Saturday. Where if you are anywhere near Woodhull, Illinois – YOU can put all that amazing food in your mouth and buy some and take it home.