What a quiet month July has been! Here in Michigan, many restaurants and businesses tried to go back to some sort of normal. However Len and I have remained isolated because the coronavirus isn't really disappearing. What's worse: the consequences of contracting the disease are turning out to be more severe and long-lasting than was first believed. So we're still eating every meal at home, having almost all groceries delivered, rarely getting take-out food, and keeping away from even our relatives -- though many people have started going out again. We did invite friends for a distanced outdoor visit once or twice.
But to get to my kitchen, where we are doing our own cooking, still avoiding most beef and pork purchases, still eating little chicken, and not changing much that's been true for the last 3 months. So what can I tell you about? We bought one new thing: a set of storage containers for flour: not interesting enough for a photo. The food we've cooked & eaten this month was not very different from earlier months of lockdown, but here are a few pictures:
|Local tomatoes are best... we can't always get them|
because safe shopping options are limited.
|Pizza dough from Len's sourdough starter.|
|We defrosted one piece of beef, bought before we swore off.|
We grilled it along with sweet potatoes made in the grill pan.
|We bought one chicken, which we also grilled.|
|Len made cinnamon rolls. What a treat!|
|Pasta with sugar snap peas and herbs.|
|More vegetarian food: packaged squash ravioli cooked in butter |
and sage leaves, served with mushrooms and green salad.
Savory pancakes with fresh garden herbs, a fried egg, and salad --
as usual, these use up the starter discard.
|Vegan curry with cauliflower, bell pepper, tomatoes,|
potatoes, red lentils. This is becoming one of my go-to recipes.
|Carrot, raisin, and lime salad to go with curry.|
|Blondies: bars made with brown sugar, chocolate chips,|
pecans, etc. Hard to get a clear photo!
This is a long-time favorite recipe.
What I feel in my kitchen...In my kitchen, I feel sad. A variety of food news is very depressing (other news too, but that's not for this post). I am very sad for the restaurant owners and for the food-service workers whose livelihoods are so endangered. The restaurant industry before the pandemic was 10% of the work force, so that's a lot of people suffering! I feel sad for the farms that supplied restaurants, I feel sad for the meat packing workers who have repeatedly been forced to work in dangerous contagion (which is why I'm not buying meat), and I feel sad for the workers on fishing boats who have been exposed or infected. I feel sad for the many people who are challenged to put food on the table.
In my kitchen, I feel gratitude, because we have enough to eat, plenty of choices, a variety of food delivery options, friends who bring us food, and many other things to be grateful for. But we are lonely in the kitchen for the friends and relatives who often visit and cook with us or bring food for potluck meals.
We had take-out once during the entire month, and definitely did not go to any restaurants, even to eat outdoors with tables widely separated. Too risky! We virtually never go to bars anyway, so this is a great time to keep staying away from them. A lesson to us: Michigan has the distinction of having suffered a record number of cases at Harper's Bar in Lansing:
"To date, 144 patrons – average age 21 – who visited Harper’s from June 12 to June 20 have tested positive for COVID-19, according to Ingham County Health Director Linda Vail, who said that eight-day span qualified as a 'super spreader' event. Another 44 people caught the virus from those patrons later on, she said." (link)
In sum: my kitchen this July is a lucky place, with summer produce, home-cooked food, Len's great bread and rolls, and our great fortune to have enough to eat. However, it's a sad place, especially thinking of the huge number of people whose lives have been turned upside down by job loss, by poverty, by children out of school, and by disease. I'm sharing this with Sherry at the blog Sherry's Pickings and with the other bloggers who also share their kitchen stories each month.
Blog post © 2020 mae sander for maefood dot blog spot.com