Why the raised eyebrows? Yes, I still accept food-stuffed care packages (via Fed Ex and U.S. Postal Service) and care “coolers” (yes, coolers) from my mother thanks to my uncle, a.k.a. “Road Warrior”, who does the 14, 16, 18…whatever-hour drive from New York to the southern branch of La Familia.
“Reds” (my mother) is a kitchen dynamo. Full stop. End of story. That woman can whip up magic on the stove, in the oven, on the grill — you name it, she does it — and from scratch. She’s a West Indian Mother in the true sense of the title. If you’re from the Caribbean — the “islands” — you know what I mean. My aunt — her sister — thinks all the kitchen activity she does is craziness. Me: I think it is totally normal. Now, I live in the state where the Governor is dating television’s Semi Home-Made star, but that isn’t and wouldn’t work for her. No Sir-reee, Bob. I never knew pancake mix existed in a box until I came to this country. Truth.
A month ago, Reds sent a care cooler with Road Warrior. In it were all completely prepared meals — cooked, packaged, labeled (with titles such as, “New Year’s Prosperity”), frozen (for the ride), and ready for the Brainy Pint Sizer freezer. Some of the meals were dinners, others breakfasts. Oh, she had it covered. Kids, don’t try this at home. You’re talking about a true professional. If you’re not doing this, you’re not in the big leagues, you’re an amateur. Reds’ Restaurant allows me to open the freezer — hmmm, what’s on the menu for dinner tonight? — make a selection, place in the refrigerator or on the counter, and then as soon as it’s defrosted, into the microwave it goes (or heated on the stove — whatever works).
Now, I don’t what you to think for one minute that I don’t know how to cook. Hey, I have her genes! Not only do I know how cook, I also know how to bake, and grill. However, I’m no Reds. Since I like to eat, I need to know how to cook. And let me say this: No one has died or been rushed to the emergency room from eating my food — ever.
So, tonight on the menu: Fish with vegetables. Sounds simple, but trust me, it wasn’t. It was so good!
Maybe some time ago when I said to Reds during one of our telephone calls, “Don’t send me any food,” after looking in my freezer and seeing it jam-packed with plastic containers, I was overwhelmed. Wouldn’t you be if you couldn’t even find room to add a pint of Haagen Dazs or Ciao Bella gelato or sorbet?
Trust me. I didn’t mean it.
But seriously, how old is too old before you should no longer accept food shipped from your mother?
P.S. The last food delivery didn’t contain brownies, cookies and other treats. I shouldn’t be eating that crap (as the Road Warrior would say) anyway, but if I spread out the ingestion over time, it’s not 10,000 calories at once. Thank God. My thighs can’t take much more.
P.P.S. The cooler is set to return to the south soon. Hopefully, it will be back with Reds’ kitchen creations. Lord knows, I may not make it to the supermarket and Costco to do the “big” shopping before then, so I’m going to need food.