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From Scratch

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Uche wanted a sandwich. But Uche, being Uche, could not do things simply. She gathered flour, salt, yeast, olive oil and water. She got the milk and her cheese-making kit. It was becoming a habit, perhaps even a problem. She was not even sure of her motivations. Maybe it was for health reasons. Perhaps something in her yearned for the simple life. Whatever it was, every meal she had eaten for the last few months had been made by her own hands from scratch.

Once she put the bread in the oven, she leaned against the counter and cast her mind back to months earlier. Suddenly, she remembered. She had been watching a cookery show on TV. It was a show about flavours. Over several episodes, the chef had discussed the nature and types of flavours. In each episode, she had cooked a number of recipes to demonstrate her points. Uche’s eyes had been opened to the true wonder of food.

Now eating anything that she had not intentionally and lovingly crafted with her own hands felt irreverent. It had started with simple dishes, but they soon become more complex. Uche had only learnt bread-making and cheese-making in the previous month. Creating a meal from its most fundamental components, and using techniques to procure textures and flavours gave her an almost transcendental feeling. She was creating art and beauty. The sandwich fully constructed before her, Uche lifted it up, admired it, took a bite and felt euphoria.

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