The SIMPLY FROM SCRATCH cover is being created as I type this. I understand an apron might be featured; appropriate, as my widowed narrator takes to wearing her late husband’s old grilling apron around the house.
An apron is a kind of uniform, perhaps as much a symbolic one as one born of necessity. What I mean is, I always get a new sense of mental focus when I pull an apron over my head, anticipating the meal I’m about to create.
I’d go so far as to compare tying on an apron to applying war paint — or to “puttin’ on the foil,” if I may quote from Slapshot, which happens to be my favorite Paul Newman movie and my favorite hockey movie. If your approach to cooking is anything like mine, you must prepare yourself for battle, just like a hockey goon before a game.
Speaking of hockey, my first apron was a Montreal Canadiens apron. I bought it at the gift shop at the fabled Montreal Forum in 1991, a few years before that storied old sports arena was gutted and converted.
I also have a sturdy Wachusett Records apron, gifted to me by Benj Lipchak — forever friend, producer of my piano music, and founder of Wachusett Records.
And my mother gave me my other two aprons. One is handmade and based on 1940s patterns; the other — the one I reach for most often these days — is deep red and hides stains, which is good for me, because I’m pretty messy.
So, I’m curious: What does your apron look like? Where did it come from? And what does it inspire in you? (Dread, joy, creativity? Or …?)