Saturday, November 3, 2007

To set the tone of this thing...

Yes, this was still a bitch to make.

Another argument I have with serious food people is that they're always talking about how creative cooking is...but [this] also misses the whole point of cooking, which that it is usually totally mindless. What I love about cooking is that after a hard day, there is something comforting about the fact that if you melt butter and add flour and then hot stock, it will get thick! It's a sure thing! It's a sure thing in a world where nothing else is sure; it has a mathematical certainty in a world where most of us who long for some kind of certainty are forced to settle for crossword puzzles."

-- Nora Ephron, Heartburn

When Nora's right, she's right.

I'm a professional pastry chef and food consultant, and I'm tired of food blogs which deify carrot salads and arcane cupcakes, and make you feel guilty if you're not ferreting out some bizarre unknown ingredient and torturing it into something rare and strange. After slogging away in restaurant kitchens for more years than I care to admit (15), I'm ready for the simple -- hell, I was ready then.

Sure - in the professional culinary world there are plenty of lunatics who will sear their hands pulling molten sugar and make desserts with twelve different elements on the plate, but they're really not normal. I'm kidding; artists are artists no matter the medium, and if someone wants to mix tobacco and rosemary and caramel on a dessert plate, who am I to criticize? It's just that this sort of culinary wanking no longer interests me, and, like Nora, these days I am much more in the mood for things that are simple and surefire and don't require a lot of thought.

That's it! Thoughtless food! I think I've just coined a phrase.

Recipes to come shortly.

© 2007 Sandy Soto Teich

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