Cara’s Shopping Bag: Summer Squash, Parmesan, Onion, Kohlrabi
Phoebe’s Shopping Bag: Tomato, Avocado, Cilantro, Cucumber
It’s been a long time coming, but finally, we have a banner. Quite frankly, we’ve been a little Goldilocks about the whole thing. Over the last six months we’ve tossed around many ideas and design iterations, some good, some bad, but in the end, not one until now, felt just right. For this beautiful, final version, we have to thank Tom (his website is TypeShapeColor) for being patient with our indecision, and offering the endless options and creativity that fueled it.
In the spirit of our new imagery, we got to thinking about the contents of our shopping bags—plastic, paper, or tote. In a lot of ways, our culinary livelihood as quarter-life cooks is defined and confined by the contents of those bags. Our recipes begin with what we buy, and then they evolve through an endless debate on how to use up fresh produce and supplement enough stock pantry items so that our weekly ingredients fit both within our bag and our budgets.
Resourceful strategies aside, what we choose for our bag is mainly a product of our individual tastes. Its contents say a lot about who we are as cooks, revealing many idiosyncrasies. Cara might come home with blueberries, veggie sausage, and kohlrabi, Phoebe with basil, Merguez, and cherry tomatoes. While you’ll never find meat in one, you just as rarely find fruit in the other. Our pantries and our fridges do sometimes contain similar ingredients, but it’s what we use to spice up those essentials that leads to two different, if equally delicious, approaches.
Yet sometimes, it’s a breath of fresh air to step into someone else’s kitchen and, in doing so, step away from the staples of our shopping bags and our pantries. Which is why we’ll be asking, oh so kindly, for a little assistance from all of you out there. Please open your shopping bags to us and share three or four fresh ingredients you will be working with this week. We will then, in turn, adopt some of your shopping bags (two each) to our kitchens, cooking your ingredients in our style. We’ll post the resulting recipes at the end of next week. Of course, we need to work through ours first, so please see our lists above and stay tuned for what’s been happening to them in our kitchens during these next few days.
There is no vegetable too obscure (hello, kohlrabi?) or animal part too gnarly, though if it’s meat at all, Cara is likely to take a pass. But, that said, we’d prefer not to be appalled or nauseated by what you’ve bought, so please, unless you would actually like to try tomatoes stuffed with gummy bears, be honest about your recent market finds—or any hypothetical combination you would like to pick up if only there existed the right recipe out there to guide you.
Though we’ll be the ones in the kitchen, this time you supply the creativity. We so look forward to what you come home with.
From our kitchen, where it all begins with a bag, to yours,
Phoebe and Cara, THE QUARTER-LIFE COOKS