Starting a day from making a fire is a great lesson in patience: there is no place for anger, hurry or frustration there. Only acceptance of fire’s fickleness, its wayward nature will bring peace (and desired warmth).
Once we realise that food doesn't come from the supermarket, we discover that we're capable of enriching our diets in edibles hitherto unknown. And with the knowledge of where the food comes from - comes respect for it.
Who doesn't like doughnuts? The problem with them, however, is that they are quite unhealthy, or heavy at least, as most deep-fried foods are. Parniki - the light-as-a-cloud steamed doughnuts that my Mum have been making since as long as I can remember - are my idea for dealing with doughnut craving.
How to explain a liking for this rather acquired taste? For the 4-year-old me, zupa ogórkowa was synonymous with a treat: something I know I'll enjoy, and what is also nourishing and healthy. Or so I was told.
Gołąbki, as that's how cabbage rolls are called in Poland, are perfect comfort food for early spring: the green of the cabbage invokes freshness we all so crave at this time of the year, and the earthy, steaming hot filling gives comfort, much sought after on still-chilly early spring days.