My food philosophy: it’s just food…

I’ve been writing this post for over a week, trying to get it right.
I still haven’t.

I want it to be something between a philosophy and a gentle call to arms (or kitchen knives).  I want it to be a reflection on the simplicity of food.  An encouragement to those who think that people who can cook are some kind of different species.  A reassurance that food is ultimately forgiving.  That the kitchen needn’t be a place of stress or anxiety.  That when all is stripped away… it’s just food…

I wanted to tell you about culinary mishaps: the time my friend Frankie whacked a whole jar of curry paste into something because she didn’t read the label.  Or the story of when my Gran cooked tripe and the house stank for weeks.  Or when I burnt dinner so badly we had to make a mercy dash to McDonald’s for emergency nuggets.  Trying to tell these stories to illustrate that total inedibility is rare.  But when it does happen it’s ok.  There’s always emergency nuggets.
It’s just food…

I wanted to challenge the anxiety so many feel when trying something new.  Of getting the timings right, the flavours right, the textures right.  It will almost always be all right. It’s just food…

I wanted to reflect the solace to be found in stirring.  The joy of hearing the sizzle of something hitting a hot wok.  The way dough feels when you knead it.  The smell of a pot of stock permeating the downstairs as it bubbles.  Bright coloured vegetables that mingle in pans of slippery noodles.
Of butter and flour and milk.
And onions and garlic and wine.
And chilli and soy and lime.
Of alchemy.
Accessible alchemy.
Nothing magic here.
It’s just food…

I’ve over-complicated this post.  Over-thought it.  Over-worked it.
The irony is not lost on me.

Don’t do that with your cooking.

Jump in.

It’s just food…

Love always wins. (1)


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