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You Can Emerge as Slowly as You Like

  • June 10, 2021

What’s on your menu these days? I’ve found returning to restaurants exciting and also a bit of a shock to the system. After many months subsisting on home-cooked soups and sourdough, I’ve become unaccustomed to the variety and richness of restaurant offerings and find myself craving simplicity, recipes whose ingredients are known to me, that I’ve titrated to my liking. After a heavenly and slightly overwhelming meal out last weekend, I was glad to return home to Eric Kim’s “Three Ways to a Better Chicken Breast”: “The trick to keeping breast meat tender and juicy is to alter its anatomy completely,” he writes. Fascinating! If you need me, I’ll be in the kitchen, dry-brining and pineapple-marinating.

On more than one recent excursion — while genuinely enjoying myself at the beach, or cycling to meet friends for brunch — I’ve been surprised to find myself daydreaming about my apartment. My joy at being out and about isn’t tempered exactly, but rather complemented by a deep appreciation for the safety and comfort I’ve gotten so well acquainted with at home. I have to remind myself: Just because, in many places, we can go out more, see more people and do more things, that doesn’t mean we have to. It’s OK to stay home and cook chicken instead of packing your schedule to make up for what may feel like lost time.

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