For lunch on Easter Sunday, I had a handful of cashews, two cinnamon Pop-Tarts, a frosted oatmeal cookie and part of a hard-boiled egg. I only had part of the egg because I can never get the shell off without also removing about half the white. (In case you’re wondering, my wife prepared a large and delicious evening dinner for the family, so I was off the hook for supper.)
I know my diet needs some serious help. I do pretty good with fruits, but I don’t eat nearly enough vegetables. I like to eat good food, but I don’t know how to prepare it.
I’ve decided it’s time to change this. Don’t misunderstand me. I very much doubt I’ll ever become a chef. I do need to eat better, and better-for-me, food. But don’t wait by your phone for an invitation to come over and sample my baked Alaska.
But how to start?
I decided to start where I always do when I want to learn something new — at the library. Except that I made this determination on Easter Sunday and the library was closed.
I drove to the nearest Barnes & Noble and wandered the shelves looking for the cooking section. When I found it, I was surprised to find it was the largest section in the store, except for fiction. There were cookbooks there larger than my unabridged dictionary. If I ever decided to do the “Julie & Julia” thing with one of them, I should have started when I was seven.
The first book I spotted was Veganomicon: The Ultimate Vegan Cookbook. I’ve never been quite sure what a “vegan” is. I think it sounds like a native of planet Venus.
Then I saw The Physiology of Taste: Or Meditations on Transcendental Gastronomy. I’m fairly sure I don’t want to know that much about food.
How to Eat was next. I’ve got that one covered.
Slow Cooker Winning Recipes? Forget it. Even fast food takes too long to prepare.
How about Anyone Can Cook? That’s a false claim. While the jury might still be out regarding me, I have definitely sampled food prepared by people who cannot cook.
Next I spotted How to Break an Egg. That was tempting, in light of my experience at lunch, but I want to know how to do more than just break eggs.
The Hooters’ Cookbook. They’re kidding, right? It’s got to be a joke. I’ve never been to a Hooters, and I know very little about their menu, but I’d be surprised to discover that anyone went there for the food. And would I have to wear those tiny orange shorts when I cooked?
Mastering Cheese? The Magic of Peanut Butter? The Fondue Bible? Hello, Cupcake? Rustic Fruit Desserts? The Classic Zucchini Cookbook? They all seem a tad bit specialized for my purposes. But at least I now know how to spell “zucchini.”
There was 101 Things To Do with a Blender. Don’t titles like that usually include the word “must” and end with “before you die”?
My favorite was Allergy-Free Desserts. I thought that was pretty funny. As far as I know, it’s people who have allergies. Food has allergens. I very much want to avoid a chocolate cake that sneezes on me.
By now you’ve probably figured out how this all ended. I bought Cooking Basics for Dummies. Then I stopped on the way home and bought a case of Diet Pepsi, a bar of dark chocolate and a package of Kellogg’s new Cinnabon Snack Bars. I’m on my way!