He used to send her flowers at work. Every Monday morning a bouquet would arrive, no card. Sometimes they were lilies, sometimes daisies or lilacs. Never roses. She remembered a small bouquet of red tulips, on her birthday. And a basket of sunflowers after their first holiday together. She would keep them in her office for the week, in the same crystal vase an old client has brought her. Until the next Monday, when the new ones would arrive. Week by week, bouquet by bouquet, months were passing, and the cleaning man was smiling every Friday night at the sight of the new flowers, slowly fading at the corner of her desk.
In the beginning, colleagues were asking questions. It was too new then, she did not want to talk much. Sometimes a friend, sometimes a client, oh just my brother playing jokes on me. But then, after a month or two it got obvious and she had to confess. They got used to it, sometimes bringing it up to tease her, an insider’s joke. She was dreading the thought that she would now have to explain, to all. The colleagues, the cleaning man, herself.
They started speaking less. He was not touching her that often anymore, that subtle touch on her shoulders or her arms or her neck when they were sitting close next to each other. They did not laugh that much lately. Screens were between them, phones and computers and tablets were glowing in the darkness of the bedroom. He did not like her pancakes anymore, he wanted to lose weight he said. She started despising the way he moved, the way he combed his hair and brushed his teeth. He stopped sending her flowers. She moved out of the apartment and rented a studio close to work.
The first week, silence. The second week, one friend asked her if something had happened. She smiled and said no, probably a mix-up with the delivery, oh of course, these things happen. The same day, she went to the flower shop after work and arranged everything. A different bouquet would keep arriving every Monday. With a card this time. “You ‘ll be fine”, she wrote to herself. And she was.
Double Potato Fritters for One
makes 7-8 medium fritters
- 1 big potato
- 1 big sweet potato
- 1 egg
- 1 clove of garlic finely grated
- 1 table spoon flour
- 1 tea spoon cumin
- 1 tea spoon sweet paprika
- fresh-trimmed pepper & sea salt
- 3 table spoons of olive oil (for frying)
1. Peel and grate the potato and the sweet potato in a bowl. Once grated, squeeze them well with your hands, 4-5 times, to remove as much liquid as possible.
2. Add the garlic, the egg, the flour, the cumin, the paprika and the pepper. Stir well and knead with your hands to incorporate all ingredients to the potato.
3. Heat a frying pan in high heat, and form the potato fritters. Directly before putting them in the pan, salt them lightly. Fry for 3-4 minutes, them flip them and fry another 3-4 minutes, or adjust frying time to taste.
4. Top with a fried egg and scatter chilly flakes on top, because you can. Serve with a table spoon of spicy Sambal Oelek sauce, pure or mixed with plain yogurt or both (as pictured).
Notes: The potato fritters will be quite loose when you form them, but that’s normal. They will hold together through frying, just flip them carefully. Salt them just before frying for a crunchier result.