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Pumpkin Lover

Food for the (Broken) Heart

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Didn't drink or like seafood eh?

Sounds like time to make a nice big pot of cioppino or bouillabaisse, and wash it down with bottles of red wine!

When I had my last (nasty) breakup I too turned to eGullet for advice. :smile: Even though it was almost a month before I could physically taste food again - my tastebuds just went on strike, strangely enough.

I ate out a lot, at places he hated going to, ordering stuff he hated. (Which I loved, of course - no point suffering more!)

Despite a lot of advice to do prep-intensive cooking, I found that that only soothed me after the first initial anguish burn had faded somewhat. Otherwise I wound up thinking over things yet again in a self-destructive way. Blurring out that downward spiral with sensation (I guess that's where the alcohol and caviar comes in) helped more, to start with.

Afterward, when I could actually mourn (in an active way) as opposed to feeling the pain (in a passive way) the extensive stew making helped lots.

(I hope that made sense to you. I tried rewrtiting it but it all sounds a little incoherent to me.)

I wish you good times again soon. And may your life never echo Jerry Springer (like mine did !).


" ..Is simplicity the best

Or simply the easiest

The narrowest path

Is always the holiest.. "

--Depeche Mode - Judas

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As a fettered mind (or heart, as it may be) for me usually means the inability to really appreciate the process of eating, along the lines of the Indian food suggestion, I would recommend cooking stuff that takes lots of time and prep.

When I've had a stressful day, there are few things that help me unwind like a quiet house (as in no other human beings), my favorite music (these days mostly flamenco, but Sting also seems to work for me when I'm contemplative), a glass of good wine, and lots of chopping, dicing, mincing, chiffonading, etc. with a very sharp knife.

The rhythmic movement and sound of prepping always has a calming effect on me. Oh, and de-boning a poultry carcass. That's always therapeutic. I take all the bones, skin and leftover aromatics from my prep and throw them into the stockpot, so I can a) have some stock for a rainy day and b) be soothed by the aroma.

It also never hurts to dance, sing or air guitar while you're at it.

Pumpkin, I hope your heart mends soon.


sg

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Despite a lot of advice to do prep-intensive cooking, I found that that only soothed me after the first initial anguish burn had faded somewhat. Otherwise I wound up thinking over things yet again in a self-destructive way.  Blurring out that downward spiral with sensation (I guess that's where the alcohol and caviar comes in) helped more, to start with.

Actually, Ondine, that makes a lot of sense--when I first wrote that, I wondered afterwards if I really did want to spend a lot of time by myself. When I'm by myself, at least right now, I tend to get bitter. Spending time with friends and drinking my brains out (it's not that hardcore, but ya know) is helping me to take my mind off of this. You're absoutely right.

I took a two-mile run yesterday with my iPod at full blast. And ate AmyDaniel's chicken salad, of course. Fresh lobster sounds REAL good right now.

Verjuice, your post was wonderful. I just might hit up some restaurants alone, just me and a good book. It'd be nice to indulge in lychee and key lime pie fauxtinis anytime I want now. :smile:

Thank you guys again: reading the posts is therapeutic itself. This thread should be pinned for anyone going through heartache!

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After my recent break-up, I went to Soma and indulged in exquisite gourmet chocolates - an "Arbequina" (Spanish Olive Oil) truffle; an 8-year aged Balsamic vinegar truffle; and a dark truffle made from cacao beans from Madagascar.

If that wasn't enough of a serotonin high, I sipped on Soma's Mayan Hot Chocolate spiced with Australian ginger, Madagascar Vanilla, orange peel, chili and spices.

I felt that was fitting as I knew the ex would never have liked any of the above due to the fact that he disliked fat (even olive oil) and vinegar (balsalmic would have been wasted on him), only liked milk chocolate (70% dark chocolate? not possible!), and didn't like spicy things (would have freaked over the chili in the hot chocolate).

Over that week, I polished off a bottle of apple, maple syrup-enhanced cider that I had been saving for a special occasion (I guess this was it since he also didn't like sweet liqueurs).

Reflecting back, I wondered how I managed to last so long - he also didn't like mustard, mayonnaise, no dressing on salads, no sauces, and generally found ethnic food too strange. He would have been happy having a piece of plain grilled chicken, baked potato, and plain vegetables every night of the week, perhaps alternating the chicken with some other protein matter. He truly was someone who only ate to live. Oi.

This past week, a good foodie friend came into town, and we treated ourselves to a couple of fantastic dinners consisting of various tasting menus and matching wines. I never could have done this with the ex - a) he would have refused to eat any of the dishes we had, and b) he would have balked at paying such prices for what he considered small portions of strange tasting foods.

Hmm, what was it that I saw in him again...? Good food and good friends mend all things.

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[who has an appetite when their heart is broken?

not me. I wish I could say that I took refuge in labor-intensive cooking, but for me just the opposite. I remember nibbling on cheese some evenings, a bowl of soup on others...introspective music and wine were the constants.

Lest I not offer any constructive advice here, try inviting a friend over to share the cheese, soup, and wine, as well as your stories on those nights when you can't bring yourself to go out. You may not be ready for parties ("so, where is ____ [fill in the name]?" from well-meaning but ignorant acquaintances) or other large scale socializing, but some company will do you good. And start planning your first dinner party...



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Pumpkin Lover,

Hugs to you.

I used to call it "The Break Up Diet." I've gotten very svelt within a few weeks of a break up. Most of my friends hang out with a pint of "Ben and Jerry's". Not the world's greatest diet though. If you cannot eat much, then drink lots of water and fruit juices, and eat light fresh fruits and vegatables.

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Try making chicken salad with leftover El Malecon, by the way - delicious!

Now that sounds like healing food! Gotta try it. Amy, what did you put in your chicken salad?

Emma, all I did was chop up the leftover El Malecon chicken into small cubes, add about two heaping tablespoons of mayo, a bit of mustard, a diced red onion, and salt/pepper. You can adjust levels of mayo to your taste.

Lovely. :wub:

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Today my wife left me for another man. I came home to a note and some housekeys.

SO..... I cooked a salmon skin salad witha ginger vin. and had some of the roasted beets and fennel bulb w/ sprouts and bib lettuce that I had sitting. Two salads... hmm. Perhaps I'm just looking for fresh tastes.

Then I went to a small italian place, had some various whites (names to be forgotten from lack of care), carried on to a nice margahrita pizza from a woodburning oven. Had some barbera (once again.. I forget).

Beer.. Sierra Nevada Pale Ale and some Bittburger. Not good beirs per se, but ok. Now.. some ice cream in fresh waffle cones and a bit of reduced honeyed balsy vin. drizzled ove the top for contrast.

Mmmm.. tastes like sadness.

Wait, you wanted to cheer up? Skip my thoughts!

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LindaK has a great idea about asking a buddy over to share a meal. If you're lucky enough to have friends in whom you can confide, who will buck you up and tell you that it isn't all your fault, it will be essential support.

I stop tasting things when my heart is broken. That doesn't mean, of course, that I stop being hungry. Bacon and eggs and toast for lunch and a sundae from Dairy Queen after dinner are life support.

Pumpkin: Big hug. Tomorrow try to look your foxiest best and do not attempt to stop cryng. That's for next week.

Matsuska: That stinks. That rots. I am amazed that you spent the energy on cooking rather than curling up in the foetal position. Good for you.


Margaret McArthur

"Take it easy, but take it."

Studs Terkel

1912-2008

A sensational tennis blog from freakyfrites

margaretmcarthur.com

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Matsukasa, that is awful news.

I am so sorry.

I wish I could be there to offer support and a great good meal with great good wines to maybe help a little.

The only thing I can say to both you and Pumpkinlover is that it will get better. It may take some time, but it will. I promise.

I'm sending you an amazing bottle of wish-Barolo via the WIsh Fairy right now. :wink:


" ..Is simplicity the best

Or simply the easiest

The narrowest path

Is always the holiest.. "

--Depeche Mode - Judas

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Eh, I was a bit tipsy when I wrote that... sorry, not meaning to threadjack.

But seriously, wine and food help. The ACT of cooking and eating changes your mindset. In times of sadness I would say that many people stop cooking, stop making things, stop interacting with people. I on the other hand want to cook more, make more, involve myself more. I invite people who are my friends to come eat my food when I want to cook even when I'm not hungry. One of my good friends has never once been to my house without me cooking or feeding him something because of this simple point... when I am sad and feeling lonely I want to make someone else happy and comforted, and food does that for them. The act of making it and seeing them enjoy it, and even criticize some aspects of it, makes me happy. Win-Win situation.

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Matsusaka Ushi, I'm sending you a hug. Wish I could cook for you.

Last night I spent four hours making a lamb and spinach curry, a raita with dill, and a rice biriyani........I tanked an entrance exam for graduate school a few days ago. Know what? Cooking did make me feel better - something I could do without thinking so much!


Edited by Susan G (log)

I'm a canning clean freak because there's no sorry large enough to cover the, "Oops! I gave you botulism" regrets.

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Today my wife left me for another man. I came home to a note and some housekeys.

Oh holy Jesus. I'm so sorry. Forget my troubles, take all of this advice for yourself!!! Oh dear. :sad:

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