Catch and Release

Last week I found myself standing, hovering over two salmon fillets waiting for them to release from the pan. Id got a recipe from pinterest and wanted to give it a go. Every article I’ve read on pan frying fish makes it seem so simple, magical even! “Just give it time” they say, “you’ll know!”.  I’ve got the fire low given my last #salmonhashfail and the oil just shallow enough that I wonder if it’s enough, am tempted to add more but refrain. I’ve read three separate articles and I’ve still not decided if I should have put them skin side down or skin side up. Honestly I’m gonna have call on the lord for this one. I’ve waited six whole minutes before prodding it with my spatula and wonder if I’m better off just baking fish from now on. Apparently I haven’t the talent for pan frying fish, but then I got deep and it dawned on me.  Those two pieces of half cooked fish are a metaphor for life. I start thinking of a certain situation that’s been plaguing me for the better part of this year and how I’d resolved to leave it up to God, but very much like me here with the spatula, I’ve used every tool I can think of to see if it’s ready. I’ve gotten better I think, but still have difficulty knowing when to leave it alone. One article said “It takes as long as it takes, but don’t walk away from it. You have to be ready to turn it when it is ready to give.”  I swear I had to ask, are we still talking about fish? I was staring off into the distance of my kitchen and on an express train headed straight to my feelings, which ain’t a good place to be in with fish frying in the kitchen. Ok focus, meal prep! Make it count Cassandra because this is lunch for the next six days! NO SEAMLESS!!! So I chill, kinda. More like lean on the counter across from the stove and think good thoughts. Good fish thoughts, good non-stick thoughts, good salmon-hash-over-rice-still-serves-the-same-purpose thoughts.  This is gonna go well, I re assure myself. They look great already! Asian sauce is gonna be delicious with the salmon. Lunch is about to be amazing! Again, chill…I have a tendency to celebrate too soon.

I finally decide it’s time to give this a go and first gently then with some asserted force get the spatula under the fillet.  Gingerly I flip it and immediately begin a celebratory dance as I marvel at its golden brown perfection. Hey, if you don’t celebrate your wins, who will?  At some point things will change, be they plaguing burdens or fish skin, and that change may lead to a smokey kitchen and ruined frying pan, but sometimes it can lead to delicious omega 3’s that sustain you. Just don’t give up, because this is life, and there ain’t no non-stick pan for life!

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