Awakening the Appetite

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            Nothing tastes particularly good.  Unmemorable food experiences from the past week blur in my mind with me numbly putting hand to mouth, chewing, swallowing, and walking away.  My two breakfast eggs were eaten, more like inserted into my mouth, while dressing for work.  They were followed by multi-vitamins, which tasted no different from the eggs. My blasé lunch salad was eaten on my feet while supervising children.  Salad eaten- back to work.  Dinner with Allan has consisted of a couple of elemental ingredients:  bread/ham or bread/eggs and when the bread ran out, and our shop was closed for the day, we were saved by some take away foods from our charcuterie
I can’t decide what to eat.  I think I’m partially suffering from decision fatigue, written about by my wise counsel Kaye Syrah.  With the start of school, my creative juices are just about tapped out by the time I get home.  Mostly though, I know that I’m lovesick.  Love is so surprisingly visceral and when our boys left for the US on Tuesday, back to university, the oxygen left our house and an actual physical ache overcame my body, like the way you feel for several days after you’ve had the flu:  tender, tired, no appetite. 
We went to the market this morning because we need food.  We got basics:  carrots, zucchini, onions.  The produce looked fine, but didn’t really give me any thoughts.  Then I tracked back to the fresh herb sellers I had passed at the entrance.  I stood for a moment and let the mint and dill and cilantro smells actually enter my senses and my memory.  
Then I knew what I wanted:  Ranch Dressing.  Yep.  But Ranch Dressing is a gateway food and it can lead to salad, and baked potatoes, and steak, and some Latin inspired foods, too.  Then I’m on an appetite path again and Allan and I will have a nice dinner tonight while we remember how we live when it’s just the two of us.
Fresh Herb Ranch Dressing
2 cup mayonnaise
1 cup crème fraiche
1tsp. minced fresh chives
1tsp. minced fresh parsley
1tsp. minced fresh dill
½ tsp. minced garlic
½ tsp. minced onion
¼ tsp. sea salt
¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
Lemon juice to taste
Blend all ingredients in a sealable bowl.  Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.  Adjust ingredients as desired.  Halve all ingredients for a smaller batch.

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