Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Cooking Out Of Joy

It seems that for some reason it’s gets easier and easier to get aggravated by really stupid things.  Maybe we can blame the weather change.  Generally, I’m a fairly calm and positive person, but the last couple of months, I’ve been very agitated with things that normally don’t bother me and sometimes I don’t even know why… 

“But, I’m trying Ringo.  I’m trying real hard to be the shepherd…”

To suppress or alleviate this unwanted sense of anger, I sometimes desperately try to find the most relaxing or soothing things to do.  It’s the kind of stuff that provides you the right distraction for a happy few minutes.  It’s the desperate escape your brain needs sometimes.  Aside from listening to mind numbingly happy songs like 1234 or Here Comes The Sun, I try to enjoy simple cooking/food related things that make me smile and keep my blood pressure a nice mellow low of 150 or better.  Cooking can be therapeutic even though many people often feel that its a chore, so I thought I’d give people a few good examples.  Maybe you can come up with your own as well.

The following is a list of some of the cooking related things that make me smile:

  • the sound of meat searing on a pan
  • pounding and kneading pasta dough
  • the hot gust of aroma when you first open an oven with a roast
  • the smell of wine/alcohol deglazing
  • drinking the wine/alcohol you’re using to deglaze while deglazing
  • stirring slow forming mounds and curds of scrambled eggs
  • watching egg white strands form webs in poaching liquid
  • watching souffles rise
  • watching souffles fall
  • seeing the tiny bubbles when emulsifying
  • the smell of brown butter
  • licking the last of the honey coated on the spoon
  • strolling the aisles in a supermarket
  • mixing hamburger/sausage meat with your bare hands
  • smell of zesting lemons
  • watching risotto thicken
  • making quenelles with spoons
  • flipping fried eggs
  • watching grits absorb milk
  • brulee-ing anything, fire rocks!
  • crisping meat skin
  • stuffing a bird
  • watching quince poach from yellow to pink to red
  • whipping foam, yeah yeah yeah, I know its so 3 years ago…
  • breaking down ducks
  • smoking pork belly, i.e. makin’ bacon
  • “tasting” hot chocolate chip cookies out of the oven
  • pouring cake batter
  • flouring surfaces
  • cooking anything in duck fat

Remember we’re almost at the holidays.  Stay relaxed, stay calm and stay hungry.

1 comment:

  1. So, I love your blog... and your participation in the past Linecook blog was awesome...

    Here are some additional cooking related things that make me smile:
    Walking through the farmer's market; whether or not I have anything to actually buy...
    The aroma of beef stock that has been simmering for several hours...
    Sticking an immersion blender into a pot of *insert soup type here*...
    Watching my Kitchenaid creaming butter and sugar...
    Tossing veggies that are saute-ing in a cast iron pan...
    Tossing anything into a pot or pan, layering flavor after flavor...
    Folding egg whites into batter...
    Folding anything into anything...
    Streaming oil into a mixture, while rapidly whisking, and watching an emulsion form before your very eyes...
    The aroma of Bouef Bourginion as it wafts out of the plastic container; that I enjoy for lunch at my cubicle, while others munch on boring, bland, over-priced food...