“86” clothes: What we gain when we take everything off

“86” clothes: What we gain when we take everything off

It was a feeling from day one, indescribable in a single word. So many different words came instead; words that came and come to mind looking into wandering eyes with wondering eyes like hers. “I want something to eat. And if there isn’t anything leftover when we’re finished, we’ll simply make more.” When things were still withheld and unsteady. When our imaginations ran wild and unchecked. When tension that could be cut with a knife was used to make Japanese udon noodles from scratch instead, and prepare dishes we knew would taste both different and the same, familiar and new, every time we sat down to eat. When words fail it is fingers and toes, breathlessness and beating hearts, inexhaustible passion and heat of the kitchen that reminds us why we stand so close to each other. Why we fall asleep intertwined, all knees and cheeks and sweet words left on the pillow. Because feeling and flavor are inextricably linked. Some people (many people, other people) don’t need much to be happy. They don’t need decadent meals, or the time spent over stoves and ovens. They don’t appreciate the plates so well composed that they beg to play the notes of Vivaldi, Mozart, Beethoven, Liszt. So beautiful they could be placed on the wall next to Van Gogh, Dali, Renoir. We do.   A recipe for candied orange peel Ingredients: 2ea large oranges, 1/4in cut off top & bottom 4 cups sugar, in 4 different cups 3 cups water   Directions: Cut the peel of each orange vertically into 4 pieces Remove each section and cut into segments 1/4in thick Cook...
Apple sweet, coffee dark & bitter

Apple sweet, coffee dark & bitter

The Asian markets along University Avenue have anything and everything you could ever want to buy: They have the things that Minnesota’s Scandinavian, Irish, and Eastern European base will recognize, and then everything else brought from the far Eastern Asian countries along the Mekong River: Salted duck eggs, fresh quail eggs, pickled chicken eggs, Thai basil, live clams and frogs. Noodles – a wall of noodles. Hot sauces made from red chili. Coffee with sweet milk. It’s a wonderful thing, especially those who enjoy expanding their knowledge of food and their palate. A resource for everyone. It was not long ago that a farmer grandfather from Monticello looked at sushi with confused and disapproving eyes. Fried Chinese was acceptable, but, what in the hell do we need all these other things for? And he wasn’t necessarily wrong – he wasn’t wrong in the sense that regional authenticities deserve as much attention as all the new things flooding our grocery markets and restaurants. We forgot long, long ago what the Native Americans, the First Nation, indigenous populations were eating here before Europeans arrived. And now we have all of those foods, plus every single other food that has been added since then. It’s become quite crowded, noisy even, and if you don’t know how to navigate this new and exciting and ever-changing world of food; how to keep up and how to appreciate the beauty of diversity in diet, you’re going to retreat into the things you know – the things on which you were raised. Familiar things. Things that make you happy. Like my grandfather did. And it’s never really going...