not a book, Surviving the 'Rona

Calming cooking

It’s been ten really quite stressful days hasn’t it? I mean I’ve been working in newsrooms for more than a decade at this point and I don’t really remember anything quite like it – even 2011 which had the Arab Spring, the Fukushima nuclear disaster and Utoya didn’t feel quite like this. I’ve spoken before about the fact that over the course of the pandemic I’ve retreated into rereading old favourites and sticking mostly to romance and mystery for new books, but away from reading, the other thing that I do to calm down is cooking. I put on an audiobook or a podcast and zone out while I make something nice to eat for dinner.

The picture today is of the oven cooked paella from Roasting Tin Around the World, which is one of our regular Saturday night meals (and the leftovers are then the Monday night meal). Our pattern is to cool something fancy/complicated on Saturday and Sunday which will give leftover vets for Monday and Tuesday and then we have a bunch of recipes we rotate through on weeknights, depending on what the butcher has at the weekend, which veg the supermarket has and what is in the freezer.

The pandemic has meant that I’ve been at home to cook in the evenings an awful lot more than I used to be and that means my repertoire of recipes has increased somewhat. I keep meaning to write a post about my favourite recipe books but never really getting that far with it! That’s probably because most of my favourites come from the same author – Rukmini Iyer and her Roasting Tin series – because I like the process of chopping things up but I’m not as big a fan of having to stand over the stove the whole time and stir! I have a page in my journal each month where I keep track of what we’ve eaten in the evening – and the list is starting to get a little repetitive. So as I find it quite hard to pick recipe books without flicking through them, I think a trip to a bookstore is going to be in order soon!

If you have any recommendations for books – or even your favourite (simple) week night dinner recipes – please put them in the comments. I’m on a few cookery email lists but find them a little bit and miss so I’d you have a really good one to recommend, I’m very interested!

Stay safe everyone.

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