Cocinar cuscús para mi padre
Alan García en 1975, a los veintiséis años. Foto familiar.

Crónica introspectiva

Audio RevistaOrsai.com Cocinar cuscús para mi padre

El 17 de abril de 2019, el expresidente peruano Alan García se disparó en la cabeza cuando la policía se preparaba para arrestarlo por asuntos relacionados al caso Odebrecht. Su hija Carla pasa, este domingo, su primer día del padre en orfandad y escribe, en exclusiva para Orsai, este homenaje.

Mi papá le daba poca bola a los regalos que yo le hacía en su cumpleaños o por el día del padre. Los agradecía sonriendo y luego desaparecían para siempre. La corbata, el Kindle y la maquinita que hacía que al reloj no se le atrase la hora, fueron algunos de los regalo-fracaso y era un misterio saber a dónde iban a parar.

Daba la impresión de que necesitaba pocas cosas para estar tranquilo, lo que hacía que regalarle algo fuera un parto.

Hace cinco años se me ocurrió preparar un plato que él había mencionado varias veces: cuscús con cordero; no tenía mucho que perder.

Ayudada por una prima que sí sabía cocinar y una receta hallada en Pinterest, aparecí un día con el plato en una bandeja caliente, y descubrí no que tenía mano para preparar cocina marroquí, sino que tenía el regalo para todos los días especiales que vinieran en adelante.

A mi papá no solo le gustó el cuscús. También corrió a decirle a la embajadora de Marruecos que yo preparaba el mejor cuscús del mundo. Casi la retó, en mi nombre, a encontrar un cuscús que le llegara a los talones al mío.

Yo vivía con miedo de tener que hacer, un día, un mano a mano con algún cocinero árabe o norafricano. Eso, felizmente, no sucedió.

Lo preparé unas veinte veces. Cada vez con más gente a la que mi papá invitaba y quería impresionar. Me convirtió en una leyenda culinaria entre sus amigos cercanos. Con el tiempo fui tratando de variar a pastas, a pasteles e incluso a otros guisos que, si bien eran celebrados. nunca al nivel de mi plato estrella.

Cuscús. Eso bastaba para tenerlo sentado al lado mío interrumpiendo cualquier tema del que se hablara en la mesa, con el fin de comentarle a todos que su hija Carla había dado la gran sorpresa de (aquí lo cito) «tener un increíble talento para interpretar recetas de la cocina mundial».

En ese plato encontramos un lugar. Un punto. Un momentito en el que los dos éramos felices. Yo era feliz viéndolo comer el cordero con sémola que más le gustaba en el planeta, y él era feliz de saber que se lo había preparado su hija, y que lo preparaba solo para él. (A Pinterest le voy a deber eso toda la vida.)

Alan García en 1975, a los veintiséis años. Foto familiar.

Esta foto siempre me gustó porque es de la época en la que yo ya estaba por nacer, lo que me hace asociarme mucho a ese joven barbudo y hippiento

Este mayo mi papá hubiera cumplido setenta años, pero en abril tomó la decisión de quedarse para siempre de sesenta y nueve.

Sesenta y nueve es un número con el que mi papá y yo hubiéramos hecho un chiste obvio y subido de tono, espantando a la platea. Después él diría con cara de pícaro:

—¡Por favor! Ya no le den más alcohol a mi hija —y nos reiríamos mucho.

Eso del cuscús lo cuento ahora porque es el plato que debería estar cocinando para el almuerzo del día del padre, pero no estoy cocinando nada, porque sucede que ahora estoy lejos, y él está lejos… Pero al mismo tiempo estamos juntos siempre.

Los papás me parece que no se van, sino que se vuelven permanentes y sutiles. Con el mío, pasó así.

Alan García y su hija Carla. Foto familiar.

Temas relacionados

#Muerte #Padre

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