tastes good to who?

kaleigh aubry

Raised on a farm in Eastern Canada, I cannot honestly say I fully appreciated my surroundings. I saw food as a means to survival. Getting supper on the table for 5 kids and a famished farmer looked like a tiring ordeal of gathering, cleaning, prepping, cooking, serving, waiting, eating, and more cleaning. Day in, day out. And yet somehow, despite the redundancy, I am left with certain deeply engrained food memories.

Getting off the bus from school and bounding into the garden to yank out a carrot, using the greens to rub off the dirt and chomping down on that perfect, juicy carrot. That’s actually how I remember it: juicy. Even the crunch from some of the dirt that didn’t get wiped off became part of the experience I so loved about pulling something from the earth and chowing down.

Baking bread with my mother and having a little tin all to myself to proudly show off the fruits of my arduous labor.

Watching my big sister cut her perfectly hand-crafted pastry into strips to top off her cherry pie.

My brothers and I pulling out the Joy of Cooking to make, for the hundredth time, butterscotch. Then pouring that butterscotch into a pan to go in the freezer so that we could eat it faster!

Catching my first fish with my dad, which I thought to be a snake but turned out to be an eel and scared the heck out of me. Bringing that eel home to my mother and her looking at us like, “You want me to cook that?” And she did.

Picking fresh berries to blend with chocolate ice cream (hello!), shucking corn, shelling peas, peeling endless vegetables and bringing all our peelings out to the chickens, who would give us eggs, and later meat. I knew where my food came from. There was never any mystery.

I am not describing an idyllic childhood. But I realize, when looking back now, that the purest moments of innocent pleasure can be traced back to food. And isn’t that so often the case?

The true irony is that I only started to love food, and cooking, once I’d moved to a city. Like so many, I craved the opposite of what I had always known, and I found that in Montreal.

kaleigh aubry

I still remember the exact moment I started to get excited, I mean, really excited about food. I was newly married and planning a romantic weekend dinner. I was looking through a copy of Donna Hay magazine (the first food magazine to show me how beautiful food can be) trying to find something simple we could make together. We settled on a roasted rack of lamb with a balsamic glaze and cherry tomatoes on the stem with grilled asparagus. We strolled through Marché Atwater feeling like rock stars while different meat vendors shouted out to us trying to draw us to their stand. Finally settling on the quietest of them, one of the local organic farms, we carried our paper-wrapped rack of lamb and légumes with us to the wine shop to pick out a special bottle from Napa. Back at home we took our time, listening to Charles Aznavour and Edith Piaf while preparing our dinner. We ate it on an old trunk I had brought with me from the Maritimes (5 years in that apartment and we never did manage to eat at a table like civilized people.)

mathias and kaleigh aubry

It was truly in the course of that simple, perfect day that I knew I wanted to explore food. And I was starting to realize that I could! I wasn’t one of seven anymore, I was one of two. Surely our pennies could purchase new and exciting ingredients, without making us avoid calls from the bank, if not meant to be consumed by a farm-load (literally) of people throughout an entire winter. And while I was at it, did I ever need to lay sights on a deep-freeze ever again, unless I for some reason wanted to?

The way I see it, we need to eat. That much is true. There’s no getting around it; every day we get hungry. So why not derive as much joy as possible from something we will always (in one way or another) be experiencing? It is with complete sincerity that I foreclose to you that I have no accolades worth mentioning, nothing to recommend myself other than passion, culinary trials that have encompassed successes as well as blunders, and an endless hunger. I hope to learn as much as I can about all things edible as I try out my own creations and whatever else catches my stomach eye.

Oh, and my name is Kaleigh Aubry. But my friends call me Kale. Uh huh, like the leafy vegetable. And this is my blog.

kaleigh bowser aubry

22 Responses to tastes good to who?

  1. Lovely blog you have going here! Glad to have found you.

  2. Lola says:

    Love your writing style..especially story of your first date with your now husband.

  3. Abbie says:

    Kale – I am actually a little creeped out at how many of your ‘food memories’ are identical to mine… the carrot, the bread with your own little tin, fishing (never did the eel thing though) … so true. So very, very true. (I wonder how much that has to do with also growing up on a farm in the Maritimes..?) This rocks! Good work!

  4. Leah says:

    Hello, love your blog! My husband and I are also living in Quito til June. My girlfriends and I love cooking, dining and pretty much anything to do with food. Anyway, this totally sounds creepy (but isn’t meant to be) but if you’re interested in meeting a fun group of girls (American/Canadian) (in their 30’s) in Quito you should email me. There are even girl’s nights, complete with wine, cocktails and girly movies :) No Spanish required, either.

  5. Merci pour votre commentaire sur mon blog :)
    Votre blog est très beau. Je suis contente de trouver des gens qui adore Donna Hay, elle est tellement une source d’inspiration.
    Au plaisir d’échanger avec vous!

  6. Jillybean says:

    I remember the garden, and picking beans and eating them right from the ground … the antique metal milk jug mail box… our picnics in the field … my memories of you seem to mostly involve food … miss you!

  7. Just wanted to tell you that I’m giving you a Liebster Blog Award!

  8. Thanks for stopping by my blog, because now I have found you! Lovely writing and recipes. Can’t wait to get to know you through food. All the best.

  9. Love your site. Signed up for your feed and can’t wait to see more :-)

  10. Katia says:

    Hi lovely Kale, thank you for stopping by my website, now I’m so glad I have found you… I love your blog so much!

  11. donna picard says:

    Just discovered your “bio” and how lovely to read…..made me think back to those memories as well and my early dreams of having my own “organic cafe” where you had year round access to healthy fresh food,friends and music and got paid for the joy of cooking and I don’t mean the Book either…..love your blog…and your pictures of pure happiness with your husband. Congratulations

  12. Love your blog, fantastic photos and foody inspiration – perfect!

  13. Dara Weyna says:

    Great blog, great name, great history…I’m hooked. Thank you!!!

  14. Shirley says:

    From one foodie to another….I always loved food, especially homegrown and like you, it took a year living in Montreal to really expand my horizons. I am planning a trip to Quito soon and your vacation pictures really inspired me. Keep on blogging.

  15. Love your story :) Very sweet, and super jealous of your farm! I have added you to my ‘Blogs I Love’ list. I hope this is okay. Have a beautiful day Kale.

  16. Debs says:

    What a lovely blog… your photos are stunning! I can’t wait to read more…like NOW!

    Thanks!
    Debs

  17. Roudy says:

    Hello !
    Very good site !

    Good bye my teacher !

  18. Karista says:

    Kale you are absolutely darling! I so enjoyed reading about your early food memories and the moment you truly began to love food. Beautiful! I’m so excited you stopped by my blog so I could come visit yours. Can’t wait to browse. :) Delicious Wishes! Karista

  19. Hello! Love your blog. Your food and photographs are wonderful!

  20. What a wonderful story of food memories you have here. Very nice to meet you and read your enchanting history!

  21. jemaiah says:

    Hi Kale. I love your blog the recipes, photos,and the stories that you write with them. Take care!

  22. Harry says:

    Hello, I log on to your new stuff regularly. Your humoristic style is witty, keep up the good work!

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