This past week I ate more banquet food than I ever desired – as if anyone ever desires overcooked chicken breasts. Among all the ordinary meals, I shared some great moments. Most importantly, my first love – the Guilford Green Foundation – received an award this weekend in Raleigh from the Human Rights Campaign. It was a long time coming – for this acknowledgment is a flicker in the history of this organizations successes. The lives saved… and touched…and moved… are surely the moments they hold most dear – but it never hurts to have a standing ovation from hundreds of LGBT advocates. Kudos to the hundreds of volunteers and donors that made these moments a reality. What does this have to do with food? Not much – other than it explains why I have been cooking and posting less these past few days.
On the way to Chicago last month I read Eat, Memory by New York Times food writer Amanda Hesser. This collection of essays on food and food memories reminded me of all the fond food memories I have. Most the memories I’ve shared here on MMoM are from my childhood but I have so so many from my adult travels. Before the days of home and puppy ownership, I found the time to travel to Europe about once a year. I have so many memories – and probably many I don’t remember due to the copious amounts of alcohol consumed. I will never attempt to recreate some of the meals I had in the home of Mary James Lawrence and Xavier in the South of France (they are just too good to fool around with). But some of the simpler meals – like a spicy pasta in Belgium or garlicy shrimp in Spain I’ll experiment with. I tried to recreate these two on Sunday night. Lots of garlic – and close enough without a plane ride.