January 27, 2012 § 16 Comments
I love to look at the work of various chefs, always trolling for ideas to pocket and have turn up sometime later, perhaps a little jumbled looking from having gone through the brain equivalent of a wash cycle, in meals I cook. I think there must always be a little ticker tape running in my mind storing up a restaurant meal here, a recipe there. Not that they ever seem to come back to me when I most want them to. But, they’re influential.
The food ideas from some quadrants are delectably comfortable, vindicating in a sense. I see them and I think, ‘oh that’s exactly how I would have done that!’ Or, ‘ha! I’ve made almost exactly that before! I should make it again sometime.’
Some food ideas shake you up a little, splash some cold water in your face to wake you up from the food ruts we all settle into, at times more frequently than not. These are the dishes that inspire you with an ‘I would never have thought of that!’ nudge. Sometimes that ‘I would never have thought of that’ is followed by an ‘and I’m intimidated by the very idea, and don’t think I actually want to try making something like that at all.’ Other times it’s followed by an ‘and I will make it the next chance I get!’
January 20, 2012 § 7 Comments
Pretty much everyone in my family is a card carrying nerd in his or her spare time. You may not perceive this on first glance. It’s a sort of internal nerdiness. Our spirits wear broken glasses, high water pants, and pocket protectors. We pick up on Star Wars references, and occasionally sing little songs under our breath about whatever it is we’re doing in the moment. Ok, maybe it’s actually just me who does that. But, whatever. (Have you seen New Girl? Kind of like that.)
One of my brothers has read famous political figures’ dissertations, for fun. The last time I spoke to my mother, she was gleefully reading a stack of dictionaries. (Some of them have fascinating material in their appendices. Seriously.) I have a certain propensity toward exploring the thesaurus. My reliance on it during college verged on the
religious, zealous, fervid, a little over the top.
As many of the food obsessed are wont to do, I also like to read through cookbooks. So, when my middle brother gave me The Flavor Thesaurus for Christmas, well it was clear that the book and I were going to need to get a room. I’ve been slowly savoring my way through it ever since. It’s truly a magnificent little oeuvre, informative, but not remotely boring.