My day job sometimes requires more focus than I want to give. And the routine to get to that day job is more monotonous than I sometimes want to admit. I wake up every morning and proceed as I did the day before. Unwillingly, I turn off the alarm, check the blackberry, hit the shower, check the blackberry again, listen to cable news, put on my bi-monthly dry-cleaned suit, and armed with breakfast in my hand, meet my 25-35 minute commute.
I know. Basic. You already think you know me. I can hear your thoughts, “This guy probably goes to his weekly happy hour, takes his coffee the same way at the same time each morning, and says ‘mornin’ the same way to the same people every day.”
Well – you are right. And even though I enjoy more days than not at my job, I still need some motivation to propel me through the monotony. So I unwind in the kitchen.
This is more than Monday pasta and chicken, pork chops on Wednesday, and a Sunday splurge of meatloaf for the roommates. (Although that sometimes happens too.) More often than not, I try to throw some curve balls. (I played a lot of baseball growing up.) I love food, I need food, and more importantly I can’t get enough of the way food works and how it tastes. That’s why when I come home at night, I strap on my apron and sharpen my knife. From coq au vin to cucumber and anchovy bruschetta; if you can name it, I’ve tried making it (or at least it’s on my list). And while baking always takes a back seat to stove top cooking, one day I may break down and purchase that Kitchen Aid artisan mixer and treat my friends to a cake or two.
Cooking is something that I can fully engage in because my mind doesn’t wonder as much. And it shouldn’t because if I get distracted I could chop off a finger or create something totally inedible. I want to please the pallets of my friends, but maybe being in the kitchen also helps relieve a pressure I place on myself to succeed at new things. And this pressure, in part, probably stems from the quarter-life crisis I currently face. Regardless the reason, I have a drive to cook and cook new things.
With all of that said, you can probably see why I was asked to contribute my scattered, inconsistent thoughts on cooking. More for my own benefit than yours. While this introduction was a long time coming, I think that I may enjoy being able to relay some of my thoughts about one of things that makes me smile the most. But be warned because aside from cook time or temperature references, I don’t use many recipes. In fact, I don’t even encourage recipes. Nevertheless, I do know that many people don’t have the time or patience to cook a dish several times in a night or even a week to perfect the flavors, so I’ll do my best to explain some of my antics in the kitchen.