Wash rice, cover with water, start the rice cooker. Peel and chop an onion. Chop baby carrots into small pieces (you don’t like carrots). Peel and chop a potato. Cube stew beef and season with salt and pepper.
Coat the bottom of a heavy pot with oil, and add minced garlic. When the oil is hot and the kitchen is filling with delicious garlic smells, add the beef. Sautée. When the beef is browned (but not cooked all the way), add the onions. Sautée. Add the carrots and potatoes. Sautée. When the onions are clear and the potatoes have that translucent sheen, cover all of it with water. Bring to a boil.
When the water comes to a boil, skim the fat scum off the surface. Skim until the surface is as clean as possible. Skim until no more scum is bubbling up. Skim until you realize you can’t skim your feelings off. Add blocks of curry. When the sauce still isn’t as thick as you’d like, add more blocks of curry.
Lower the heat, so the curry is emitting slow burps, instead of bubbling away.
When the potatoes are soft and the carrots cooked through, add frozen peas and frozen corn. Let cook some more, so the peas and corn thaw. Slice up a log of danmuji and drown the slices in vinegar.
Fluff up the cooked rice in the cooker, and scoop some into a bowl. Ladle curry over rice, more beef, fewer carrots. Eat with the extra vinegary danmuji.
Back in my apartment, alone, and I don’t know who I’m addressing here. Back in my apartment, alone, looking for comfort. We spent five intense, wonderful, amazing days together, and, now that I’m back in my apartment alone, I’m really, really feeling the lack of you.