Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Cooking

I love food tv. It has been one of the channels I have been addicted to this summer. I am now in love with Alton Brown and Bobby Flay. More with Alton since he actually tells me about food, the chemistry of it all...why ovens and grills work in the ways that they do and how they react with different surfaces of food. How different cuts of meat are in fact different and how one should buy them, cook them, freeze or not freeze them, and what to mix them up with it. How spices cannot just be thrown into a pot and be expected to react to each other but instead, how they will inevitably react with each other. How a mushroom must be washed, cut and sauteed. How potatoes have a life of their own.

It's brilliant.

I am an awful cook. I cannot cook for shit anymore.

Before food tv came into my life, I was a good cook. People used to come from far and wide to eat my cooking. I have cooked twice in the three months I have been home and both times it has been a disaster. And I was cooking two of my tried, tested and true recipes and both sucked ass. I am in shock but no longer in denial.

I do not know if this is because people in my life who couldn't cook to save their lives now use truffle oil delectably or can make potatoes sing with fresh rosemary or if I now have lost the belief that if you stick everything in a pot with some love and a suspension of belief, that it will taste great, whatever the reason may be, I can no longer cook and this makes me very afraid.

I may have to start following recipes and I do not know how this translates for the free spirit that I am. Knowing what I know about reactions, how can I blindly throw things together and expect them to do what I want them to do? To will them into submission of flavor and applause for my effortless, flawless cooking?

If I mistakenly read a manual for life, I'm fucked.

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