I used to leave the house and check I had my keys and mobile phone. With those two things, I was set. But now when considering whether to go out: I have questions? Do I have a mask? Am I going to a crowded place? Will the spot I have picked for lunch have space on the terrace? Because I am only doing terraces? Hand sanitizer? (Check)
We in Spain have the unenviable ranking of most COVID cases in Europe. Despite having the harshest lockdown in the EU. We have been the only country who must wear a mask outdoors no matter where. (To summarize: it sucks.)
If you’ve stepped outside you know it’s hot. And it’s muggy. After some consideration, a 30-minute walk to that spot I love while sucking air through my (reusable handmade – thinking about the wildlife) mask doesn’t sound so appealing.
New plan in that case. I stay home and the chef comes to me.
I have just the people too: Supper Stars Chefs. I tried them out just before the lockdown in March. They sent me over a chef called Sunny who brought all his cooking kit and the food. He cooked up a pastiche of sorts. There was a Filipino Spring Roll to start with, kind of an eggy crepe filled with shredded vegetables: Lumpia Sariwa. Next came a Thai Green Chicken Curry, a bone-in drumstick in a pool of sauce. The Malaysian Nasi Goreng came next.
Dessert: a chilled sweet coconut soup. The corners of the vibrant green pandan jellies poking through. The translucent little orbs of Tapioca bobbing about. Having never been to British boarding school, I have no ill associations with Tapioca. The opposite. I find their squidgy oddness delightful. And chasing them around as they bump into one another and dodge my spoon entertains the child that persists in me. Not to mention getting a bit that has stuck together into my mouth and dedicating some thoughtful time to working them apart before chewing. If that is not mindful eating, I don’t know what is.
Some of us have an organized mind that can do the shopping and plan and make the food we are going to serve and still enjoy the dinner party. I’ve got one of those minds. General-like my husband will say. But it still doesn’t compare to having a person come over with the food, cooking, serving and then cleaning up. The only thing I had to do was send Chef Sunny pictures of my plates so he could decide how to plate up.
I chatted a bit to him while he was cooking. He has an interesting background and is passionate about the food of his origins. But for the most part, I played a guest in my home along with my friends.
The Supper Stars Chefs concept started in Portugal, where it was a great success before launching in Spain and now the UK. Prices start at 40€ a head and go up to 75€. They also offer workshops in your home from pasta making to sushi which starts at 60€ per person.