Eaters, it sometimes takes me years – YEARS – to recognize the simple solution to a vexing problem. It took an age for me to acknowledge and enact the plan that would allow me to not wake up to a sink teeming with dirty dishes every morning. And the answer wasn’t edible plates. I wish.
Recently I had what Oprah calls an “Aha” and what I call a “Why am I such a thickhead?” moment. In January of 2006, pregnant with my second daughter and at large in San Francisco, I had a fantastic salad. Transcendently flavorful. It was at the now defunct Firecracker restaurant and it consisted of nothing more exotic than leaf lettuce coated in a sesame vinaigrette and peppered with sesame seeds. I have pined for this plate of greenery for eight years. Enter the June issue of Bon Appetit magazine and the Canal House Simplest Asian Dressing.
As is often the case when a recipe makes me frisky with excitement, I can’t stop making it. I got so worked up grabbing a bite from the bowl that I bit my finger. I could care less if anyone in my house likes this salad. I love this salad, we have been reunited, and nothing and no one can keep us apart. We are like that couple in The Notebook.
If only more of life’s yearnings and conundrums were so easily, so elegantly dealt with. That pile of papers on my kitchen counter that I drape with a decorative tablecloth whenever we have company? Still burgeoning. That weird smell behind the couch (dust? water damage?)? Still weird. I am about six years out on those issues but for now, I can’t dwell. I need to spend some special time dressing my salad, and changing the dressing on my injured finger.