Purim is coming, and we are baking at Chez Imperfect. This year, I'm wimping out on the vegan GF hamentashen, and going straight for the sugar: vegan caramel corn. We're making batch #3 tonight, and the house smells amazingly of caramel... Come Saturday night, the Man will have bags of yumminess to offer to folks who come and listen to him do silly voices over the megilla.
But all in all, it's a holiday when we spend a lot of time watching other people eat - or judging it wiser to stay home. And as prone as I might be to self-pity, I'm actually pragmatic here: it's hard to find and safely prepare an Imperfect friendly yummy or two, especially when you are up to your ears in hamentashen flour. In fact, I am actively grateful to people who recognize this risk...and opt out.
The Man and I think of our mishloach manot as a kind of gentle persuasion: oh, do you like that? I can give you the recipe...it was easy to make. But primarily, as a way of saying to our friends and community, hey - good to see you! It might make you uncomfortable to receive and not give, but we're fine with that. We value our friendships and community more than some relationship balance sheet.
But sometimes, we get an unexpected revolt. This year, it happened at the Eldest's school.
After a flurry of emails and a phone call or two between me and the Cooking Club Leader (aka, lady whose club turns out yumminess with extreme wheat, dairy and egg content, but is very nice), the flurry concluded with the following result:
(From the Assistant Head of School, via email)