Saturday, June 05, 2010

Saturday in the kitchen

The groceries are put away, the counters are cleared and ready for action. I firmly tie an apron around my waist, lay out the ingredients for tomato sauce and begin to chop.

While Sarah Vaughn and Rosemary Clooney croon songs of unrequited love, I slide minced onions and garlic into hot olive oil, mix ground sausage and ground beef into meatballs, and open can after can of crushed tomatoes.

From the kitchen bay windows, gray skies and rain-laden breezes help set the mood. It is an "inside" kind of afternoon; the kind of afternoon that soothes. If I close my eyes, I can imagine myself in my grandmother's apartment over forty years ago.

Instead of in the kitchen, I would be lounging on her plaid couch with my feet on the curious coffee table shaped like a cobbler's workbench. Coffee nips, her favorite candy, would be in the built-in ashtray. She would be the one who was busy in her small kitchen, confidently stirring, tasting, adjusting spices, and washing dishes as she went along.

Instead of music streaming from Pandora on my laptop, the piece of furniture called a stereo would be humming with similar tunes. Maybe some Sinatra, too.

Whatever goodness was simmering in Gruna's pot, it would be shared with our family, a friend, a neighbor, or her co-workers. It only seems proper for me to do the very same.


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