Friday, September 10, 2010

Being a good cook is...

Fish are cunning, be prepared.  Kiwiana.
Being a cook is not about using the trendiest, costliest ingredients and mixing east and west in ever more surprising cocktails.  It's not about perfection, or panache, or even a certain je ne sais quoi.  That might be what being a chef is about, but how would I know - I am a cook.
Being a cook is about taking what your budget, your friends or mother nature sees fit to grant you and making it into a yummy dish just in time for the ravenous hoardes to work up an appetite.  And then taking the same ingredients and making them into something different but equally yummy on day two and day three.  It's about taking advantage of a glut today and preparing for tomorrow.  It's about whipping something delicious up for three guests and then keeping a smile on your face and a clue in your head when six guests arrive. 
Beetroot in my veggie garden

It's knowing when simple and tasty is better than ambitious and risky.  It's getting the most out of other people's recipes without being chained to them.  It's about enthusiasm and pragmatism.  It's knowing why sharing food is a joy and a vital part of being a family, or being a community.

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