26 June 2011

The First Pancake

Gay Pride, Christopher Street
(This weekend is Gay Pride Weekend in New York, and, in celebration of equal rights for gay couples in New York, I've decided to change the usual food picture on top to something more appropriate.)
It’s been more than a year since I wrote something for the blog, and I’ve missed so many things: the blog’s anniversary, the requisite New Year’s and birthday posts, and celebrating the successes of many people I’ve met through this tiny corner of the blogaverse. But the last 365 days have given way to more important, life-altering milestones; so many firsts, which just like the excited parent with a camcorder I’ve wanted to write about, but hadn’t, because I was too embarrassed or because it was too personal (shocking, I know, that I wouldn’t share it anyway).

I fell in love for the first time last year. With it was my first date (at the overripe, blackened banana age of 28), my first kiss (the details of which are too mind-blowing to be expressed with my puny words, but you know someday I’ll try), and while no labels were being thrown around, the first guy I would call my boyfriend, or at the very least would have wanted to, had my first relationship not ended. It was devastating, and friends from all over the world physically and in writing rushed to comfort me, their friend in arrested development, well-meaning but utterly confusing. “Chalk it up to experience,” “You weren’t in love- it was just your first,” “There’ll be better ones, you just don’t know it yet.”

Crepes (Making)
The first love is a paradoxical thing. It is at the same time, by virtue of its ordinal, undeniably important, but it’s also what trivializes it. I suppose people go for the former when it ends well and the latter when it falls apart, but even as a paradox, I think everyone agrees with the former. I mean, don’t you remember your first?

As with most earth-shattering events, soon after the first date I gave Duncan a call. Looking back I’m smirking now at the things he warned me about- he could see I was completely blown away and told me, realistically, that most first relationships don’t pan out and I should keep that in mind as I proceed (cautiously). I said that while it’s true that most people throw out the first pancake of the cooking, couldn’t you love the pancake anyway? Ripped, pale, thick in places, burned, distorted: not for consumption by the guests, but the wise chef knows that even an imperfect crepe has its value (and can even be his personal, delicious treat). And then there are those uncommon chefs who get the pancake perfectly the first time. I don’t know if that was me, but no matter what the outcome, I can say that I gave my whole heart to it. I don’t see how anyone couldn’t, the way I felt.

I took note of my firsts, but the places and times we shared weren’t important because of the number, but the person with whom I shared them. Nothing trivial about that.

Dulce de Leche Crepes
You know I love my recipes, but for this time, there’s nothing new (I mean, just look at that awful pic). The crepe recipe is from Pierre Herme and written out in this old post on Crepes, then filled with jarred Dulce de Leche and folded in the hot pan so that the filling gets all warm and melty. SO good.

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