My 100th post on What I'm Cooking Now came and went without my even realizing it. Today I posted my 125th entry. I never thought that nearly two years later, I'd still be blogging about my meals and my life, and I certainly never thought that anyone would be interested in reading these posts!
I'm a foodie. I admit it. I'm a foodie. But what is a foodie, really? I certainly love to cook and I love to eat, and I love to feed my family and friends. But is that the definition of a foodie? I like to try new things and am a pretty adventurous eater, but is that what makes a foodie? I've been called a bit of a food snob, and although it stung a little, I recognized the truth of it insofar as I prefer food made from scratch rather than opening boxes and cans. I like fresh food. I like ethnic food. I like authentic food. I don't like highly processed and prepared foods - I like fresh, homemade food. It tastes better and has more nutrition. So yes, I'll cop to the food snob jibe. I have a pretty decent palate and can usually come close to replicating foods I enjoy elsewhere when I get back to my own kitchen, but is that a foodie?
I don't know.... None of these things, and all of these things go into making a foodie, I guess.
When I started this blog, it was in response to a few newly Orthodox mothers who asked me for advice regarding what to cook during Great Lent. After Lent, I continued to post because I realized that I was setting down stories and recipes for my daughter. Every once in a while, I print the posts and put them in a binder for her, and she now has a wonderful family cookbook, lovingly created for her by her mother, with memories of her grandmother and greatgrandmother and family stories, as well as recipes. I like knowing that I'm passing on my family's history in this way. For my mutt of a daughter (1/4 Lebanese, 1/4 Syrian, 1/4 Italian, 1/4 Acadian), this is one way of passing on our culture and history to her.
I'm a second generation Italian American and second generation Acadian. I'm far removed from my ethnic roots. I've never been to Italy, but I have been to the Acadian family homestead in New Brunswick. I don't speak Italian, and at my best, I spoke French at the level of about a 4 or 5 year old. I don't know the songs or the dances. What else can I pass on to my child, other than the food and the culinary traditions? How else will she know where she came from?
An online friend contacted me just a week or two ago, and said that she is half Italian, like me, but her mother died very young and she has lost touch with her mother's family, and as such, she has no Italian recipes. My first thought was how sad to not have your mother there with you, what an unfillable hole the loss of your mother is, but my second thought was what a loss it would be to my life if I didn't have some sort of cultural ethnic underpinnings.
Yes, I know that America used to be a melting pot and now its a salad bowl. And yes indeed, I am a patriotic American first and foremost. But I wouldn't trade my pizza gaina or tourtiere for anything.
I guess that's what really makes me a foodie.
So, 125 posts later, I thank all my readers for bearing with me. I intend to keep posting, God willing!