October 21, 2017

Everyday Gourmet: Hunger gains

By Kim Dannies

Hunger gains
Thanks to a weird bug last week, I lost my appetite for six days. While I was able to go about my routine, I had no interest whatsoever in food. This has never happened to me before. For someone who thinks about food pretty much all the time, it was a very odd experience. Like a cheerleader on Quaaludes, I simply didn’t give a fig about the dinner rah-rah, or even who else might be hungry.

My exile to the “eat to live” camp was surreal, but while there I gained a huge appreciation for folks who are ambivalent, even indifferent, when it comes to mealtime. We’re not all cooks by choice, but we’re all eaters by necessity. It takes a tremendous amount of focus and energy to crank out decent meals on a regular basis. To have to do that with the enthusiasm of a brick must be a special kind of kitchen hell.

Now I see why take-out is so very beloved, and I get why meal replacement products like Soylent (a cross between cream of wheat and Metamucil) are gaining traction. My hubby cooked me a simple bowl of noodles and butter, and this made me very content. I started to think about the tremendous amount of time, money and effort I could redirect if my appetite decamped for good. I fantasized about brokering peace in the Middle East, curing cancer, maybe even finishing my novel—then my fever broke and I was at Trader Joe’s.

I’ll tell you this: I will never again judge someone else’s food habits, choices or motivations. Fueling is a very individual matter. We may know better and hope for more on our menus, but we are all doing the best we can in this moment.

Simple Farro Salad

Farro, a whole grain that cooks up like pasta, has a nutty nutritional bang. Eaten simply with butter and salt, there is nothing finer. It loves just about any added veggie, cheese, nut, herb or protein. Dress with a store brand vinaigrette.

Boil 2 cups of farro for 20-25 minutes; taste for doneness. Strain. Eat warm, or scatter farro on a cookie sheet to dry for 20 minutes. This will keep it from clumping if you are making a cold salad.

Kim Dannies is a graduate of La Varenne Cooking School in France.  She lives in Williston with her husband, Jeff; they have three twenty-something daughters who come and go. For archived Everyday Gourmet columns go to kimdannies.com.


  1. intervalefoodhub.com.Thanks for mentioning the Intervale Food Hub, Jake!

    The Intervale Food Hub partners with The EDGE Sports & Fitness in Williston and Essex to deliver local food subscriptions year-round.

    We are just about to start deliveries to The EDGE for our upcoming Fall/Winter season. If anyone is interested in participating, you can learn more at http://www.intervalefoodhub.com.

    Kendall Frost
    Intervale Food Hub Marketing Manager

Speak Your Mind