My first meal in a new city

by Leah Moldowan

I arrived in New York City in January of 2016 to start a new chapter of my life. After five days of eating my way around the city I was faced with having to make my own dinner. I looked at what I had and realized I really needed to do a proper grocery shop. Unfortunately, that would have to wait until the next day. All I had were some oats, bananas, chickpea pasta and a red onion. So the first meal that I made in my new place was banana oatmeal—easy, simple and budget-friendly (which I already know is going to have to be the theme of my meals while I’m living here).

Navigating a new kitchen is proving to be a bit of a challenge. Having to search all the drawers for a spatula or dig through the cupboards to find a measuring cup that isn’t actually there, it certainly takes some time getting used to. Being the foodie that I am I did bring some things from home with me that I knew I couldn’t live without: my oversized Vitamix that took up third of my suitcase, a rice cooker, a small fraction of my napkin collection, miniature utensils and a few of my favourite dishes for food photos.

Another challenge has been completely restocking my pantry. I’m so used to having random things like flax seeds, maca powder and ten different types of flours that I reach for every once in a while. It’s easy to forget about those things until I really want them for a recipe and have none on hand. Thankfully my roommates are food people too and have a full collection of spices and condiments that they’re happy to share. Due to a limited amount of kitchen cupboard space, I have a collection of food and things from my kitchen at home in my bedroom. It’s not all a challenge though! Grocery shopping is one of my favourite hobbies so exploring new grocery stores is fun for me. There are so many new exciting products I’ve never been able to find before, but have heard so much about. So far I’ve been in an almost embarrassing amount of grocery stores and have made treks just to visit health food stores I saw online.

My first meal in a new city (2)
Grocery shopping in a new city, both comforting and disorientating

The kitchen is my favourite place in the house to be and this new kitchen is just a part of this new journey of mine. It will definitely take some getting used to, but I know I’ll find a way to make this kitchen feel like my own.