Pretty much all of Western Canada right now is either on fire or the haze and smoke is affecting the environment in one way or another. There may be a temporary reprieve for a few hours a day here and there depending on the wind, but for the most part, breathing pretty much sucks.
I’m in the “If you have a preexisting medical condition” category. That means if I’m outside for more than a few hours at a time, I get worn out more than usual (which isn’t 100% on any given day). I get moody and irritable when I can’t do what my brain tells me at the best of times, but when I’m cooped up inside, I get more irritable than usual. And that affects my creativity.
I still think about food pretty much constantly. The strawberries and peas are amazing at this time of year and I’ve wanted to combine them more in sandwiches, but on one day when I cook something a little more complex, my physicality becomes more diminished the next day and I end up doing something less than what I want.
Is today’s sandwich good? Damn right it is. Do I have 8000 other ideas that I’d love to do? Of course I do. I get overwhelmed by what goes on in my head sometimes, but then I stop, breathe and think, “I can only do what’s possible today.”
People who talk in meme-like platitudes don’t generally have any real problems. Life is filled with moments of impossibilities. Those who transcend the mundane tend to just work themselves into an exhaustive stupor at the end of the day. They aren’t Superman.
Time for a grilled cheese sandwich. It’s comforting. The flavour combination is pure summer perfection. And it strips life’s annoying complexities into something simpler. Something child-like. Enjoy.
Strawberry Pea Fields Forever Grilled Cheese Sandwich
4 slices whole wheat sandwich bread
1/4 cup softened butter
50g/2 oz gruyere cheese, finely grated
25g/1 oz pecorino cheese, finely grated
1/2 cup snow peas, julienned
10-12 fresh strawberries, stems removed, thickly sliced
Preheat a nonstick pan or griddle over medium heat.
Spread the butter on the whole wheat sandwich bread slices. Place one piece of bread, buttered side down in the preheated pan. Sprinkle with half of the grated gruyere. Evenly spread the strawberry slices and julienned snow peas over the cheese. Sprinkle lightly with half of the grated pecorino.
Top with a slice of bread, buttered side up. Griddle for 3-4 minutes per side. Repeat with remaining ingredients. Serves 2.