Paper Grape is about food…
It’s is about making food with love for your loved ones. It’s about food that joy-rides on all your senses; tasting, smelling, seeing, touching, listening. It’s about food where the recipe explains how to discern the rasping, head-banging sizzle of raw meat from the gentle, rippling sizzle of rendered meat. Food that makes you squint and purse your lips together, because that always helps when you’re gauging the ratio of one big bunch of chopped parsley to one small bunch of chopped mint. Or the smell of too much lemon versus the smell of too much salt. It’s about making the food that comes from recipes with too many adjectives and hyphenated words. Some of it is about comfort food that’s been passed by grandmothers and mothers with instructions like “Just a handful, dear. Then a squeeze … and mix it. Smell. Now taste. Shoo? Does it need more salt?”
I realize it sounds baffling and incomprehensible. But somehow these instructions make the recipes wholesome and heartfelt. Like they were written by Mother Earth herself and whispered lovingly into the ear of every mother that grew geraniums to every grandmother that turned them into juice. It means that to be able to replicate the dish you had to master senses like a craftsman hones his skill. It means that there seems to be no point in writing any of it down because no one cooks like that.
Well, that’s what I’m trying to do. And the first step is just to get it down on paper. So I’m taking an evolutionary step out of my notebooks with scrawly handwriting and leaping towards digital posterity.
Thank you for reading them.