WFMAD 3: Cooking

I have put a bowl of Texmati Rice and water in the microwave to cook. Rice is one of the foods that always soothes and comforts my soul. I should say good rice actually. Give me fragrant Basmati, Texmati, or Jasmine rice.

Rice takes me back to some wonderful meals in Austin, where I first learned the mysteries of rices other than plain old white long grain. That’s where my affair with Texmati began. Just the smell of the open rice cannister makes me smile.

Perhaps it’s the actual fragrance of the rice. I think, though, it’s actually the meals that rice calls up for me. We have a handful of family favorites—hamburger gravy and rice, jiffy chicken casserole, and “rice with too much rice.” None of the meals are the stuff of great chefs. They’re all basic, utilitarian meals, but all of them are things my sisters and brother and I love.

I’ve had far more complex meals, where rice was the base or the highlight. Even if I could make those meals, I’m not sure they’d ever rival the family favorites. There’s nothing in the world that can compare to some chicken broth-soaked rice with a touch of parsley and a small pat of butter.

The microwave is still humming along. Maybe I should sneak over and check its progress again. I know, I know. I need to write. I should be able to sit here and concentrate. I know. But the aroma. I know it’s got to be nearly done. It couldn’t smell like this if it weren’t time for me to pile some in my bowl. How can it take so long? Surely it’s almost ready. One little peek can’t hurt, can it?


WFMAD stands for “Writing for Fifteen Minutes a Day.” Author Laurie Halse Anderson has declared August as the 2009 Write Fifteen Minutes A Day Challenge Month. Each day she posts some writing advice, some inspiration, and a prompt to get the writing flowing. For more information, see her blog.