There are some days when I feel like I have no idea what I’m doing. I feel overwhelmed and spread too thin between work (which is so busy lately), side projects, writing this blog, trying to read blogs… I feel behind and that’s hard for me.
And then I go into my kitchen and cook or bake, and somehow the world feels right again.
We live in a world that’s filled with intangible goods, and getting myself covered in flour, losing myself to the rhythmic sounds of chopping, focusing all my senses on something physical I’m creating feels amazing.
I’m drawn to doing things from scratch. I don’t have my own plot of land to grow fruits and vegetables, but I can buy strawberries and make jam, or take those vanilla beans and turn them into a heavenly vanilla extract. I have to start somewhere, and starting with those basic flavors and ingredients makes me appreciate the finished product even more later.
How do you right your world when it feel a bit upside down?
For homemade vanilla extract: Split one vanilla bean and scrape the seeds into a 1-cup jar with lid. Toss the vanilla bean in there too. Heat 3/4 cup of vodka on the stove until it boils. Watch it — vodka disappears fast when you’re heating it. Pour into jar and let it cool to room temperature. Screw the lid on and store on the shelf for a week, shaking it once a day. In seven days, you’ll have vanilla extract you can boast that you’ve made yourself.