If you haven't, you really should. I won't spoil it for you but it is the ubiquitous couple's "conversation" where he is trying to be practical and she just wants him to listen to her and stop trying to fix everything. I was watching this video again last night for, oh, I don't know, the fifteenth time and it hit me (again)...it's not about the food, cooking or recipe, it's about listening to yourself.
You know how I hate it when people are slaves to recipes. It happens in my classes all the time. It is the bane of my existence and I feel it is my mission in life to lead you down "freedom's path" to the place without recipes.
The inevitable (and constant) question is: "How much of that did you put in?" And, my inevitable response is: "Um, I don't know, maybe a (fill in the blank with a form of measurement)." It's not that I mean to be oppositional; it's just that as I stand in my mother's shoes, I really don't know for sure, exactly how much I put in. So, I often have some frustrated people in my classes, especially the accountants and engineers. At least in the beginning. Then, they learn to relax, have another glass of wine and just go with it or I guess, they find another kind of cooking class.
Because it's not about the measuring! It's about tasting the food and thinking or feeling something about it. Does it taste salty, sweet, bitter, tart, bland or whatever. If you don't think about or feel something about those taste experiences, I'm afraid you will be trapped in Recipeland, forever. EEK!!
Here's the thing, recipes are created by people who like things a certain way. That's why sometimes when you follow a recipe exactly, you think it tastes like crap because it doesn't suit your taste. The person who made up that recipe does not have your taste buds or flavor memories so how in the world can he/she tell you about making something? It may taste perfectly fine to them but not to you. And, you know what, that's okay! You are entitled to your opinion, so disagree!
Day in and day out, you follow the recipes of other people because you think they know more than you do. Well, maybe they do but only you know what you like and how you like it. Would you let someone pick out your clothes and tell you what to wear? Of course not! Unless you're five. So why do you allow other people to dictate how you are going to have your food? It's one thing to go to a restaurant or someone's home to enjoy their food. It's something else to be making your own food by following someone else's rules, don't you think?
So here's another little recipe exercise to help you find your way out of Recipeland and back to freedom! This is one I made up from different foods and flavors that I really like. We'll start simple with a salad because I'm only going to give you the ingredient list and no measurements! But I will give you a picture.
- red onion
- grape tomatoes
- feta cheese
- romaine lettuce
- white balsamic vinegar
- extra virgin olive oil
- kosher salt and ground black pepper
And as always...
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