Saturday, July 16, 2011

The guy who wrote 'Beaten, Seared, and Sauced' had an epiphany--I want one of those!

Life, blogs and cookbooks are the closest I'll ever get to cooking school, so I keep an eye, ear and taste-bud out for new ingredients, twists, easier methods. My southern potato salad improved ever since some sweet lolly (little old lady) 'fessed up her secret ingredients: diced pimentos, cayenne and a tiny amount of sugar.
Finished reading Beaten, Seared, and Sauced: On Becoming a Chef at the Culinary Institute of America a major kick out of reading this guy's wild ride to becoming a chef. His tight storytelling grabbed me early on. Would he be yelled at today? Would he hold his tongue? Would he quit?
   Despite the boot camp-style torture of instructors constantly screaming at the poor students, how could Dixon not learn with teachers around who urged him to greater culinary prowess daily: "If one day you think that you haven't really learned anything that day, pick up a cookbook and teach yourself something. Otherwise it's been a waste of twenty-four hours."
   I don't have the AHEM to survive a rigorous culinary school any more than I'd make it through boot camp. What's worse, I don't have the drive, the determination, the perseverance to even become the best cook. I enjoy cooking, but truthfully, I'm lazy, almost always looking for shortcuts to produce the tastiest but easiest meal I can.
   While Hubby channel surfs, you'll find me flipping through a cookbook or a blog to pick up a technique or a new ingredient. Oh, the shame of it, I read about cooking more than I cook! ;)
   Though I'm happy enough to be who I am, I will admit to very much envying this Dixon guy his epiphany moment, that moment when all his training coalesces and transforms him from a guy who enjoys cooking into a chef.
   Dixon describes his lightbulb moment beautifully, "I looked the same, but my body felt different. My mind had had a bypass done on it. I felt able. I felt electrified. I saw school and everything about it as an opportunity to try and touch perfection, to hone efficiency, to find at every moment a chance to be better, no matter the external pressures."
   Gotta love that! Not even sure what life skill I should work on honing for my personal epiphany, but Beaten, Seared, and Sauced sure drives home the importance of always learning and improving oneself.
   I want to become passionate enough about something to feel "electrified"! Don't you?


Practical Parsimony said...

". . .I read about cooking more than I cook." Me too!

Yes, I am electrified about sewing, all things sewing.

I am also electrified by parsimonious discoveries like I describe on my blog today, just now.

Sue said...

I love a good cookbook-ones with lots of stories, pictures, and history. I was lucky enough to inherit my mothers cookbook collection. Those old books from the 30's and 40's are gems.

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