Ah! Comfort Me with Marinara and MacaroniMain Course / September 21, 2013
When I was young, and recovering from the flu, my mom would always make me a fried egg on toast, covered with hot milk. It was the signal that I was going to live after all, and coating a healing digestive system with eggs, bread and milk meant that I would be back outside playing in no time. I remember the droplets of butter floating on top of, and the beautiful saltiness of a perfectly cooked over easy egg. As I scooped a bite, a lovely piece of milky white bread would droop off the spoon, catching a cascade of yellow yumminess and dripping it onto my chin. It was the ultimate comfort food.
Since then, I have a lot of foods that are like a cocoon for the tongue. I would surmise that your definition of comfort food does is similar, and when the world overwhelms you, like a Friday afternoon that should have been a day of skidding into the weekend instead of laying rubber in ever increasing smoking circles, I REACH FOR SOMETHING FAMILIAR.
If you’ve read any of my previous narratives, its a sure bet that I had no idea what I would make as I took off my shoes and entered the kitchen. As the word “pasta” entered my mind, I reached for macaroni, and gazed at it as though I was flipping the ‘on’ switch and expected it to begin talking to me.
It did. It said, “cover me in tomato-y and tangy goodness; and don’t forget to add the cheese.”
Like that was something I’d forget.
Anyway, assembling the basics for a simple marinara, and grabbing a bottle of Newman’s Own Fire Roasted and Garlic Pasta Sauce (I can’t wait ALL day to be comforted!) I set out to coax the evening into appearing more gently than the day did, and began shutting out the world with a pan, a spoon, and a little mirapoix.
By the time I was finished my kitchen was smelling like rosemary and wine, with the earthy and warm aroma of al dente pasta coating the high notes of onion and garlic. A mound of grated fresh Parmesan cheese was next to the fresh Italian parsley I had rough cut, and all of it was waiting for me like your first love and a sloppy, milk covered smile.
Don’t forget to say, “mmmmmm!!”