Back to school can mean many things to different people. For me, a large part of it is getting my cooking life back to normal by organizing my cooking schedule. Although I cook with my friends a lot in the summer, it’s more spontaneous, when varied schedules may just happen to overlap. But now, at the beginning of the school year, when life is primarily about shuttling my three kids to and from activities, Cooking With Friends becomes something a whole lot different.
Cooking with friends is my lifejacket. It’s a way for me to get healthy dinners (breakfast and even lunches) made in a stress-free, enjoyable and productive way. It’s an opportunity to be with friends, while also freeing up precious time later in the day when the kids need me most, for homework questions or for whatever need for emotional support the day brings.
So, I am excited to open my calendar today, to begin to make my phone calls and send e-mail messages to friends scheduling times we can cook together. My empty freezer is starving to be filled! Right off the bat, I know I want to make a rich corn stock (for Thanksgiving) with the sweet and delicious Jersey corn that still overflows at the farm stands; dumplings and empanadas for quick and healthful dinners and lunches; homemade waffles and pancakes, and another big batch of homemade tomato sauce. That’s just a start for the first two weeks of back to school and then I’ll move on to foods with apples, pumpkins and squash.
I can’t wait to fill my schedule with cooking dates and strongly urge you to do the same.