Confession. I've never been much of a cook. There have been short bursts of kitchen related activity (like back when I was living with an exboyfriend or two). But I've never cooked just for me, despite having lived on my own for some 10 years or so. Up until recently that is.
Since switching to a largely plant based diet and becoming a smoothie/juice making machine, I spend a lot of time making food (and a mess) in my kitchen. I still wouldn't classify myself as any sort of chef (not even a novice one). But I have managed to find some recipes that I love and even to pull together my own creations.
The eats section of this blog contains photos of many of these efforts. I have genuinely found that eating a clean, organic, vegan(ish) diet is not just good stuff - it's truly excellent stuff. As a result, I have little to no desire to indulge in anything processed, refined or full of nasties. I am all about it.
One dish that I have made repetedly this winter is the Crazy Sexy Bean Chili featured on kriscarr.com. It's even become a topic of conversation amongst my friends in a longing for it kind of way. Imagine me cooking something that is longed for? Who would have thought it?!
This week, my dear friends Emsy asked me to cook my (I mean Kris's) famous chili for her for dinner. We then came up with the novel idea of cooking it together instead. Part cooking lesson part feast. Emsy was so excited about our plans she messaged me about 5 times in the lead up.
We cooked the chili and it was delicious. But that's not what was special. Rather, It was the experience of cooking it together. We chatted, laughed, chopped and stirred. At the end of all that we sat back, drank some wine and ate a delicous meal. Made with lots of love.
Next time you are planning a night with a friend, consider the cooking dinner together style date. Find a recipe you're both excited about. Plan the shop in advance, share the responsibilities and leverage the dual pantries on offer. Then go and get messsy in the kitchen together. I promise you will enjoy so much more than the food.
By the way, the day after I got a beautiful message from Emma. It was both to thank me and to tell me how excited she was that she was about to eat some of the left over chili for lunch. Success.