There is a great thread asking how people first realized they were chowhounds. I don't think I posted on it because I can't remember a time when I haven't known. But this week like an older married couple might recommit and take their wedding vows again it felt like I took my chow vow again. It feels good sometimes to reminded how much food means to me. The thing that I have been dreading for years finally happened, my furnace died. It's not exactly balmy here in the northeast so I ran out to Costco to get a couple of space heaters to get through the cold nights. While I was there I grabbed a rotisserie chicken. I took the chicken out of the plastic container, chopped up the twine so some poor critter doesn't kill itself on it, and scraped the goop out the bottom of the container. I sauteed up some mushrooms in butter and the chicken drippings I'd scraped, pillaged the white meat from the chicken, and with some leftover chicken broth I just happened to have in the fridge and some whole milk I whipped up some creamed chicken on toast lickety split! Both my grandmothers and my mom loved this dish and made it often. They called it chicken ala king and added hard boiled egg slices and bits of pimento and pepper but I prefer just the chicken and mushrooms in a rich creamy broth. But I didn't forget the nutmeg. Mom always sprinkled a bit of nutmeg in the sauce at the last minute. I hadn't made this dish in forever and it was so good. All the fear and worry about how I'm going to come up with the money to replace my furnace just melted away after a bite or two. It was like getting a hug from both my grandmothers and my mom. Yup I'm a chowhound to the very core. Anyone else have a defining chowhound moment recently?
For me, it wasn't a dish or recipe, but the realization in the past couple of years that I was choosing to eat in rather than dine out almost all the time because the quality and integrity of the foods I buy is so much better (grass fed, wild, organic mostly) to start with and that I'd learned to cook most things as well as or better than restaurants do.
I'm not anywhere close to being chef like in difficulty, let that sound like boasting, I'm just a pretty good home cook.