The Joy of Not Cooking

A small collection of dining ware essentials from Muji

A friend of mine graciously offered me to stay in her guesthouse as I transition back to civilization, which is, for now, L.A. She has a chic mid-century home situated on a hilltop in Laurel Canyon, a neighborhood steeped in a long-standing creative spirit. I love it here. It's far enough from the hubbub to feel at peace, but only a ten-minute drive away from Sunset Boulevard for when you want the hubbub.

The guesthouse has a view of the swimming pool on one side and the expanse toward DTLA on the other. It contains nothing more than an entryway, a full bathroom and a large bedroom. Instead of air conditioning, there are floor-to-ceiling louver windows which catch the cool breeze coming through the canyon and make the white curtains billow in the afternoon. It's quintessentially L.A. and it's more than I could ever ask for. I lovingly nicknamed it "The Clubhouse". 

The Clubhouse has a mini-fridge, a microwave and an electric tea kettle. I can't tell you how luxurious it feels not having to cook. At the ranch, I had to cook morning, noon and night. Here, I can pick up bits and bobs of things from the prepared foods counter, like a few slices of roast beef or a small filet of poached salmon, plus a side vegetable dish or two. I just nibble at them when I'm hungry, but more likely I am having dinner over at a friend's house or catching up with a friend at happy hour. After spending two and a half years in the middle of nowhere, I have a whole new level of appreciation for modern conveniences. (I've already tried the Postmates app a few times too–what a godsend!)

Last night, at a party at Neue House, I told my friend Alisa about how I'm back in the SGD lifestyle, full swing, with my kitchenless set-up:

Me: My mini-fridge is basically a cube.

Alisa: It's not one of those that are three-feet tall with a freezer?

Me: Nope. 

Alisa: What do you have in there?

Me: A box of Raincoast Crisps, a little jar of honey, a little jar of champagne mustard, tartar sauce, hot sauce–

Alisa: So mostly condiments and sauces.

Me: Uh-huh. Like bachelors do. A bottle of kombucha, a bottle of sparkling water, a can of Diet Coke... A cheese end–I choose from the bowl of cheese ends because they're more mini-fridge-friendly... Oh, and a jar of anchovy-wrapped capers.

Alisa: That's funny that a jar of anchovies is something you had to have in your mini-fridge.

Huh. It is, isn't it.