This is a post about food processors. Food processors and love.
Mark and I will have been married twenty years in April. To say the romance has never gone out of our marriage is an understatement. So you will probably not understand this when I tell you, but Mark got me a food processor for Valentine’s Day. Why did Mark get me a food processor as the ultimate love gift? Here’s why:
My old food processor, made by Farberware, is on the right. And there’s a story behind it, naturally. That food processor is a quarter of a century old. I bought it 25 years ago when food processors first came on the market. I was besotted. The thing weighs about 40 pounds, but you know what? It’s never quit working, not for a second. I still have the original plastic bowl. Oh, sure, it’s rusted around the base and there are some food particles that have permanently bonded to the motor housing. But it still works like a charm, which is why for just a brief second when I opened my Valentine’s gift, I felt like I was betraying a lover.
I learned to make bread in that food processor. The mushroom duxelles that went into Julia Child’s Turkey Orloff which got fed to the acclaimed Broadway actor Joel Grey on Oscar night at my house in Charlotte (oh, that’s a story I’ll have to tell you later) were made in that food processor. My first hollandaise sauce emulsified in that machine. It has steadily chugged along for 25 years. But a few weeks ago, when Noah was processing some meatloaf mix in it, it couldn’t quite get up enough steam for the job.
So here we are. Dweebs on parade. Noah insisted on snapping a picture of us with the new food processor, twenty-five years in the making. I think I mentioned that the new machine has 1,000 watts of power. The Farberware had 200.
But here’s the bigger thing. Twenty-five years ago, I had never met Mark Mayhew. I was a single career girl living by myself and for all I knew it would be that way for the rest of my life. I was very satisfied with my then new food processor. But I didn’t have anybody that would send me flowers or change a flat tire in the middle of a snowstorm or swap a burned-out light bulb in the overhead fixture even though the cover was filled with dead bugs.
There was no one who would battle a bee infestation in the bathroom or save every single one of my files from a corrupted computer or buy a shower chair so he could wash my hair after cancer surgery. That new food processor isn’t about food. It’s about love.