Thursday, September 20, 2007

I guess I’m still on the STEEP uphill learning curve…

When I used to say I didn’t know how to cook, I always assumed that I could if I wanted to – without any help.

School has always been a walk in the park for me. I pick up a book, flip through the first and last page of each chapter, and ace the test. And to make things even easier for me… I LOVE LOVE LOVE to learn new things. Sure college had its difficult moments but those moments were usually caused by my not reading a book at all and expecting that if I slept on it (literally), it would radiate into my brain.

I also tried falling asleep listening to the Spanish radio station. Turns out – you can’t learn Spanish that way.


Cooking should be the same right?!? Follow directions = cook like Emeril Lagasse.

Humph. Not so much.

Cooking is quite literally an art.

I know what you’re thinking – ‘didn’t you get a bachelors degree in the fine arts?!?!?’ Well, yes and no. Film is an ‘art’ but it’s a very technical art. In school they teach you what light temperatures are effective for different feelings, what music brings out certain emotions, what colors on the color wheel to use to push your message, what sound volumes cause fear/happiness/excitement, etc.

When it comes to actual art… I ride the short bus.

I really am trying to learn and I appreciate all the help from mom. Perhaps she gets annoyed when I call her 15 times from the grocery store and beg for help – but she doesn’t let on.

Even with help, I had two pretty bad ‘cooking offenses’ this week…

When looking for purple cabbage… I ended up with Radishia (yup, I know I’m butchering the spelling of whatever it was I bought). What is Radishia? I have no idea but it looks a lot like purple cabbage – only smaller and a heck of a lot more expensive. I only realized my mistake when the cashier had to ask a co-worker what the cost code for Radishia was. I was too embarrassed to admit that all I wanted was purple cabbage so… I took it home and it sat in the veggie drawer until it rotted and I guiltily threw it away.

Then, I made dinner for everyone on Sunday. I nailed the Thai chicken (whew! - Nicole did help though) but when I went to cook the rice, Nicole just about blew a top.

‘Don’t you have regular rice?’ she asked

‘This is regular rice!’ I said as a stared at the box.

‘Hey. Retard. That’s instant rice!’ She laughed.

‘Aren’t all rices instant?!?!’ I questioned.

I honestly had no idea there was anything other than instant rice. Really?!? And it takes 20 minutes to cook?! Holy Cow! That’s a long time!

That's pretty much why I don't speak up in class. I'm hideously embarrassing.

Just so ya know, I am getting better. I made a total kick butt sautéed chicken with pasta last night. Sure it took me three hours to make it (when it probably should have taken an hour), but it was AMAZING!


Lisa C Magnus said...

Just know that cooking yes is an art, but one that is learned. No one comes by it naturally. So you sound like you are well on your way to becoming a great food artist, just remember it's all about presentation.

sewcreative said...

Huh Lisa, it is also about knowing the differnece between regular, brown, and INSTANT rice. I can't believe I had a daughter that truly didn't know! Sigh.......this is going to be a long semester. Hangin tough for the young one.


Nicole McDonough said...

It's called Radicchio! The look on your face when I enlightened you to "regular" rice was priceless:)

Bekah said...

What the heck do you use Radicchio in!?!?!

Lizzie M. said...

It's in all those spring salad mixes. I think it just adds color, though some food snobs would say it has a light pepper flavor, with just a bit of bitterness to "even out" the salad.

Ok, whatever that just meant.

Bekah said...

Ugh. I hate my food educated sisters.