Thursday, September 30, 2010

It is possible

Today was just me and the housekeeper. She comes only two days per month.

It was my responsibility to cook lunch for the two of us. Luiz and his mother went shopping in Rio.

Is that possible!? Can a gringo cook lunch for the housekeeper? This situation never presents itself without some controversy. (We long ago stopped the housekeeper from cooking – we can do this just fine and we would rather she keep doing the messy cleaning we hate to do.)

Now – keep in mind that “Nemnem,” our twice a month housekeeper, has expressed delight in my cooking in the past. I think she actually likes my fish or pasta or grilled lunches. But the overarching Brazilian forces can’t imagine this as satisfying. So usually I step back.

No beans? No rice? What? So what is for lunch!?

Today we enjoyed a ground meat and vegetable spaghetti sauce over whole wheat rigatonis with steamed broccoli and carrots. Just perfect. We both enjoyed it. But that will not impact the idea that the gringo cannot cook for Brazilians… mark my words.

However – we are happy. Nemnem and I share a secret bond.


Rachel said...

I love cooking for my maid! She likes to try the things I make. But I can never get her to eat the pumpkin pancakes I make. Never.

Ray Adkins said...

Our maid from Bahia would absolutely not consider it a meal if she didn't see beans and "farinha".
Also, Cilantro in everything, "EVERYTHING"!!
Cilantro was somewhat foreigner to Sao Paulo, it is sparsely used in some kinds of fish PERIOD.

Danielle said...

haha. I'd love to see you two together!

Our maid never wants to eat my food anymore. :( She always leaves right around lunch time and always insists on just leaving and not eating! Maybe she doesn't like my food-- I usually make pretty average things (veggies, meat, beans, and rice!). ;( :(

Fiona said...

That is a really sweet scene. :) I wish I had a maid sometimes, especially today, while I was scrubbing the floor on my hands and knees. Hmm.

Jim said...

Rachel - Nemnem loves my baked goods - but I have never tried something as radical as vegetable pancakes (although your idea sounds good to me!)

Ray - We usually have some beans and rice in plastic containers in the fridge. If Nemnem really wants them she can microwave some. I hear ya - my father in law was the same as your maid.

Danielle - I think she is voting with her feet. Sorry...

Fiona - price it out - a little help may be worth the cost.

And I must say in my defense that I offered Nemnem a choice of pasta (regular spaghetti or whole wheat rigatonis) and I cooked ORGANIC carrots - which always taste like sugar cubes. (Even if Luiz will never put one in his mouth.)

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