And as much as I love recipes and will pour over them for hours, I think there are sometimes when we need to put the cook book down, and simple walk around our kitchen cabinets (& garden, if you have one). What do you want to eat? What do you have? What can you create from what you have been given that will satisfy the soul of your belly? This is when you can have fun. There is freedom and creativity when you put down the book and give yourself permission to create something from what others thought was nothing. It empowers you know that you yourself can pair simple things, and enjoy the quality, taste, character, texture, purpose, and mission of the food you are eating.
I have recently started reading "An Everlasting Meal" by Tamar Adler, and it is utterly beautiful. Her poetry regarding food is breathtaking, and she gives food a movement, a personality, and a reason for being the way it is. She writes as though she were standing in your kitchen, not telling you what to do, but showing you the whys of certain foods, as well as efficient hows. How to make the most of every ingredient, because not one part is there for naught. She is a beast with words, and knows how to make them work for her in such a way that I can comprehend exactly what she means, and the tone and mood in which it was written. Few can do that, even fewer can do it when regarding and writing about food. As a food writer, I know the list of designated "foodie adjectives" is quite short, so that makes me admire her all the more. Pick it up and read it; you will know food and yourself a little better.
Here are a few simple dishes I have lived off of lately . . .
These are the sort of things that make you feel good about life. All of this simple food is what I happen to have on hand at the time. I don't want to give the impression that I eat overly complicated, 2-hour long prep time meals three times a day, because I don't, and don't forsee myself getting to that spot in life. Adler talks about preparing meals from the tails of other meals, meaning using what you have, and what you didn't use from the last meal, incorporating it into your next meal. Do that, and don't be afraid to enjoy something so much that you repeat the meal.
I haven't gone grocery shopping in a while because I'm challenging myself to be resourceful. Sometimes it's great, sometimes I wish I would've gone to the store. But I'm learning. We all are, and that is part of the beauty of it. Challenge yourself to enjoy the simplicity, beauty, & quality of the food around you. There are alluring meals waiting to be discovered.