Living in Maine sometimes as a Black woman can get lonely as hell. Yes, I do have some Black friends up here but truthfully everyone is so busy trying to survive that free time to just hang out is hard to come by. Which is why yesterday was a treat for me, I spent a good part of the day with one of my sista-friends, she is going through some life changes and as she put it she just needed to chill with someone who got it and that she didn’t need to be the Black ambassador with, believe me I know that feeling well.
Anyway whenever T & I get together, food always comes up since early this year we had a little tiff around her cooking me a birthday meal that I couldn’t eat because my stomach is sensitive as hell. Long story short she hooked a sista up with a southern style meal, fried chicken, collards greens, baked mac and cheese and potato salad. Sadly since my weight loss, too much grease causes a reaction within my stomach that can only be cured with a long visit to the porcelain throne.
So you know how it is, I was irritated that she cooked a meal I told her, I couldn’t eat and she was mad because well she thought a sista was being an ungrateful wench. However this is Maine and the pool of sistas who connect is small as hell, so we both got over it. But as sistas whenever we hang out food does come up, last night she brought her boys over and I had made pumpkin pie since mini-me wanted me to do something with all these pumpkins she has been collecting.
Now I don’t know about you but trying to cut a pumpkin up and turn it into something edible is really not that easy, I know because last year when I tried it after hacking that pumpkin open, the inside was stringy as hell and rather unpleasant. So not wanting to disappoint the little one, I opened a can of pureed pumpkin and used it to cook with and well I didn’t tell the little one. Thankfully she was 2 so she didn’t notice Mama’s subterfuge.
So yesterday when I made the pie, I did it while mini-me was at daycare and simply moved one of her pumpkins away, so she would think I used one to bake the pie with, now I know some of y’all are laughing. However when my girlfriend came over as I was taking the pie out the oven and she oohing over how great it smelled, I confessed that the pie was not really homemade. See, I didn’t make the crust, in fact when I make pies I rarely make the crust, instead I use the store bought ones since as a working Mama, time is at a premium.
While I was confessing to my girl that I cheated with both canned pumpkin and a store bought crust, she started laughing and told me “Black girl get real, of course that shit is homemade”… I love sista-friends we keep it real with each other. Now my girl, we cool but truth is she ain’t much of a cook outside of a few items (she does however throw down with her greens and sweet potato pie).
Yet once again today I found myself thinking about how much true cooking from scratch I do, see this morning I was at the store getting canned broth for the meal I was putting on for dinner tonight, chicken and barley cooked in the crock-pot. Its a simple recipe chicken, veggies, barley, seasonings and broth thrown in the crock-pot and cooked all day. By the time its done, its a simple yet tasty ass meal, everyone here likes it and sometimes I even make drop biscuits to go along, but I use Bisquick for the biscuits.
Now, with thrift and frugality being in vogue, there are many foodie blogs I visit where folks cook everything from scratch, I must admit I get a tad jealous yet while I like to cook, and for the most part do make things myself, things like broth from scratch are simply a pain in the ass to make. Yeah, I know take your chicken carcass and boil, boil, boil. I tried it and frankly it came out like shit and still didn’t net me enough broth plus I rarely eat whole chickens. Shit, I think last Thanksgivings turkey carcass is still in my deep freezer since I meant to use that to make broth but 11 months never got around to it.
In the end, I guess the question is does it really matter if when cooking you use a few aids to speed up the process? I would like to say no, though I know true foodies would say my shit is not homemade. So what about y’all, any regular readers who cook everything from scratch? If you do, please tell me how you make time for it.
Anyway its lunch time here, today’s lunch is indeed homemade, Maine lobster and salad. Not only homemade but all the food is local. Time to get my eat on, so I can get back to work.